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Rice Update for the week of July 3, 2012
Author: Rick Cartwright, Associate Director, Agriculture and Natural Resources-Cooperative Extension Service

The Rice Update is a weekly summary of what’s happening and what to look for in rice production, based on interviews and submissions of rice experts in Arkansas and the Mid-South.

Weather:  We still need rain!  The trees are turning brown on ridges across Northwest Arkansas.


Dr. Bob Scott, Professor and Weed Scientist, Cooperative Extension Service:

The herbicide season for rice is rapidly winding down as many fields begin to head.  Across most of Arkansas rice is either heading or entering the boot stages.  This makes it too late for most herbicides to be applied and stay within pre-harvest intervals.  Some late season “revenge” treatments for grass are still going out, and a few applicatons of Grasp, Permit and Strada or Blazer are still going out for hemp sesbania (coffeebean) suppression.  It is important to remember at this time that rice is very sensitive to glyphosate drift.  Any glyphosate that gets on a rice plant during this reproductive time will cause short flag leaves and deformed seedheads and can be devastating to rice yields.  I have also walked a few rice fields with Liberty drift.  This can be very visual, but in our experience does not impact yield to the degree that glyphosate does.

Dr. Gus Lorenz, Professor and UA Division of Agriculture Extension Entomologist:

Rice stink bug is hitting treatment levels this week, but numbers are below average compared to the last two seasons.

Dr. Yeshi Wamishe, Asst Professor and UA Division of Agriculture Extension Plant Pathologist:

Delayed Phytotoxicity Syndrome or DPS is a phenomenon identified, studied and named by scientists at the LSU Ag Center, notably Dr. Don Groth, a number of years ago when patches of distorted and dying rice were noticed in fields consistently treated with Bolero herbicide.  After a number of trials, DPS in Louisiana was found to be associated with halogenated aromatic herbicides including including thiobencarb, quinclorac, triclopyr, propanil, and 2, 4-D.  It is caused by declorination of the benzene ring on the herbicide by soil microbes, producing a toxic (non selective) form taken up by rice.  Affected rice gets “sick” in patches after flooding for a period of time, with stunted, dark-green plants (photos), “fish-hooking” or various distortions of growing tillers (photo), excessive tillering, brittleness, and some or all of the patches may die if not drained.  Symptoms are similar to those associated with injury by the older herbicide, molinate and distortions distinguish the syndrome from phosphorus deficiency which can also result in stunted, dark green plants.  Draining to aerate the soil has been found to be the only practical salvage tool once the problem is noticed.  For fields with consistent problems, switching to other herbicide programs will help. (This paragraph provided by materials from Dr. Don Groth, LSU Rice Station).  Other reference:  Groth, D. E., D.E. Sanders, and G. Rich.  1999.  Delayed phytotoxicity syndrome of rice.  La. Agri.   13-14.

Patchy Distribution of DPS (AR, R. Cartwright)

Patchy Distribution of DPS (AR, R. Cartwright)

Dark Green stunted DPS plants on left in greenhouse (Don Groth, LSU AgCenter)

Dark Green stunted DPS plants on left in greenhouse (Don Groth, LSU AgCenter)









Other distortions and excessive tillering (AR, R. Cartwright)

Other distortions and excessive tillering (AR, R. Cartwright)

Severe fish-hooking of DPS plants (AR, R. Cartwright)

Severe fish-hooking of DPS plants (AR, R. Cartwright)

Scott Stiles, Extension Instructor and Economist

Last Friday the USDA released its Acreage report (Figure below).  It included acreage estimates based on survey data collected during the first two weeks of June.   Following the report, CME rice futures for the September contract lost 41.5 cents per hundred.  As of Tuesday’s close however, the September contract had recovered last Friday’s losses and settled ahead of the July 4th break at $14.995.

The grain complex had broad-based strength Tuesday with November soybeans making a new life of contract highs at $14.74.  September corn finished at $6.74.  Another thing to watch is July 2013 wheat.  It’s up $1.40 since June 15 and closed today at $8.22.  July 2014 wheat closed at $8.06.  With some much needed moisture, wheat could attract some attention this fall.  On another front, Gulf urea prices firmed up last week.  The rally in grains may be at work in the fertilizer markets. Consider that ahead of fall applications and wheat planting.

Arkansas and U.S. Rice Acreage 2011-2012

Arkansas and U.S. Rice Acreage 2011-2012

The surprise in the June Acreage report was the addition of rice acreage since the March Prospective Plantings report.  Arkansas added 80,000 long grain acres and another 10,000 medium grain acres since the March survey.  Total U.S. rice acreage was up 100,000 above the March intentions for a total of 2.661 million.  This compares to 2.689 million last year.   Longer term, the outlook for tighter U.S. long grain ending stocks is still in place over the coming year.  New crop basis offers are improving with bids today generally running from $1.10 to $1.40 per cwt. under September futures—which would net $6 per bushel or better at most locations.

Northeast Arkansas

Ron Baker, County Extension Agent, Clay County:

Our rice crop continues to develop well.  Overall, we have been able to maintain adequate flood levels in spite of the hot dry weather. About 10 to 15% of our fields are heading this week.  Disease and insect pressure remain unusually low.

Randy Chlapecka, County Extension Agent, Jackson County:

Overall, the crop still looks good, but we would obviously like for the temperatures to back down a few degrees.  The early rice is heading while we also have late rice that hasn’t reached PI yet.  Boot applications of N to the hybrids are being made.  Some propiconazole applications are being made to varieties rated VS to kernel smut.  Sheath blight doesn’t appear very active with the heat and dry conditions.  Stink bug numbers are fairly low. I swept a couple of the earliest heading fields and averaged 2 to 3 per 10 sweeps compared to 5 to 30 per 10 sweeps last year on the early stuff.  We identified a field with DPS a couple of weeks ago.  The field was drained for as long as it could be before it had to be reflooded as internode movement had begun. It appeared to be recovering at least somewhat.

Rick Thompson, Rice Consultant, Poinsett County:

We noted a bad field with root and crown rotting from what we have called hydrogen sulfide toxicity in the past.  Most fields in our area with these symptoms have been CL 151 for some reason.  Also, we will be treating a field of XL 753 for sheath blight as the disease progressed from 10% positive stops last week to 50% this week and in lush areas, it had progressed vertically several inches in only a few days.  The field is at the early to mid-booting stage.  This may be a rare situation where a new hybrid needs treatment for sheath blight; however, the progress of the disease in this field under conditions not overly favorable for development warrants closer scouting of XL 753 until we know more about its relative susceptibility to diseases under Arkansas conditions.

Central Arkansas

Brent Griffin, County Agent, Prairie County:

Rice is progressing along right on schedule; it seems that the DD50 that was running behind is catching up. The majority of the early rice, both hybrid and early CL lines are heading at this time. Stinkbugs are congregating in those early heading fields. Scouting reveals treatment threshold is not far off.
Water supply is really becoming an issue. Ten days ago we had all the water needed for crop—fast forward to today and we are counting the days of maintaining a flood on rice and final corn irrigation. We may not have any water for soybeans.  Sheath blight is coming up the semi-dwarfs and fungicide applications are being made to protect the flag leaf.  We are seeing alot of tip burn or dye back on flag leaves of Hybrid 723, 745 and 753.

Please direct all questions and comments to Dr. Rick Cartwright, who can be contacted at

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