Farming on Mars

Farming on Mars

This is Farming on Mars, a podcast that highlights the stories of people and agriculture on the South Plains of Texas in their own words.


Luis Sanchez: As the Gin Turns
Jul 8 • 21 min
Luis Sanchez is the Owens Coop Gin Superintendent and a farmer in the Owens area. He talks about how he started out working for the gin, farming on his own, and how both of his roles influence each other.
Gary Evitt: Peaks and Valleys
Apr 5 • 28 min
Gary Evitt is a recently retired farmer from the Idalou area (Lubbock County). We talked about how he started using cover crops on his fields and switching to no-till, his thoughts on the future of cotton farming on the South Plains, and the peaks and…
Kevin Brinkley: Getting Plains Cotton to the Right People at the Right Time
Apr 5 • 50 min
Kevin Brinkley is the president and CEO of Plains Cotton Cooperative Association (PCCA), which is a marketing cooperative based in Lubbock owned by farmers in TX, OK, KS, and NM. We talked about the history of PCCA, how they help cotton farmers market…
Walt Norris: A Legacy of Pristine Fields
Feb 6 • 32 min
Walt Norris is a farmer in Crosby County. We talked about his farming operation, how rain influences his mood, the good and bad years from his farming career, stories from his family, and the future of farming on the South Plains.
Dr. Murilo Maeda: A Whole Different World
Jan 13 • 27 min
Dr. Murilo Maeda is the extension cotton specialist and assistant professor for the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service in Lubbock. We talked about growing up around his family’s farming operation in Brazil, the WTO case between Brazil & the…
Brady Raindl: It’s Our Cotton, We Should Wear It
Dec 27, 2019 • 59 min
Brady Raindl is a cotton trader for ECOM USA in Lubbock. He and his wife also own Cotton Row Clothier, which is a cotton-based apparel company with shirts and caps that are made here in the U.S. from primarily Texas cotton. We talked about what a cotton…
Jerry Cave: Home is Where the Sand Is
Oct 3, 2019 • 99 min
Jerry Cave is a farmer from the Flower Grove-Ackerly (Martin County) area. He talks about coming back to the farm after his service in the Army, stories from his life as a dryland farmer, and advice for younger farmers.
Sam Stanley: Think Differently
Sep 2, 2019 • 28 min
Sam Stanley is an entirely no-till cotton and corn farmer in the Levelland area (Hockley County). He talks about his decision to switch to a no-till system, drip irrigation, 30-50 row spacing, cotton marketing, and why he was drawn to farming.
Dwight Roye: From the Golden Years to the Tech Years
Jul 19, 2019 • 43 min
Dwight Roye is a farmer in the Ralls area and along with his two sons, he is the co-owner/operator of Beta Ag, Inc., a custom application business that also sells seed and fertilizer. He talks about the golden years of irrigation in Crosby County, some…
Let Our Thoughts Be as Big as the West Texas Plains
Jun 2, 2019 • 2 min
Farming on Mars update! Answering what’s been going on, when new episodes are coming, and what my new adventure is…
Dr. Peter Dotray: Keeping Mars Weed-Free
Apr 18, 2019 • 30 min
Dr. Peter Dotray is a professor of weed science at Texas Tech University and holds a joint appointment with Texas A&M AgriLife Research & Extension, where he is the Extension Weed Specialist on the High Plains. We talked about what first piqued his…
Jennifer Blackburn: The Ties That Bind
Apr 18, 2019 • 29 min
Jennifer Blackburn is the External Affairs Director for National Sorghum Producers and the Sorghum Check-Off. We talked about some of the interesting new uses for grain sorghum, why agriculture means everything to her, and the Sorghum Smart Talk podcast.…
Emory Geye: It’s More Than Just Farming
Mar 18, 2019 • 40 min
Emory Geye is a senior plant and soil science student at Texas Tech from Rising Star, where he and his family farm cotton and peanuts. He talks about starting out as a young farmer, his thoughts about the future of farming and taking care of the soil, and…
