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.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

All done

The final of 3 fields of rice shown on the webcam was cut Wednesday, with a yield of 37 barrels per acre for the CL161 variety. Harvest was completed Friday on the first field, the  CL 131 variety, and the yield was approximately 43 barrels per acre. The second field, CL151, was cut Monday and it yielded around 47 barrels. Shown in the video above is the harvest Friday at the first field.

Friday, July 8, 2011

First rice harvested at the station

Yesterday, the first rice was cut for 2011 on the LSU AgCenter Rice Research Station. But harvesting was done by hand, not by a combine, because this is rice grown in transplanted rows for the breeding projects of Drs. Xueyan Sha and Steve Linscombe, and they have to be able to tag each bundle of rice so it can be identified after it is threshed and dried.
As you can see from the video below, this is hot and dirty work and very little breeze was noticeable even in the middle of the day.

 These plants are the F1 generation from crosses made for variety improvement last summer. The seed from those crosses was planted in the greenhouse in mid- February. As soon as it was warm enough, the resulting plants were transplanted by hand into this field. These bundles will be threshed and the resulting seed will be dried. Much of this seed will be loaded into planting cells and shipped to the winter nursery facility near Lajas, Puerto Rico, where it will be planted  in late July/early August.  The winter nursery allows these breeding projects to conduct varietal improvement research year-around.

In the meantime, the field that is the focus of the webcam is expected to be harvested in a little more than a month. Larry White, station foundation seed manager, said the rice plants are just starting to develop heads where the rice panicles are being formed.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Rice Research Station Field Day prep work

If you have been to the LSU AgCenter Rice Research Station in the past few days, you would have seen a flurry of activity for the upcoming annual Field Day held at the station. Grass is being mowed, the road is being graded, signs have been erected and LSU AgCenter county agents and specialists were getting briefed Wednesday, the day before the event, on what would be presented. Later, Dr. Johnny Saichuk, LSU AgCenter rice specialists, conducted an education session for county agents in the rice growing parishes.

A surprise will be evident to LSU fans during the field tours, which start at 7:15 a.m. The last trailer for the tour leaves at 9:15 a.m., and a program will begin at 10:30 a.m. The field day ends with a lunch.

Below, the county agents and other LSU AgCenter personnel listen to remarks of Dr. Natalie Hummel, LSU AgCenter entomologist during Wednesday's preparation.

Below, Dr. Don Groth, LSU AgCenter plant pathologist, tells county agents what comments he will make at the field day. You can see the county agents' reflections in his sunglasses.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Permanent flood

The well was started Wednesday for the permanent flood on the blog field. If everything goes as planned, the water won’t be released until 2 weeks before harvest, expected in mid-August.

Larry White, foundation seed manager at the Rice Research Station, applied a herbicide combination Tuesday of RiceBeaux and Permit. Wednesday morning, an airplane flew 200 pounds of urea fertilizer per acre just before the valve was opened for the water, shown in the video below.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Killing weeds

Larry White went on the attack Friday morning against young weeds, specifically barnyardgrass, sedges and alligator weed.

He sprayed a mixture of Permit and Londax, each at a half-ounce per acre each Permit at the rate of a half-ounce per acre, and Londax, and 1 gallon per acre of propanil.

White said he waited to spray Newpath on the Clearfield varieties 131, 151 and 161 because of a slight wind that might have blown it onto a nearby field of Jazzman II.

Click on the video below to view the spraying process:

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Dr. Herry Utomo, molecular geneticist at the Rice Research Station, is applying the methods he uses to help rice breeders in developing varieties of spartina marsh grass. Monday, an airplane flew to the east side of Marsh Island in Vermilion Bay to drop seeds of the plants Utomo and his staff have developed. The area planted is a test being conducted as part of a federally funded 1,159-acre project being administered by the Louisiana Office of Coastal Protection and Restoration and the Natural Resources Conservation Service.

A total of 3.8 million cubic yards of dredged material was removed from East Cote Blanche Bay to repair hurricane damage on Marsh Island. Levees were built to contain the material.

Shown in the picture above with Utomo, the airplane dropped the smooth cordgrass seed in the same way that rice seed is applied by air.

However, most of the revegetation on the project will use small marsh plants that will be transplanted by hand.

Click on the videos below to see the planting operation:

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Early morning rain Tuesday

For the first time in 2 weeks, it rained Tuesday morning at the Rice Research Station, and throughout Southwest Louisiana. The total in the rain gauge was 3.35 inches, just the third time rain was recorded at the station this month. Previous rains were on April 5 with .1 of an inch, and April 16 with .16 of an inch.

Larry White, director of the station’s foundation seed program, said the rice on the blog field emerged either Friday or Saturday and the rainfall provided enough moisture to cover the seedlings. He said the field will be sprayed with herbicide next week.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Fertilizer applied Tuesday

Windy conditions made application of fertilizer by airplane an interesting task Tuesday. Notice in the video below how the pilot angles the aircraft to compensate for the strong south wind. The 8-24-24 fertilizer was applied at the rate of 250 pounds per acre. During the night, the field was flooded. Young rice plants should emerge in a few days.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

New webcam field is planted today

The webcam at the LSU AgCenter Rice Research Station will focus on foundation seed production of three Clearfield varieties. Each variety will be planted on approximately four acres. The three varieties are (left to right) CL151, CL131, and CL161. Each variety will be seeded at approximately 45 pounds per acre.
In the photo above, Foundation Seed Manager Larry White is planting the field.
To see the webcam, click on the link on the right side of this page.

You can also click on the movie clip below to see the planting. This is the first attempt at video on this blog.