Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘charlie fontenot’

 

 I had some technical difficulties with the blog last week, so this posting is a little delayed.  Also, before you get into it, I’d like to talk about more insect problems. The dry conditions are continuing to create headaches. I’ve had about 5 more calls about chinch bugs, rice levee bill bugs in rice. Some are reporting successful control with a spray of pyrethroid to control the insects. I would caution you to avoid using an insecticide unless you can confirm the presence of the insect causing injury. There are some mystery problems out there and it is easy to blame insects in some cases.

 

The bottom line is that if you can’t find any insects causing injury, then there is no point paying for an insecticide application.I know it is hard to scout in the wind and the dry conditions. Scouting early in the morning will increase your chances of finding chinch bugs in rice. Also, scouting the vegetation of the edges of the field – particularly sweeping grasses with a sweep net – is another good scouting method for chinch bugs. Tomorrow we will be in Vermilion Parish for a morning meeting and a walk with Dr. Saichuk at the verification field. In the afternoon, we will head to Jefferson-Davis Parish to scout some of these fields that are/have suffered injury from chinch bugs, rice levee bill bugs, and/or colaspis.

 
St. Landry Parish Vince Deshotel and Anna taking plant heights.   
 

 

St. Landry Parish rice water weevil demonstration site field map.
 
After we found colaspis in Jefferson-Davis Parish last week, we headed over to St. Landry to take stand data at Charlie Fontenot’s farm. We met with Valent company representatives Karen Arthur, John Bordlee and Bill Odle to discuss this location and the other sites.  Charlie Fontenot, Crop Consultant Dean Reed and County Agent Vince Deshotel also met us at the field. We did not notice any obvious visual differences between treatments, but all treatments looked a little better than the untreated. We will report the overall stand observations once we have take data at all sites.  

 
 
 All plots are marked with colored flagging, so feel free to contact County Agent Vince Deshotel if you’d like to drive by and visit the test site.

 

Bill Odle, Dean Reed, John Bordlee and Charlie Fontenot examining the stand at the St. Landry Parish demo location.

 

Plants grown from NipsitInside to the left and Dermacor X-100 to the right.
Plants grown from untreated rice seed to the left and CruiserMaxx treated plants to the right.

 We intend to plant our last site – located in Avoyelles Parish – on Wednesday. We will take stand data at the Calcasieu site on Thursday. Busy week of field work ahead!

 

Read Full Post »

Last week we planted the rice water weevil demonstration test sites in Evangeline and St. Landry Parish. Both locations are the hybrid variety XL745. At each location we will be comparing the seed treatments CruiserMaxx, Dermacor X-100 and NipsitInside to an untreated check.

Drilling the strip trial at Fontenot farm in St. Landry Parish.Rice was planted using a 42 foot wide drill pulled by a John Deere.GPS monitoring of planting plots.

The GPS monitoring system was used to line up each of the strips – each treatment was replicated twice across the field.

Drill rows in the field.

Charlie will be growing 1200 acres of rice this year.  This is the last bit of rice he is planting for this season.  Soil conditions were ideal for drilling.  A nearby field has been planted in a Horizon Ag strip trial to evaluate varieties.

LSU AgCenter County Agent Vince Deshotel vacuuming treated seed out of the drill between treatments.

Vince Deshotel vacuumed out the drill between treatments.  We also gathered seed samples and will send them off for analysis to confirm the rate of insecticide applied to the seed.

Dean Reed, Charlie Fontenot and Vince Deshotel after successfully planting our test plots.

We greatly appreciate the help of Dean Reed, Charlie Fontenot and Vince Deshotel in planting this demonstration test site.  Without excellent on-farm cooperators our programs would lack the depth on “real-world” situations. We will let you know when the rice emerges.

