The Challenge of Breeding New Crop Varieties in Louisiana

By Richard Bogren, LSU AgCenter

Louisiana’s subtropical environment poses challenges for the state’s agriculture industry. The state’s farmers grow sugarcane, which is pushing the northern edge of its subtropical range, along with rice and sweet potatoes, which are grown in only a few states. And other crops — the cereal grains wheat and oats — have particular challenges not found in northern areas where they’re grown extensively.