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Agriculture

Rice and Soybean Farmers Prepping For The New Year

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Ann Kenda
/
ARKANSAS PUBLIC MEDIA
Rice and soybean farmers gather at the Rice Festival Building in Weiner on Jan. 14 to learn about the best practices for 2019.

Rice and soybean farmers looking ahead to this year’s spring planting season got some tips for success from experts with the University of Arkansas’s Cooperative Extension Service.  Agronomists, entomologists and others spoke at a Rice and Soybean Production conference at Weiner’s Rice Festival Building on Monday to advise farmers on the best practices going into the new year. Topics included soil fertility, insect management and weed control, all of which can impact a farm’s bottom line.

Soil fertility specialist Dr. Chuck Wilson said a farm’s profitability is protected by finding a good balance.

“We don’t want to over-fertilize or under-fertilize.  Over-fertilizations leads to, obviously, environmental issues.  Under-fertilization leads to low crop production,” he said.

Dr. Glenn Studebaker, an extension entomologist, urged rice and soybean farmers working on their budgets for 2019 to account for at least a few insecticide applications, since destructive pests common to rice and soybeans can wreak havoc on yield.

“We’re seen 50-percent yield loss or greater, if they are not controlled,” he said.

UAEX offers a similar meeting for cotton and corn producers at Dixie Gin in Trumann on Friday, Jan. 18 from 9am – noon.

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Credit Ann Kenda / ARKANSAS PUBLIC MEDIA
/
ARKANSAS PUBLIC MEDIA
Entomologist Glenn Studebaker speaks to rice and soybean farmers about the importance of budgeting for insecticide applications to help protect their crops.