AgFax Rice - Louisiana

By AgFax Media LLC,


A range of diseases are turning up in south Louisiana. Nothing would require a fungicide at this point, but symptoms are evident in limited instances. See comments by Dustin Harrell.

More damage assessments are coming in from parts of the upper Midsouth hit by flooding this month.

Tough decisions are being made or delayed about how to deal with weeds that have emerged in rice that already has been weakened by bad weather. While weeds and grass are emerging, nobody wants to hit rice with a treatment that could further set it back.


Richard Griffing, Griffing Consulting, LLC, Monterey, Louisiana

"My rice ranges from just emerging to 1,000 acres that has gone to flood. Most of the rice in between those two points is at 2 to 3 leaves. We're doing a lot of spraying now. Growing conditions have really improved. At one point we got 5 to 6 inches of rain in about a 10-day stretch, and the crop slowed down during that period. But with sunshine and wind, it didn't take long for things to dry up, and we're doing a little bit of flushing now (5/15)."

Harold Lambert, Independent Consultant, Innis, Louisiana

All of my rice is behind crawfish this year and a little was planted in the middle of last week."

Dustin Harrell, Louisiana Rice Extension Specialist, LSU Rice Research Station, Crowley

Our rice in south Louisiana is moving pretty quickly. Possibly, a very small amount of rice could be headed next week. The bulk is between green ring and half-inch internode.

"We're seeing some disease. It's nothing significant but you can find a gamut of common diseases – cercospora, sheath blight and blast. Again, none of this is at a high incidence – nothing you would warrant applying a fungicide. But disease is at least apparent, and we are moving into that part of the season when it can become a factor.

"Also, keep in mind that we had a little higher incidence of smut in some areas in 2016. You have to apply propiconazole as a preventive and the treatment must go on before the panicle emerges from the boot. If you treat after it emerges, you're too late. If you had false smut or black kernel smut last year and want to prevent it this year, that's your option.

"Be aware that a lot of rice is showing some degree of bronzing due to stress from either high water or high wind. Don't confuse this with cercospora symptoms. These plants maybe had some type of nutrient deficiency and then the stress triggered these symptoms. Don't immediately assume you need to apply a fungicide.

"I've also seen what I think is the first field this year with feeding activity by the South American rice miner (SARM). I haven't seen the actual pest but have checked out damage that is like we saw with it last year. It's considered a minor pest and we hardly see high incidences of it. But last year in southwest Louisiana we could find it in almost every field we entered.

"A quick reminder: several field days and related events are coming up, including the Vermilion Parish Rice Field Day on May 25, the Southwest Louisiana Rice Tour on May 31 and the Evangeline Parish Rice Field Day on June 1."