The Adventure Continues… Cotton
I honestly didn’t expect an episode entitled ‘Cotton’ could be all that interesting, but as usual Huell takes what might be a dull subject and makes it informative yet fun. California grows its share of the nation’s cotton, both Upland/Acala and Pima types, and cotton is the main industry of the town of Buttonwillow, which was founded back in 1895. This episode first aired in 2006 when cotton acreage was about 660,000; however, because drought and lack of water have a huge effect on this crop, by 2021 the total acreage had dropped to between 100,000 to 135,000.
A full size bale of cotton lint weighs approximately 500 pounds and stands about 41/2 ft. high. A typical bale can produce as many as 8000 handkerchiefs, or 3400 pairs of socks, or 750 shirts, or 3000 diapers, or 325 pairs of jeans, or 200 full size bed sheets to name a few examples — CCGGA
California is the fifth largest cotton-producing state, while the San Joaquin Valley is the heart of California cotton country. Huell spends a day in Buttonwillow, which calls itself the “Cotton Capitol of California” and has a great time out in the fields. For historical purposes, he picks cotton the old-fashioned way, and then steps into the future and learns about a new, state-of-the-art cotton gin.