Mississippi Rice Progress – July 19, 2013

Tim Walker, Agronomist
By Tim Walker, Agronomist July 19, 2013 16:50

The 2013 Mississippi Rice Crop continues to progress.  In general, this week really began the heading stage, with heads emerging on about 10 to 15% of the crop.  Based on the crop planting progress, heading for the crop as a whole will continue over the next few weeks.  Disease pressure has been minimal so far.  Premixes of Quilt or Stratego at late boot for the prevention of smut have been good for any minor sheath blight pressure that is out there.  Since we will be heading over a wide time period, and sheath blight and blast pressure are impacted by weather, folks should remain vigilant to monitor disease pressure.  Rex and CL151 are the most susceptible of the varieties we have planted in the state with respect to blast, so those should be monitored closely, especially if they are planted on coarse-textured soils that are hard to maintain the flood, or in pockets of fields near trees.

According to information provided by Dr. Jeff Gore, as well as my own field observations, stink bug pressure is high.  Be prepared to treat them, especially on the earliest heading rice.  Dr. Gore will continue to provide updates on stinkbug pressure.  There are a lot of fields with headed barnyardgrass due to problems controlling big grass in the spring.  This can increase stinkbug problems in those fields.  Speaking of barnyardgrass, I have received numerous calls over the last couple of weeks about how to treat big barnyardgrass that in many cases has already headed.  Dr. Jarrod Hardke addressed this issue in the Arkansas Rice Progress report this week.  You can access it at http://www.rice.msstate.edu/states/2013/arkansas_rice_update7-18-13.pdf.  Dr. Jason Bond and I have had discussion already about issues we need to address in winter meetings regarding early season grass control.

If the long range forecast for July materializes, we have had excellent weather for rice production.  Based on the majority of our rice acres, August can make us or break us with respect to yield and quality.  I took a look at the August temperatures from 2005 to 2012.  The average high/low over that period was 94/72.  There were 26 events where the daytime/nighttime temps were 100+/75+.  Eighteen of the 26 events occurred in 2010 and 2011.  The combination of high day- and nighttime temperatures can impact yield with panicle blight and can increase chalk.  If we are blessed with more of the average day and nighttime temps, it will allow the crop to continue to progress at a good pace and should support high yield and grain quality.  Let’s pray that happens!

Contrary to USDA’s planted acreage report, my official estimate is that Mississippi has 110,000 to 120,000 acres planted in 2013.  I have been very thorough in my assessment and have held back making my estimate public to be sure it was as accurate as possible.  Variety selection has been unique in that no pure-line/hybrid has greater than 20% of the acreage.  It really is a mixed bag.  Planting multiple varieties has its positives; however, with grain quality concerns continuing to press our industry, having 10+ different varieties over 120,000 acres may not be something we want to continue into the future.

Please join us for the Mississippi State University Rice Field Day in Stoneville on July 30th.  Registration begins at 2:30 P.M.  The keynote address will be given by Mr. Andy Morris, Mars, Inc., North America Rice Buyer.  Field Tours will depart at 3:40 P.M.  Contact me at 662-822-2291 if you have questions.

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Tim Walker, Agronomist
By Tim Walker, Agronomist July 19, 2013 16:50
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