It continues to rain just enough in parts of the Midsouth to prevent farmers from pulling levees and sending more rice to flood. But showers have been scattered enough that parts of the region actually needs rain, to the point that heavy clays have been cracking.


Even with rain, the weather has trended towards more sunny days and hotter temperatures, which has clearly pushed rice already at flood.


A little more rice is heading in Texas. The weather there has definitely shifted into a summer pattern.


At least a bit more rice is being planted in the Midsouth. Rice prices strengthened lately, which may have prompted a few more growers to stick seed in the ground. Also, dicamba injury to Midsouth soybeans (see Links section) has become a major focus, so some farmers may be shifting those last unplanted acres to rice to minimize exposure.


Rice water weevils are becoming more active in Mississippi.


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Harold Lambert, Independent Consultant, Innis, Louisiana

“Some of our rice that’s following crawfish went to permanent flood a couple of days ago (from 6/12). For the last 4 weeks we’ve been in a weather pattern with far too much rain. If there’s any kind of bright spot, it’s rained enough that we’ve definitely saved water from the standpoint of flushing rice.”


David Hydrick, Hydrick’s Crop Consulting, Inc., Jonesboro, Arkansas

“We’re pretty much at midseason on rice. No midseason fertilizer has gone out yet (as of 6/13), although I expect some to start at the end of this week or early next week.


“We’re still trying to get a flood on some fields where conditions delayed things, and a portion of that rice will probably be at midseason by the time we can establish the flood. We’re dealing with a lot of drift issues on soybeans and rice from various products (see Links section), and it’s fairly widespread in parts of our area.”


M.O. Way, Texas A&M Entomologist, Beaumont

“Rice on the west side (of Houston) looks good and a lot of fields are heading. Populations of rice stink bugs (RSB) on that side of our production area aren’t too bad. However, I am finding plenty of RSB around the Beaumont research center. We’ve moved into hotter and drier weather, and rice is flowering now in places, so that’s a concern in terms of panicle blight.”


Gus Lorenz, Arkansas Extension IPM Specialist

“A lot of fields are still going to flood and the phone continues to ring about rice water weevil (RWW) activity. People are seeing more insects and scarring than they have in a while.


“In some cases the rice adjoined a tree line, which is where RWW had been staging. They moved out from the tree line and caused a good amount of scarring but only in the first couple of paddies out from the trees, then the scarring tapered off deeper into the field. In those cases you might be able to limit spraying, just doing the edges.


“In late-planted rice – particularly in our prairie region – we’re still seeing damage from grape colaspis. They caused a lot of injury, killed plants and thinned out stands in places, which further attracts RWW. Females look for thin stands as a place to lay eggs.”


Curt Johnson, CRC Ag Consulting, LLC, Lake Village, Arkansas

“It’s gotten dry here now (6/15). I just came out of a buckshot field and the cracks were wide enough that you sure don’t want to drop your pocket knife. Big clouds are on the horizon and afternoon showers are in the forecast.


“My rice is all over the board. From 50% to 60% is flooded and 25% is already at midseason. And some rice just went in the ground yesterday. Where that rice was just planted, all the sporadic rain this spring kept the farmer from planting earlier. These were smaller fields that he couldn’t work up when he was doing the big ones.


“The weather simply didn’t give him a break. When things dried up a little, he had to concentrate on other priorities in fields he’d already planted. Every time he caught up, it rained again and put those last acres on hold one more time.


“One large grower still had some acres left to plant and finally decided it would go into beans. Another client missed out on 200 acres, again because of the weather. Altogether, though, only a fraction of my rice acres finally went to beans.


“We’ve had problem areas where herbicides couldn’t go out on time due to rain or we had other crops next to the rice and winds were blowing in the wrong direction. That’s left us with some messes, and we’re spending way more money than usual to clean them up. That said, we also have places where everything turned out great and we could pretty much stay on schedule.


“Soybeans range from not blooming to almost at R5. The majority are at R3 to R4. No insect pressure whatsoever. I’ve been steadily scouting but have only been finding a handful of stink bugs. Redbanded stink bugs are out there, too, but I might find one of them out of every 1,000 stink bugs I turn up.


“Where I have found stink bugs, it’s been southern greens and I might count 10 or 12 all day. A few armyworms and green clover worms are around but not enough to even think about treating.”


DeWayne Dopslauf, Crop Production Services, Wharton, Texas

“Less than 5% of my rice is heading (as of 6/15), just the very earliest fields, but quite a bit should be starting next week. We’re beginning fungicides in a little rice that’s in boot.


“We’re now going to flood on the really late rice. Some of that is organic rice but I also work with growers around Beaumont who had late rice. A few are still talking about planting a little more. What they’ll plant late is all hybrid, so it should still make a pretty good yield.


“Temperatures have been in the low to mid 90s and the heat index hit 100 on a couple of days, so we’re into a typical Texas summer. This really didn’t start until 7 to 10 days ago (from 6/15).


