Greetings from Louisiana rice country! This year, the blog will concentrate research conducted at the LSU AgCenter Rice Research Station, in addition to showing the progress of a 6-acre field of rice planted March 19 to produce foundation seed. We encourage your comments and thoughts to help improve this online tool. If you would like a photograph of a particular piece of equipment or a better explanation of a process, let us know.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Herbicide doing its job

Many of the rice plants in Farmer Romaine Durel’s 40-acre rice crop have white splotches, shown above. Dr. Johnny Saichuk, LSU AgCenter rice specialist, said that tells him the herbicide Command was applied at the correct rate 12 ounces per acre. He said the rice will grow out of that slight injury, and the herbicide is having its effects on the primary weeds, sedge and dayflower. The crop of Clearfield 151 is now ready for an application of Newpath, and Durel hopes to have that sprayed no later than the weekend.
Meanwhile, Durel is getting ready to plant an additional 200 acres, also CL151 on a field that he had planned to leave fallow this year. He said he decided to plant more rice after last weekend’s rain, more than 5 inches at his farm near Kaplan. He said the rain resupplied the irrigation canals with abundant water that has flushed away salt. Durel and many other farmers in his area were reluctant to plant fields irrigated by surface water because of saltwater remaining in the canals left from Hurricane Ike.
Despite the heavy rain, it was possible to walk on the field without getting muddy feet. Saichuk said quick drainage is another advantage of no-till farming.
The Rice Research Station recorded the weekend rainfall at 7.5 inches. Most of that has drained, and the crop in the blog field is showing some growth.
Larry White, Rice Research Station foundation seed director, said fertilizer, 250 pounds per acre of 8-24-24, will be applied by airplane Thursday morning.

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