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Delta Farm Press
by Jarrod Hardke, Rice Extension Agronomist - May 20, 2022
“He said ‘It don’t do men no good to pray for peace and rain.’”
The end is near! For rice planting that is. The state was reported as 76% planted
as of 5/16, but I would wager we were even further along than that based on what I
have been seeing. It has been another strong week of finishing up planting, and a
few more acres being considered as a result of rice price action this week ($8 rice!
At one point anyway).
Not only are we approaching the Final Planting Date for Prevented Planting, but it
appears we’re going to swim our way to it. Fig. 1 shows the 7-day precipitation forecast, with the majority of the state expected to
get 3-5 inches of rain over the coming week. Of that amount, about an inch is expected
Saturday night and the remainder to arrive on Tuesday and Wednesday.
So for those fields having gone to flood already, or those with levees butted getting
ready to go, be prepared to cut those levees. It hurts to write that. Especially
since quite a few fields have needed to be flushed the past two weeks – meaning levees
are already butted and really don’t need a big rain. Let’s hope that even if the
total amount is high, that it falls slow enough for things to drain and not mess up
fields and levees.
As mentioned before, flushing has been necessary of late and the high temps and high
winds have us wanting a rain, just not a flood. To add insult to the pending rain
event, winds are so high for these days preceding the upcoming rain that getting out
preemergence herbicides has been a pipe dream. Monday may provide a window to get
some aerial applications before the big rain event, but how much will be left if rain
amounts really are that high? Difficult decision time – spend money on a PRE that
may not be there long at all, or skip it and hope you don’t have a jailbreak following
the big rain.
I feel like we’ve crossed the 1-million-acre mark for the state and could settle in around
1.1-million-acres. I’ve been getting that question a lot lately, so right or wrong,
I put it in writing so you can hold me to it. It is just a guesstimation based on
what I’m seeing around the state and hearing from folks.
New on Arkansas Row Crops Radio this week:
Weeds AR Wild Series, S2 Ep 14: Rainfall for residuals, How much and how long?
Fig. 1. NOAA 7-day precipitation forecast.
Fig. 2. Arkansas Rice Planting Progress, 2010-2022.
Table 1. U.S. Rice Planting Progress, 2022.
When entering fields into the DD50 Rice Management Program (https://dd50.uada.edu/), you won’t always find the cultivar you’re looking for. This is usually a situation
where we don’t have sufficient data yet (or any) to support entering it, or an older
cultivar has been removed.
For newer cultivars that you may be growing that aren’t in the program, I recommend
selecting a cultivar that should have a similar maturity to provide some guidance,
but we still have to be careful. One example would be RT 7331 MA – it’s not in the
program but you could enter it as RT XP753 or RT 7321 FP and still likely be within a few days of accuracy for key timings. HOWEVER – I highly recommend if
you do this that you enter the correct cultivar name as part of the field name to help avoid confusion, especially if you are using a cultivar that is a different
herbicide technology. For instance, if your field name is “Home 80”, then put “Home
80 (RT 7331 MA)” so that ends up printed at the top of the page. It’s really a good
policy to do that on all your fields just for added confirmation.
If you’re uncertain about which cultivar to use as a fill-in, please reach out and
we’ll try to direct you to the closest one. Remember that this will keep you in the
ballpark, but just because the time to heading is similar doesn’t mean that the timing
through other stages is the same – they can and will vary.
Emergence date drives the accuracy of the DD50 program – generally speaking once you
have a stand of rice above the ground – even just spiking – that’s your emergence
date. You want to lean on the early side rather than the late side with this date
to be sure you’re ahead of predicted timings and not behind.
Remember that the DD50 program updates daily throughout the season, so if temperatures
change dramatically compared with historical weather data, the reports will start
to deviate and you’ll need to run a new report.
The DD50 program works off of historical weather data to predict when we’ll reach
the timings listed in reports. However, every morning it replaces the previous day’s
historical weather data with the actual weather data for the previous day – so it’s
accuracy can increase as the season goes along, especially when dealing with extreme
weather patterns. If you sign up for email or text alerts, you’ll be notified when
you’re approaching key growth stages based on the most up-to-date weather data.
A teacher once told me a story about their first job where their manager told them
“to be early is to be on time, to be on time is to be late, and to be late is to be
fired.” I like to keep that idea in mind for timeliness of rice management – rice is extremely
forgiving, but it does have its limits.