Janet Thornton: A New Crop Every Year
Mar 4, 2019 • 23 min
Janet Thornton is an education specialist for the Region 17 Education Service Center and talks about challenges that rural school districts face, how small communities can retain teachers, opportunities for young people back in their small communities,…
Kody Bessent: Voice for the Plains
Feb 16, 2019 • 52 min
Kody Bessent, who is the vice president of operations and legislative affairs for Plains Cotton Growers, talks about being a voice for cotton farmers and communicating their needs in Austin and Washington and, D.C., the 2018 Farm Bill, agricultural trade…
Tim Cooper: Farming on Mars with the Help of the Butter Company
Feb 2, 2019 • 39 min
Tim Cooper is the District Seed Manager for WinField United (the ag division of Land O’Lakes) in the West Texas and New Mexico region.
Katy Sutton & Freddy Harkey: Keep an Open Mind
Jan 18, 2019 • 27 min
Katy Sutton and Freddy Harkey are a father-daughter farming team, who both farm in Lubbock County. They talk about their respective farming operations, their philosophies on making crop input decisions, and where they think the future of the cotton…
Allen Crausbay: Control Your Own Destiny
Dec 30, 2018 • 25 min
Allen Crausbay owned and operated Crosby County Pump and Machine for over 40 years, a business that his family started in the 1950s.
Kassadi Rinehart: Unlike Another Crop
Nov 19, 2018 • 40 min
Kassadi Rinehart is the Territory Manager for Phytogen for six counties to the north and east of Lubbock, including Lubbock County. She talks about how she ended up selling cottonseed in the Lubbock area after judging livestock in college, as well the…
Joseph Burke: A Winding Road to Soil Science
Nov 8, 2018 • 20 min
Joseph Burke, a graduate student working on his PhD in soil science at Texas A&M University with two degrees from Texas Tech University (wreck ‘em!), talks about his winding path to soil science and his research on the Texas High Plains.
Brooks Ellison: A Lifetime of Dry Spells
Nov 8, 2018 • 32 min
Brooks Ellison, a cotton farmer in the Crosbyton area, talks about his dryland farming operation, making input decisions, and advice for young people in agriculture.
Dr. Katie Lewis: Martian Soil Guru
Oct 27, 2018 • 25 min
Dr. Katie Lewis, a professor and soil scientist with a joint appointment between Texas Tech & Texas A&M AgriLife Research, talks about her passion for soil, the delicate balance between ensuring profitability and taking care of the soil, as well as why…
James & Lacey Todd: Having the Farmer’s Back
Oct 17, 2018 • 49 min
James & Lacey Todd, both lifelong agriculturists on the South Plains who run an independent crop consulting business in the Plainview area, talk about the role of a crop consultant on the farm, as well as where the balance lies between progress and…
James Santucci: Necessity Is the Mother of Invention
Oct 9, 2018 • 36 min
James Santucci, who farms cotton in the Mississippi Delta and worked at the Stoneville Experiment Station for almost 50 years, talks about how the farming landscape in the Delta has changed in recent years and the mechanical experiments that he worked on…
Dr. Jeff Johnson: From Texas Dust to Mississippi Mud
Oct 3, 2018 • 14 min
Dr. Johnson, who is the head of the Delta Research and Extension Center in Stoneville, Mississippi and worked in Lubbock for 20 years before coming to Stoneville, talks about the similarities and differences between the South Plains & the Delta, as well…
James & Tretha Caddell: Partners on the Plains
Sep 25, 2018 • 40 min
James & Tretha Caddell, who farm in Crosby County, talk about changes in rural communities through the years, farming before herbicides, and the importance of cotton to the region.
Shannon Adkins: Take Pride in Farming
Sep 17, 2018 • 9 min
Shannon Adkins, a cotton farmer in Crosby and Lubbock County, talks about weed control and cover crops on his farming operation and why he loves to farm on the South Plains.