Read Full Post »

This week we’ve continued to travel the state and meet with cooperators for the LSU AgCenter rice water weevil (rww) demonstration test. In case you are a new reader to the blog, you can read more about rww at http://bit.ly/haGduU. You can also see a video on how to scout for rice water weevil adults and larvae at this website: http://bit.ly/gUJe8R

RWW are the most important insect pest of rice in Louisiana. Adults enter fields either before or after permanent flood.  Injury begins when adults feed on plant leaves making longitudinal scars. If scarring is excessive the field will sometimes have the appearance of being “painted” with white paint. In some instances adult feeding can be severe enough to merit an insecticide spray before application of permanent flood. Mating commences soon after adults enter the field, but oviposition of eggs occurs after application of permanent flood. Larvae hatch from eggs, feed briefly within the leaf sheath, and then swim through the flood water to burrow into the mud and begin feeding on the roots of the rice plant. This larval feeding on the roots is the primary source of damage caused by rice water weevils when they attack the rice plant. In some cases, root pruning can be so severe that plants will fall over in the field. In other cases, root pruning in not severe enough to cause lodging, but can still significantly reduce yield.

The purpose of our rice water weevil demonstration test is to compare currently recommended insecticides on commercial farms in Louisiana. This year we are restricting our test to comparison of three insecticide seed treatments (CruiserMaxx, Dermacor X-100 and NipsitINSIDE) which will be compared to an untreated check. These products were described in my last blog posting, so I won’t spend a lot of time describing them here.

Yesterday we met with Farmer Charlie Fontenot, Crop Consultant Dean Reed, and County Agent Vince Deshotel in St. Landry Parish. Charlie cooperated with us last year, and his farm had the most severe rice water weevil pressure of all locations. It will be interesting to see what we find this year. Charlie intends to plant XL745 at a seeding rate of 25 lbs per acre. We will plant two passes (reps) of each seed treatment, which will be compared to an untreated check. There is a good chance that we will plan a field meeting at this site sometime later this summer. We anticipate planting in mid-March.

After we completed our discussion about demo test plans, Bruce Schultz joined us to interview Charlie Fontenot for a feature story in Louisiana Farm and Ranch. Charlie was honored as St. Landry Parish Farmer of the Year for 2010. An accomplishment that he certainly deserves. Charlie has ramped up his production over the last few years and runs a beautiful operation in St. Landry. Look for the story in next month’s issue of Louisiana Farm and Ranch.

Today we met with Farmer Wes Simon (and his son Ethan), Crop Consultant Rustin Gilder, and County Agent Barrett Courville in Acadia Parish. 

County Agent Barrett Courville, Farmer Wes Simon and I discussing plans at the field in Acadia Parish.

This is our first year working with Wes and his father Glen.  Wes intends to plant either XL729 or XL745 at a seeding rate of 22 lbs per acre. 

Wes Simon measuring out the plot size with his tractor.

The planting arrangement will be the same as at Charlie’s farm – two passes for each seed treatment which will be compared to an untreated check. Depending on the weather this weekend, Wes will probably plant sometime next week. There is a good chance we will have a tour stop here in conjunction with the LSU AgCenter south farm tour this summer.

After we left Wes, we headed over to Calcasieu Parish to meet with Farmer Mark Stelly, Landowner Johnny Hensgens, Crop Consultant Randy Verret and County Agents Jimmy Meaux and Dusty Zaunbrecher. 

County Agents Jimmy Meaux, Dusty Zaunbrecher, Farmer Mark Stelly, and Johnny Hensgens discussing plans for the demo test site.

Plans for the demo field site in this parish will be very similar to our set-up in Acadia Parish. Mark intends to plant XL745 at a seeding rate of 25 pounds per acre.  Again, depending on the weather, this site will be planted sometime before early April.

Now we are headed to Breaux Bridge for their annual winter rice production meeting at 6 pm tonight at the St. Martin Parish LSU AgCenter office. I’ll discuss seed treatments for rice water weevil management.

All photos taken by Anna Meszaros.

Read Full Post »

If you are wondering why I’ve been a little quiet lately, it’s because we’ve been busy cutting test plots and gathering harvest data.  After long days in this horrendous heat, it’s hard to find a desire to sit at a computer and write. This morning it was so dark outside that I tried to fool myself into think it was a nice, cold winter storm – no such luck. 
I’ll wait until all the numbers are in to make any comments about the effect of treatments on yields.  In the meantime, I thought you might like to see some equipment in action.  The best part of harvest is that it really is a gathering of friends.

