Harvest has started in the Midsouth on a limited basis, although rains this week put work on hold in Arkansas in a large part of Arkansas. More rice in the region is being drained.


Rains also have delayed progress in portions of the coastal belt in Louisiana and Texas.


More yield reports are filtering in from southwest Louisiana. See comments by Dustin Harrell and connect to his yield survey in our Links section.



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Blake Foust, Consultant, Southern Heritage Cotton, LLC, Forrest City, Arkansas:

“With our rice, we’ve either started draining or will be draining fields next week. We have just a small amount of late rice still around. But most of this crop is coming to an end pretty quickly. One guy said that they may begin cutting some rice next week.


“None of our corn has been cut yet, although I’ve heard that a little harvest had started in the area. People were maybe cutting dryland fields at high moisture to get ahead of aflatoxin. One grower said he tried to combine some last week but the corn was still at 28% to 30% moisture.


“In soybeans, we’ve sprayed a pretty good bit for stink bugs here at the end. Worms, on the other hand, have mostly settled down.”


Harold Lambert, Independent Consultant, Innis, Louisiana:

“All of my rice this year is behind crawfish. A couple of fields were planted early and headed early, and only a small amount of those acres justified a rice stink bug spray. It was kind of a trap-crop situation, but even then, the numbers weren’t heavy.


“Overall, though, almost none of our rice has required a stink bug treatment yet. Our later rice is just slipping out of the boot.”


Hank Jones, C&J Ag Consulting, Pioneer, Louisiana:

“We’re draining a bunch of rice, and the crop looks pretty good. We are seeing a little rice going down where we had a good bit of grass escapes and red rice. Some of that may go down a little more before harvest.


“Stink bugs range from almost nonexistent to steady populations, with lingering thresholds even where we sprayed. We’re contending with wash off, too, where products went on and a popup shower followed. That’s always frustrating.


“It looks like a pretty good rice crop and I’m excited about that. I imagine that someone may try to cut a hybrid field in 10 days but I think we’re mostly 14 days (as of 8/7) from seeing combines running.”


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

“We’re well into harvest. The last estimate – which was late last week – put us at 23% finished with the main crop statewide. Reports from Rice Belt Warehouse indicate yields are really good – averaging about 9,200 lbs/acre wet. However, these early yields tend to be our best. No reports of any big problems. We just need a better price.”


Jarrod T. Hardke, Arkansas Extension Rice Specialist:

“We have started harvest, although I’m not sure that a whole field has been completed yet. We’ve moved into overcast, rainy weather, so a lot of activity is on hold and farmers are getting twitchy. They really want to roll.


“On a positive note, really good rice is coming out where any combines have run. That’s always a nice precursor to how the season might trend. If the early rice is uneven or questions arise at all, that doesn’t bode well since the early rice is usually the best. When things look this good at the front end, that’s a really positive point.


“A lot of rice already has been drained south of Interstate 40 and more water is coming off fields north of I-40 and up to the Missouri line. We might see rice being cut all the way up the state once people can get in the field again.


“I am concerned about the fact that a big part of this crop is coming out at the same time. I realize that drying costs aren’t something growers want to think about, but there are reasons this year to get in the field as soon as possible. It’s not just that rice is ready. Corn is being cut and even some soybeans have been harvested.



“With these conditions, nothing much will happen right away. But when the weather turns around and things dry up again, everything will happen at once. If you don’t move quickly, you’ll be playing from behind.


“Consider going in with sodium chloride to gain at least some head start. Timing is everything with this strategy. Don’t apply it until the average grain moisture is below 25% and stop applying it when the average moisture drops under 18%. If you salt a field, start cutting 3 or 4 days after the application. Waiting a week can result in milling yield losses.


“Going with a harvest aid is a logistical decision so you can jump in a little earlier, and this is lining up to be a year when that matters. Remember, too, that a harvest aid is a tool, just like a hammer. Used right, a hammer will drive in a nail. Used incorrectly, you’ll end up smashing your thumb. Follow those guidelines about the moisture range and harvest timing and you won’t hit your thumb.”


DeWayne Dopslauf, Crop Production Services, Wharton, Texas:

“We’re maybe halfway through with our main-crop harvest. Yields in our early, early rice were a little off, which I think was due to blanking. When that part of the crop was flowering, the weather turned wet, and that seems to be the cause of the blanking. After about a week, though, yields began picking up and the averages look better. We’re getting little showers and thunderstorms now. One rice field was cutting pretty good, then a thunderstorm blew half of it down.”


Dustin Harrell, Louisiana Rice Extension Specialist, LSU Rice Research Station, Crowley:

“We’re a little over 35% finished with the main crop harvest in southwest Louisiana, although progress this week has been very slow. Spotty showers have been developing nearly every day, and we don’t see much of a break in the short run.


“The forecast ranges from a 40% to 80% chance of rain over the next 5 days (from 8/9) and then 20% to 60% chances for several days beyond that.


“Unfortunately, some of these storms have included wind. We have a pretty good crop out there, which means it’s top-heavy, and some rice in the region has gone down. In terms of any effects on quality or yields, we need to get that rice out before it’s been down too long. The last thing we want is for any sprouting or shattering to develop.


“Yields have been doing really well. A lot of hybrids are in the 60s (barrels/acre) and a good many of the varieties are in the 50s. Where we have lower-yielding fields, we can pretty much identify problems that contributed to the decline. It might be increased weed pressure, sheath blight or bacterial panicle blight. But in general, the yields have been great, really outstanding.


“Provisia rice has been a nice surprise, too. Most averages are in the low to mid 40s. One field even averaged into the low 50s. For Provisia, that is a very respectable. I told growers at meetings that 45 barrels an acre was about the maximum we might expect with Provisia this year and that any production issues would reduce the yield from there. But yields are holding up well, and in several cases, fields have exceeded that 45-barrel mark. That’s aside from the Provisia system ridding us of out-crossings and red rice issues.”




Louisiana Rice: Yields Mostly “Hold Strong” In SW Parishes   8-9


World Rough Rice Prices Decline   8-9


 More Rice News And Analysis



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