LSU AgCenter experts offer rice farmers tips on upcoming season

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WELSH, La. (LSU AgCenter) – Rice farmers preparing for the 2020 crop heard recently from LSU AgCenter experts about what they should be considering before they get into the fields.

The meetings were held in Welsh, Vidrine and Crowley, and more are scheduled.

Don Groth, resident coordinator of the LSU AgCenter H. Rouse Caffey Rice Research Station, said the medium-grain variety Titan has been accepted by the Kellogg Co. for its products. Groth said acreage of that variety probably will increase.

Groth said he also expects to see an acreage increase for furrow-irrigated rice, also called row rice, because the practice can now be covered by crop insurance. The practice uses polypropylene pipe to irrigate fields before they dry. “Sometimes it saves you water, sometimes it doesn’t,” he said.

Wet weather last year encouraged disease development. “It was a bad disease year, but we’ve had worse,” he said.

Smut disease in south Louisiana was particularly bad, and Groth anticipates it will be a problem again this year.

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