UACES Facebook Arkansas rice growers in closer to planting completion
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Arkansas rice growers closer to planting completion

By Mary Hightower

U of a System Division of Agriculture

 Fast facts

  • Rice planting almost done
  • Some earlier-planted rice fields moving to flood

(200 words)

(Newsrooms: With art at )

LITTLE ROCK – Farmers in the nation’s top rice-growing state worked into the night and through the weekend to overcome rain delays and inch closer to completion of planting. 

5-7-16 Repulling Levees
REDO -- Some Arkansas farmers spent the weekend of May 7-8 working to catch up on planting delayed by rain or to make repairs to storm-damaged fields. Here, a northeast Arkansas producer works to redo rice levees washed out by heavy rain. Taken May 7, 2016. (Image courtesy Scott Matthews. CREDIT MANDATORY) .

Rice was 93 percent planted and 82 percent had emerged, according to Monday’s report from the National Agricultural Statistics Service.

“There’s not a lot of progress left to be made in terms of rice planting,” Jarrod Hardke, extension rice agronomist for the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture, said Monday.

“Those with much left worked all the way through the weekend to get fields in that were anywhere close to dry enough. Some were even planting as it started to rain some last evening,” he said.

“The move now turns to rice fields going to flood starting this week where the rice is older and the ground is dry enough to fertilize properly,” Hardke said. “The next dry period we get after this week will see many put the finishing touches on rice planting and a very large amount of acreage will be ready to go to flood.”

Hardke is forecasting that Arkansas farmers will grow 1.6 million acres of rice this year. 

The NASS report covers the week ending Sunday. NASS is part of the United States Department of Agriculture.

For more information on crop production, visit,, or contact your county extension office.

The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture offers all its Extension and Research programs and services without regard to race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, religion, age, disability, marital or veteran status, genetic information, or any other legally protected status, and is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer.

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Media Contact: Mary Hightower
Dir. of Communication Services
U of A Division of Agriculture
Cooperative Extension Service
(501) 671-2126

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