Arkansas Rice: Still a Long Way to Go

Rice beginning to flower. ©Debra L Ferguson

Tropical Storm Barry is on its way north and it’s bringing rain. Because we needed something else to worry about in 2019.

Some of the predictions have started to reduce our expected rainfall amounts, but things continue to change. The greatest concerns are wind to cause lodging, but also rainfall during the middle of the day on flowering rice that may reduce pollination.

Windy rain can be very bad to increase disease occurrence and severity. It can also damage sensitive flower parts and lead to blanking. If winds are light and mid-day rains are limited then the impact should be minimal, but several consecutive days are a bad recipe.

The upside out there is that we are finally getting to heading. Hopefully this weather pattern will keep our overnight temperatures on the lower side as we enter grain fill stages and
keep our quality up.

As expected, rice stink bugs are moving into isolated early-heading fields at levels that exceed thresholds. So far the numbers haven’t been huge, but plenty to warrant treatment.

Leaf blast reports remain minimal, but the upcoming prolonged wet periods from the storm will likely cause an increase in blast development. Sheath blight has been progressing fast as well and conditions will continue to be favorable for its progression.

We still have a long way to go to get this crop in the bin. Continue to scout for disease and insects and spray based on thresholds as appropriate.

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Rice & Advice Video Series

If you haven’t seen them, we’ve started a video series called “Rice & Advice”. You can check it out here. Recent episodes discuss rice appearance and nitrogen fertility, and determining reproductive growth stages in rice to help time midseason nitrogen and fungicide applications.

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