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AGRICULTURAL NEWS OF THE WEEK - FEDERAL RESERVE BANK OF DALLAS umber L:.83 Wedaesday, April 1, 1959 Y E L L 0 W D WA R F H I T S T E XAS GRA ~ F I E L DS Yellow dwarf - a virus disease of oats, barley, and wheat - has infected ~ grain fields (mainly oats) in central, ~h-central ) and~a lesser degree, the Rolling Plains areas of Texas, reports the Texas Agricultural Extension Service. Under some conditions, the disease has been called red leaf. Infected oat plants have a characteristic salmon-pink!£ red color, and the plants are dwarfed. The extent of dwarfing depends upon the stage of growth of the plant at the time of infection. C 0 T T 0 N G I NN I NG S Cotton ginned from the 1958 crop in the United States totaled 11.4 millio bales, according to the Bureau of the Census. The total compares with 10,9 million bales ginned from the 1957 crop and 13.2 million bales from the 1956 crop. The grade index of the 1958 cotton crop was sharply above that of a year earlier, and the ~ age staple length was the longest of record, Ginnings of American-Egyptian cotton in 1958 are placed at 81,900 bales, reflecting increases of 3% over 1957 and 65% over 1956. As compared with a year ago, American-Egyptian cotton averaged slightly higher in grade but about the same in staple length. In the states of the Eleventh Federal Reserve District (Arizona, Louisiana, ~ew Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas), approximately 5.9 million bales of .£.s>~ were ginned from the 1958 crop - up 13% from a year earlier, ISSUED 0 R D E R TOMATO MARKETING A Federal order authorizing regulation of handling of tomatoes grown in the ~ ~ Grande--v;rfey of Texas will become effective on April l, according to the U, S, Department of Agriculture. The action follows approval of the program in a referendum held February 25 to March 2, H0 NE Y P R I CE S UP P 0 RT ANN0 UNCE D The USDA recently announced that honey will be supported at a national average price of 8.2¢ per lb. during the 1959 marketing season, which begins April 1. The level reflects 60% of the March parity--pt:'ice. The national average support level for 1958-crop honey was 9.6¢ per lb., or 70% of parity. T RE E P L ANT I NG D0 UBL E S I N 5 YE AR S Tree planting in this country has more than doubled during the past 5 years, reaching an all-time high of 1.6 mill~a~ during the fiscal year e~ded ~30, 1958, reports the u'S'i5'A: Forest plantings accounted for 98% of the record ~1-,-an~ndbarrier plantings made up the remainder. The increase in tree plantings is the result of both a growing interest in the enterprise by private landowners and the expansion in tree nurseries. About 86% of the plantings in fiscal 1958 was on privately owned land, In the states of the Eleventh Federal Reserve District (Arizona, Louisiana, ew Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas), tree plantings during the 1958 fiscal year totaled 148,149 acres, up 55% from the 5-year-earlier level. F I RE L 0 S S ~ S FARM R I S E Farm property losses in the Nation as a result of fires amounted t o 115 6 million during 1958, or $L~ million greater than a year earlier, reports the USDA. The losses include buildings, machinery, crops, and livestock. S P R I N G F A R R 0 WI N G S UP 1 0 % The number of sows farrowing this spring in nine Corn Belt States is placed at 5.6 million head, 'Or 10% larger than---ru-the spring of 1958 but 1% below the 10year-(1948-57) ~age, ~ording to the Agricultural Marketing Service. These states (Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Nebraska, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin) accounted for two-thirds of the national pig crop in 1958. U. S. L I VE S T 0 CK TRADE The United States imported $512 million worth of livestock, meat, and mea t products (excluding wool) during 1958~cording to the Foreign Agricultural Servic e. The total was 78% greater than the 1957 imports and 97% above the 1951-55 average . The major factors in this sharp rise were record imports of meat and cattle. u. s. exports of livestock and meat during 1958 amounted to $287 million, or 25% less than a year earlier but 9% higher than the 1951-55 average. The outlook for 1959 is fo r a slight reduction in imports and for some increase in exports. ~- -~- I T AL I ANS I NT R I G UE D B y AMERICAN FE E D Many Italians have inquired about the possibility of purchasing ~ ~ feed grains from the United States as a result of the u. s. exhibit featuring thes e products at the recent Agricultural ~ in Verona, Italy: reports the USDA. The display - the first of a traveling type ever sponsored by the USDA - will be shown in other Italian cities as well as in other European countries. POULTRY The Texas commercial broiler markets were about steady on Monday, March 30 following fairly general price declines during the previous week end, according to the State Department of Agriculture. Trading was moderate in south Texas and norma l in east Texas. The following prices per lb. were quoted: South Texas, 15~¢ to 17¢ , mostly 16¢; and east Texas, 15¢ to 16¢. <.In the latter area, 60% of the sales were at undetermined prices.) BROILER CHICK PLACEMENTS Percentage change from Comparable Previous week week, 1958 Area Week ended March 21, 1959 Texas •••••• Louisiana •• 2' 271, 000 494,000 -14 -5 18 22 states •• 36,123,000 0 23 J. z. Rowe Agricultural Economist -6