Sponsored By
Farm Progress

The beauty of the Texas BlacklandsThe beauty of the Texas Blacklands

A drive along the backroads of Taylor and Thrall, Texas, displays beautiful agriculture.

Shelley E. Huguley

July 2, 2018

24 Slides

The day before the Stiles Farm Field Day at Thrall, Texas, I spent the afternoon driving farm roads and looking at the beautiful landscape and the crops grown throughout the Texas Blacklands. While I had visited this area years ago, I had never focused on the agriculture visible from the access roads, bumped up against the ever-growing Austin population and urban communities. And while Austin continues to grow, you can still find some country life thriving in small towns like Thrall and Taylor. 

On the Texas South Plains, where I'm from, most crops grow in circles, pivots at the center and a turnrow between each crop. In Central Texas, cotton and corn or sorghum may grow one row over from each other in square or rectangular blocks with no irrigation, depending solely on Mother Nature to water their crops — something this region, as well as the South Plains, have been denied this year.

But in spite of the drought, there is beauty to be found in the Texas Blacklands. 

See Farm bill, new crop technologies featured at 55th Stiles Farm Field Day

About the Author(s)

Shelley E. Huguley

Editor, Southwest Farm Press

Shelley Huguley has been involved in agriculture for the last 25 years. She began her career in agricultural communications at the Texas Forest Service West Texas Nursery in Lubbock, where she developed and produced the Windbreak Quarterly, a newspaper about windbreak trees and their benefit to wildlife, production agriculture and livestock operations. While with the Forest Service she also served as an information officer and team leader on fires during the 1998 fire season and later produced the Firebrands newsletter that was distributed quarterly throughout Texas to Volunteer Fire Departments. Her most personal involvement in agriculture also came in 1998, when she married the love of her life and cotton farmer Preston Huguley of Olton, Texas. As a farmwife she knows first-hand the ups and downs of farming, the endless decisions that have to be made each season based on “if” it rains, “if” the drought continues, “if” the market holds. She is the bookkeeper for their family farming operation and cherishes moments on the farm such as taking harvest meals to the field or starting a sprinkler in the summer with the whole family lending a hand. Shelley has also freelanced for agricultural companies such as Olton CO-OP Gin, producing the newsletter Cotton Connections while also designing marketing materials to promote the gin. She has published articles in agricultural publications such as Southwest Farm Press while also volunteering her marketing and writing skills to non-profit organizations such a Refuge Services, an equine-assisted therapy group in Lubbock. She and her husband reside in Olton with their three children Breely, Brennon and HalleeKate.

Subscribe to receive top agriculture news
Be informed daily with these free e-newsletters

You May Also Like