“No insect issues. I found some armyworms in places a week or so back and treated one field with a pyrethroid. The other fields were organic, so they just ran deep water across it.”


Jarrod T. Hardke, Arkansas Extension Rice Specialist

“Things look better and better now that we have consistent sunshine and warm temperatures. Earlier this week they recorded the first 90-degree high for the year in Little Rock. We’re now into what feels like rice growing weather.


“A thin line of storms moved through, and that helped. It was dry enough for long enough to allow people to catch up, so a lot of rice is ready to go to flood. That rainfall will help with the water. We actually needed a rain in places.



“Over the last few days (from 6/15) a little more rice was planted in northeast Arkansas. The rice market has improved, which may be nudging people into planting a little more rice instead of soybeans. Also, we’ve had all these issues with herbicide drift damage in soybeans (see Links section), so that may have influenced some growers to finish out with rice.


“Obviously, our research shows that you’re at risk planting this late. You can make a crop, provided the fall weather goes your way, but you also could see rice go down if conditions turn against you. Odds for rice this late are poorer in north and central Arkansas and those areas are well past the window for planting at all.


“We’re into that period when a number of nutrient deficiencies become apparent. Depending on the nutrient that’s running short, you still may have time to recover some yield potential. Keep an eye out for odd spots where symptoms appear. Sometimes this can occur on a fairly large part of a field, maybe due to land leveling.


“We’re approaching the time to at least plan that single 100-pound/acre midseason urea application on varieties. The application should go on after green ring and after a minimum of 21 days past preflood nitrogen has been incorporated, meaning when the flood was established.


“That 21 days is the minimum but later is better. The point is to make the application when plants have taken up the preflood nitrogen. When I’m making that decision in my plots, it’s at 4 weeks not 3.


“Just starting the flood doesn’t count as the point for accumulating those 21 days. You have to wait for the flood to move across the field. If it takes 7 days to get water to the bottom of the field, that’s when the clock begins running.


“Growers have more time than they often think. We’ve seen midseason go out all the way to flag leaf emergence and still measured the same yield response as applications made earlier. Those guidelines apply under normal conditions. If some of the preflood nitrogen was lost, for example, then you may have to go earlier.”


Bobby Golden, Mississippi Extension Rice and Soil Fertility Agronomist

“We’re kind of in the same situation as last week. Rice in flood looks good but we’re still trying to get water on more acreage. Popup showers still have us playing catchup where growers are trying to finish levees and apply fertilizer.


“Hopefully, we’ll get most of the remaining rice to flood over the next week. In some cases growers have been spoon feeding rice where they’ve run into more delays.


“We’ve been picking up reports of pretty significant rice water weevil (RWW) activity, including scarring, in some flooded rice. They saw that earlier in Arkansas and RWW are turning up here now.


“Over the last 10 days we’ve had sunshine and warmer weather, and rice is growing fast. Plants that have been flooded for a week or two have been able to pick up nitrogen and are visibly responding.”


Amy Beth Dowdy, ABD Crop Consulting, Dexter, Missouri

“A third of my rice has been at flood for about 2 weeks. A handful of fields will get their midseason next week, going by the Arkansas guidelines, but more will go out the week after that.


“In past years the average for our midseason applications has been in the week before the Fourth of July or during the week of the Fourth. We made an early start with planting and thought we had a big head start with the crop. But with cool weather and all the rain, crop progress stalled and we’re now on about our regular schedule for midseason.


“We’re attempting to flood up a big portion of the rest of the rice. At this point we actually need a rain to help move that along. It’s been dry enough in places for the ground to crack, so it’s taking longer to pump up fields.


“We’re now dealing with escapes where we were delayed getting levees up and water across field. In some cases rice fields went from pretty to pretty ugly pretty fast. I’ve got several levee fields this year and the weather didn’t cooperate when we wanted to get them up. Every time it almost got dry enough, more rain fell, which would hold us back another 4 days. And when it was dry enough to pull levees, some farmers also were concentrating on planting soybeans while they still had moisture, so we fell farther behind.”




Louisiana: Rice Field Day, Crowley, June 28 6-13


Mississippi Rice: Considerations for Rice Water Weevil Management 6-12


Preventing Dicamba Drift – Video   6-15


Resistant Weeds – Options When Control Jumps The Track – AgFax   6-15


Rice Farmers Generate First Carbon Credits Purchased by Microsoft   6-15


Herbicides: Consider Temperature Inversions Before Spraying – Video   6-14


Dicamba Drift: Injury Reports Rolling in as Investigations Begin – DTN   6-14


Dicamba Injury: Don’t Get Complacent on Sprayer Cleanout, Upkeep   6-14


Louisiana: 7 Upcoming Rice Field Days Through July


Crop Insurance: Trump Cuts Would Eliminate Harvest Price Option and Limit Farm Size   6-14


Louisiana: Northeast Research Station Field Day, St. Jospeh, June 20


 More Rice News And Analysis Here




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