April 10, 2015 No. 2015-7
Dr. Jarrod Hardke
On Monday the USDA planting progress report showed Arkansas at 6% planted. This represents a contrast between the northern and southern halves of the state. Prior to the report, an estimate may have been that 20% of rice is planted south of I-40 and <5% north of I-40.
As of today (4/10), maybe as much as 40% of rice acres have been planted in the southern half of the state (ranging from finished to just starting). In the northern half of the state that number is likely 5% planted. Of that 5% in the north, the majority is in the southernmost counties.
Overnight rainfall was kind to some and downright mean to others. In certain areas a half inch of rain or less was received while some locations received as much as 4 inches – topping new levees in some cases. Some may be able to get back in the field quickly if they were already dry. The current forecast is for statewide rainfall on Monday, but we can only hope it’s a small amount that falls. Fortunately, after that the forecast has cleared up for the rest of the week with only small scattered chances.
There have been plenty of questions these days about performance based on planting date. Results of planting date studies from a single year can be misleading – especially if you look at 2014 alone – an interesting year to say the least. Looking at long-term averages is a safer bet when making these types of decisions. If we knew exactly what kind of summer we were going to have it would make things much easier. Right now I’d be happy knowing what kind of next week we’re going to have.
On the note of long-term averages, in Figure 1 are the yield results from planting date studies in 2004-2014 at the Rice Research & Extension Center near Stuttgart. A quick explanation – for planting dates in a given year, the top yielding date is called 100% and the rest of the planting dates are a percentage based off the date that was 100%. The overall take-home message is that rice planted prior to May 1 has an excellent chance to attain 90-100% of grain yield potential. Rice planted after that date can still achieve successful yields, but luck starts to outweigh preparation. Basically, it’s not yet time to hit the panic button – if the weather doesn’t provide a good planting window in the next couple of weeks that may change, but for now there’s still time.
Figure 1. 2004-2014 Percent of Optimum Grain Yield by Planting Date.
Managing Seed Rots and Seedling Diseases of Rice
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