One lonely cotton plant in a West Texas vineyard…

This really is a strange site. First all most of the plants you see here are grape vines. Dormant from the winter, the plants look like sticks without leaves on them tied to metal and bamboo poles and wires. But then … there it is … a single cotton plant. Somehow a seed from somewhere (we do have quite a few cotton seeds around here in West Texas) sprouted and grew.

It is unusual also because it grew last summer. Most of the plants from its growth cycle were harvested last September, but it’s still here. The cotton in the boll is still rather white and fluffy.

It is as though that cotton plant grew there to remind us of our past.

The cotton plant is a reminder of our history and heritage growing where Johnnie and Vera Bingham used to live. Johnnie was one of nine children who came to Terry County in a covered wagon with his parents and seven of his siblings in 1916. Vera Bell was born to Noah and Mary Bell who homesteaded in 1901 in the Needmore community. Needmore is closer to our home than even the cities of Meadow or Brownfield. The Bells lived in a dugout till they had wood sent in from Colorado City, Texas for a house. Ranching was the life for the Bells and later for Johnnie and Vera Bingham.

Johnnie grubbed and broke this native pastureland and cultivated it with teams of horses until he bought his first steel wheel “Regular” Farmall tractor in the latter 1930’s. Cotton became a part of the seasons of their lives.

Then My Honey’s father Eddie Bingham came along and continued with cotton and some cattle. Now here we are today still growing cotton. But we have added some grapevines for diversification. Or did we add them for the joy of it.

I am glad that My Honey shared his family with me by marrying me. Thank you all.

But we really haven’t forgotten the little cotton plant. I’ll try to get out in the field more with my camera this summer to show you the cotton blossoms. As life continues on … may the glory be to God.

Blessings, Betty

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