Rice Seed Rates
Numerous seed rate studies have been conducted for drill-seeded rice. Dr. Jason Bond and I published work in 2005, and recently, Dr. Dustin Harrell at the Rice Research Station in Crowley, LA, has updated their seeding rate recommendations. The common theme among most all seeding rate studies is that the optimum plant population ranges from 12 to 20 plants per square foot. It typically takes two planted seeds to result in one living plant at the time of flooding. Therefore, 24 to 40 seeds per square foot should be planted. I have attached a Seeding Rate Table that shows the pounds of seed needed to achieve the optimum plant population for the varieites that will be planted in Mississippi in 2013. There can be a large different between varieties to achieve the optimum plant stand. For example, a smaller seeded variety like Cheniere requires 65 pounds of seed per acre to plant 30 seeds per square foot compared to 79 pounds of seed per acre for Rex to get the same number of seeds. For lodging susceptible varieties like CL151 and CL111, I would not plant more than 30 seeds per square foot. Most drills used today are set on 8 or 10 inch spacings. For 8 inch spacings, you should count the target number of seeds in 18 inches of row. For 10 inch spacings, you should count the target number of seeds in 14.5 inches of row. For example, if one wanted to plant 30 seeds per square foot and the drill units were spaced 8 inches apart, then 30 seeds should be counted in 18 inches of row. Thirty seeds should be counted in 14.5 inches of row if the drill units were spaced 10 inches apart. Seed rate information for pure-line varieties only! Hybrid rice requires less seed to perform at optimum levels.