Wednesday, June 23, 2010

June 23 Rice Crop Condition and Progress

As of June 20, all of the rice in Arkansas has emerged. Early rice should be heading within the next 2 weeks. This means that the optimum timing for sheath blight and kernel smut fungicides is approaching. As of June 20, 20% of the crop is reported to be in excellent condition, 50% good, 26% fair, and 4% poor.

Average temperatures were above normal ranging from 4 degrees above normal at Texarkana to 8 degrees above normal at several locations for the week ending June 20. The temperatures ranged from a low of 64 degrees at Calico Rock to a high of 101 degrees at El Dorado and Eudora. This completes 4 straight weeks and 5 of the last 6 weeks with temperatures significantly above normal. Rainfall for the week ending June 20 ranged from none at several locations to a high of 1.53 inches at Harrison. Overall, soil moisture supplies were 13% very short, 47% short, 38% adequate, and 2% surplus. The extended heat and dry weather have caused a significant strain on the irrigation capacity across the Delta. Rice fields have spots (some large, some small) that are burning because the well is unable to keep up with the dry weather. The impact of this heat will be significant if the weather pattern continues after the rice begins heading.

The National Weather Service publishes a national drought monitor weekly on the web. To view this site, go to:  This site provides a map that illustrates the level of drought in the various regions of the US.

Very early estimates suggest that CL 151 is the most widely planted variety so far (about 23% of the acreage). The next most widely planted varieties are Rice Tec CL XL 745 (18%), Wells (16%), and Jupiter (12%). These numbers are preliminary and may change as we get more information available.

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