Much of this rice crop is going to be ready at the same time, making timely harvest a chore. With that, it may be very useful to salt fields to get started where we can.
Make sodium chlorate applications only after average grain moisture is below 25% and stop applications once average grain moisture falls below 18%. Harvest preferably within 4 days, but no more than 7 days after application.
The recommended rate is 3 to 6 lb a.i. / acre. Avoid applying ahead of rainy weather that can prevent timely harvest (see current forecast). If you apply sodium chlorate too early (above 25% moisture) you can expect grain yield losses. If you apply it too late (below 18% moisture) you can expect milling yield losses.
Always keep in mind the variability of the field.
If the average moisture of your sample area is below 25% but you know there are “greener” areas in the field, it will be best to wait until those areas are drier before application.
If the average sample area is above 18% but you know there are drier areas in the field, it may be best to avoid the application altogether.
Sodium chlorate is a harvest aid – as in a tool, like a hammer. Use it right and hit the nail, not your thumb.