Horizon Ag: Mixed Bag Reported as Rice Harvest Activity Gains Steam

South Louisiana and Texas

The challenges of 2019 continue! I just can’t say this enough, but this has been the most challenging year I have ever seen in my career. The harvest has pretty much come to a standstill over the past several days because of rain. We are stuck in a rainy pattern because of tropical moisture coming out of the Gulf. However, we haven’t gotten what we could have because the heaviest rains have stayed in the Gulf.

Yields are down considerably this year compared to last season. As a state, I would think Louisiana is off at least 20% on average, although that percentage varies depending on the area you are in. Some areas may only be off 10%, but there are some down 30%. The yields in Texas are not much better. From what I have been told, yields there are off at least 15%. It doesn’t seem to matter what you grew this year, varieties or hybrids — the yields are down.

The one variety that doesn’t seem to be off as much as everything else is Provisia® variety PVL01. Most of the yields I have heard on PVL01 have been in the upper 30s to low 40s, which isn’t far off of the yields from last year. I would say PVL01 is a little under 10% down. The ratoon crop so far has been a mixed bag. Most of it is coming back very well but is just very slow. I have been asked several times what I think is the cause of the low yields and the slower-than-normal stubble regrowth. To be honest with you, I’m not sure about either.

Mother Nature just got the best of us this year. On April 23, I wrote a field report where I said we were finally getting 100% stands on fields that were planted a month earlier. When you have a crop that starts off this way, you need really good growing conditions throughout the year to make things work out. Well, we did not have that this year, and the end results are more reflective of our early stands.

Michael Fruge
District Field Representative
(832) 260-6193

Mississippi and North Louisiana

Harvest is starting to progress in my territory as rice is beginning to dry down. Last week (8/21), some of the earliest planted fields were cut, but it seemed like the majority of folks I talked to were either cutting samples or in and out of the tops chasing moisture. There was sporadic precipitation Sunday (8/25) and Monday (8/26) across Mississippi and North Louisiana. The forecast shows rain chances Tuesday for Mississippi and Tuesday and Wednesday for North Louisiana. The following 10 days appear to be favorable.

The yields I have heard reported so far have been all over the board. After the precipitation early in the week, harvest progress should pick up significantly. Please don’t hesitate to call If you have any questions or if I can help in any way.

Tim Jett
District Field Representative
(901) 687-6362