By AgFax Media LLC, AgFax.com
More rice acres will likely be lost in Arkansas to this month's flooding than initially thought. Last week the estimate was about 150,000 acres. That number could increase to some degree. How much rice will still be planted or replanted remains an open question. See comments by Jarrod Hardke.
Rice prices edged up at least a little this week. Presumably, the market is now taking into account the potential acreage shortfall in Arkansas and maybe other states. We've heard a couple of reports of Midsouth farmers increasing rice plantings to take advantage of any upwards trends.
Some grape colaspis injury is turning up in Arkansas where rice followed soybeans. Seed treatments are playing out in early rice that still hasn't gone to flood, giving the insect an opening.
Louisiana took a hit from flooding early in the month, too. Perhaps 1% of the crop will finally be lost. See comments by Dustin Harrell.
More rice started going to flood in Mississippi this week.
LOUISIANA CROP REPORTS
Johnny Saichuk, Consulting Agronomist, Ducks Unlimited, South Louisiana
"Some rice will be lost due to flooding, but I doubt if anyone would be interested in replanting rice, even if they could find seed. A lot of this year's seed was marginal, anyway, probably due to last year's terrible conditions. Germ was running 65% at times, so people had to increase seeding rates. And with weak germination, you tend to have low vigor.
"Rain amounts were all over the board from these storms. In one case the total hit 14 inches, while in other locations maybe a half-inch fell. With this last round of rain the totals in a lot of cases ran 6 to 9 inches.
"In certain areas the backwater is still going down. Among the farmers I work with, people were asking if rice would survive. Based on past experience, plenty depends on the size of the plants and whether the water was muddy or clear, plus whether temperatures were warm or cold. We were lucky that cool temperatures followed the rain, with some near-record lows for south Louisiana, and that probably saved some acres."
Dustin Harrell, Louisiana Rice Extension Specialist, LSU Rice Research Station, Crowley
"In most cases, the water has come off rice that was submerged during the flooding. Although that rice is really banged up, most of it will recover. All it needs is sunlight and better growing conditions.
"We do still have some rice that's under water (as of 5/11). That's a small sliver of our crop statewide, maybe 1%. I am not trying to make that seem insignificant. For the farmers who have that acreage, this flood will have a serious impact.
"I've now seen my first incident of cercospora for 2017. It's turned up really early, and I'm hoping this is an anomaly. The rice was at PD and the disease was pretty heavy in one field, so we recommended a 10 oz/acre shot of propiconazole. The field was south of Abbeville. We detected cercospora in a few other fields in the area, but the incidences were low in that rice.
"Most of south Louisiana's rice is at green ring and a lot of midseason applications are going out."