Cindy Inflicts Subtle but Real Damage to Coastal Rice07/03/2017
Dustin Harrell, Louisiana Rice Extension Specialist, reports that Cindy’s timing was unfortunate for rice in southwest Louisiana.
“In northeast Louisiana most of that rice is at least at midseason. A lot of the preflood fertilizer was delayed there because soils remained too wet to set up levees and/or apply fertilizer. In some fields this year there won’t be a big window between preflood and midseason nitrogen.
“In southwest Louisiana most of the rice is heading now. We saw a lot of effects from (Tropical Storm) Cindy. On one hand, we didn’t receive as much rain as initially predicted. In most gauges the total was 3 inches, maybe a little less, which was actually about the same amount of rain that fell in northeast Louisiana. We also didn’t have the expected flooding issues down here.
“However, the rain we did receive – plus the wind – hit flowering rice. That caused a lot of grain to go sterile. We’re seeing a good deal of brown discoloration associated with this. Most varieties are showing this, some more than others. A consultant referred to this as a bruising-type effect. It looks like bacterial panicle blight but isn’t.
“So the storm had a negative effect but not what we expected. Nobody can say how much all this hurt yields, although we’ll get a clearer idea in a few weeks.”