It’s time to run those DD50 reports to confirm where you are on preflood nitrogen
(N) timing (DD50 Rice Management Program). Rice is hitting its stride and the earliest planted fields in the state are just
starting to be taken to flood. Many more will soon follow with the amount of heat
we’ve experienced over the last couple of weeks.
I want to encourage everyone to try and start on time, as much of the rice will be
getting ready very quickly. Rice planted within the last 10 days has only taken about
6 days to emerge and it’s coming on strong, meaning it will be reaching the stage
for preflood N faster than you may expect.
Many still aren’t utilizing Multiple Inlet Rice Irrigation (MIRI) on levee fields,
but this is the year to get in the game. Water and pumping costs savings of 25-30%
are real, with some reporting as much as 40-50% savings. Given the costs of fuel
this year, it’s a great time to take advantage of this practice to save money and
accomplish a faster, more uniform flood.
Back to the N. Based on the DD50 program, we have the early/optimum preflood window
and also the Final Recommended Time to Apply Preflood N. Once you’ve entered the
optimum window we’re good to go anytime, though different conditions and management
may have you postpone the start of flooding (such as rice height being on the short
side). The final recommended date is one to focus on – preferably we’re incorporating
preflood N by this date, but there is some buffer time built in past that to allow
for fields that take longer to flood.
Next week we’ll start digging into N rates and strategies.
Table 2. Final recommended date to apply preflood nitrogen for selected cultivars
based on emergence date in Arkansas County.
RT 7321 FP
Table 3. Final recommended date to apply preflood nitrogen for selected cultivars
based on emergence date in Poinsett County.
“WILD” best describes this week’s trading in the rice market. As of Thursday’s close,
the week’s trading range for the September contract had been $1.28/cwt. The week
started with relatively heavy volume and very wide trading ranges. Monday we saw
the September ’22 contract push to a new high of $18.19 ½ ; very close to the September
2011 high of $18.25 ½. Tuesday offered more of the same with volume close to 600
contracts (significant in rice trading at least) and a wide $1.03 trading range that
extended up to $18.08.
Fig. 3. CME September Rice Futures, 15-Year Monthly Chart.
The rice market started the week trying to figure out what’s next in global grain
trade. Last Friday, May 13, the Indian government announced a ban on wheat exports,
effective immediately. The decision stems from a smaller-than-expected wheat harvest.
This poses some food security risks to India. It’s very likely those in the rice
market were wondering early week if export bans or possibly quotas, may later extend
to other grains.
Also, there were a few large international inquiries for rice this week. South Korea
issued a tender to purchase around 136,000 tons of rice. Egypt was in the market
for at least 25,000 tons of milled rice.
Progress in Midsouth planting put pressure on the rice market Tuesday/Wednesday with
lower closes both days. However, the September contract closed almost 20 cents higher
Thursday at $17.23. As of Friday morning, new crop rice bids were in the $7.65 to
$7.70/bu. range for fall delivery to mills around eastern Arkansas. Fall delivery
bids at driers were in the $7.50 to $7.60/bu range.
One news item of interest this week was the announcement by the Russian government
to extend fertilizer export quotas from June 1 until at least December 2022.
New Orleans (NOLA) urea is trading about $15/ton lower this week. Phosphate from
China is gradually moving into Brazil. Potash and phosphate prices were $30 to $45/ton
lower this week at NOLA and further inland.
The DD50 Rice Management Program is live and ready for fields to be enrolled for the
2022 season. All log-in and producer information has been retained from the 2021
season, so if you used the program last year you can log in just as you did last year.
Log in and enroll fields here: https://dd50.uada.edu.
The Arkansas Rice Advisor site https://riceadvisor.uada.edu functions like an app on your mobile device. There you can readily access the DD50
program, rice seeding rate calculator, drill calibration, fertilizer and N rate calculators,
publications, and more.
Arkansas Rice Updates are published periodically to provide timely information and
recommendations for rice production in Arkansas. If you would like to be added to
this email list, please send your request to firstname.lastname@example.org.
This information will also be posted to the Arkansas Row Crops blog (http://www.arkansas-crops.com/) where additional information from Extension specialists can be found.
More information on rice production, including access to all publications and reports,
can be found at http://www.uaex.uada.edu/rice.
We sincerely appreciate the support for this publication provided by the rice farmers
of Arkansas and administered by the Arkansas Rice Research and Promotion Board.
The authors greatly appreciate the feedback and contributions of all growers, county
agents, consultants, and rice industry stakeholders.
Rice Extension Agronomist
Extension Weed Scientist
Rice Verification Coordinator
Extension Soil Fertility
Extension Rice Pathologist