Dean Reed (Helena), Sunny Bottoms (HorizonAg) and Vince Deshotel (LSU AgCenter) waiting in the shade near the weigh wagon. Charlie was busy trimming the edges so we could cut our passes.

 

The first step is to trim the edges of the field so that we are harvesting from a measurable area and can calculate accurate yields. 

Combine in the background is trimming the edges, and in the direct line of the camera you can see that the front edge has been trimmed to make a clean starting line for the pass.

 

The second step is to run a pass up the treated area. 

The combine is about to finish the first pass in the untreated area.

 

Along the way, the header is cutting the head (panicle) off the rice plant and separating the hull (containing the grain) from the straw.  The grains are collected in the hopper and the straw is ejected out the back of the combine. 

Rice panicle and straw being cut and pulled into the combine - there is a rotating pair of belts that moves the grain and stalk into the combine for sorting.

 

Rice entering the combine hopper - sorry some of these pictures are dusty, but this is dirty work!

 

After the pass is completed, the rice is transferred from the combine into the weigh wagon. 

Combine lined up with the weigh wagon to empty the rice out of the hopper and calculate the yield.

 

The weight, grain moisture, and temperature of grain are recorded.  Then the contents of the weigh wagon are emptied into a grain cart to get ready for the next round. 

The rice is emptied from the weigh wagon into the grain cart.

 

In the meantime, someone else has the physical job (which was tough in that extreme heat yesterday) of measuring the length of the harvested area.  This is measured with a wheel.  Dean Reed was walking the wheel in this picture. 

Dean Reed using a wheel to measure the harvested area. 

This process is repeated until you complete the harvest.  

Birds are often attracted to the combine and are real daredevils as they dive and dodge for grasshoppers, frogs and other critters. 

Rice and soybean farmer Charlie Fontenot anticipates that he will be harvesting for more than 20 days straight to get all the rice cut and then roll into soybean harvest.  We thank him for participating in this variety trial and demonstration test.  The rice we harvested will be fertilized and flooded up for second crop. 

Charlie Fontenot operating his Case combine.

Read Full Post »

Yesterday we planted two demonstration sites.  We started bright and early at Charlie Fontenot’s farm in St. Landry Parish.  Michael Fruge and Sunny Bottoms (both with Horizon Ag) brought their 20 foot Great Plains drill out to the site.  Vince Deshotel met me a the farm office and told me that he had received a call from Kent Guillory telling us that Dave Morein decided to plant his colaspis test site that afternoon.  So, it turned out to be a full day of rice planting. The weather could not have been better and the blue skies with white fluffy clouds were breathtaking.

Planting started with two passes of CL151 seed that was not treated with an insecticide.  This untreated area borders the field road and is next to a marshy area with trees.  There is a good chance that if weevils are overwintering, they will be found near this edge of the field.

After two passes of untreated seed, we cleaned out the drill, and loaded sacks of Dermacor X-100 treated CL151.  6 passes of Dermacor treated seed was planted at the 65 lb seeding rate.  The drill was cleaned out again and loaded up with CL151 treated with CruiserMaxx.  At this point, we started planting a seeding rate trial.  CL151 was planted at a variety of seeding rates.  This will give us a chance to evaluate CL151 at different seeding rates, and also the efficacy of CruiserMaxx at a variety of seeding rates.

This site was chosen because Charlie is suspicious that he experienced stand loss from Colaspis larvae damaging seedlings last season.  If the colaspis show up this season, we will be able to compare Dermacor X-100 and CruiserMaxx activity against this pest.  Also, in the past Charlie has treated with pyrethroids for weevil management.  We are curious to see what the rww population is typically like at this site.  Of course, this year may not be a typical year.  That remains to be seen.

I asked Charlie to call me when first emergence of seedlings is observed.  We’ll take observations on date of first emergence, and then stand counts and plant height 14 days after emergence.  If colaspis are a problem in this field, the damage will be observed in those first few weeks after emergence.

We left Charlie’s at about 11 am to head over to Evangeline Parish.  On the way Dave called, because there had been a break-down and planting would be delayed until about 2 or 3 pm.  No problem, we just took our time heading east.  When the time was right, we headed over to meet Dave Morein, Brian (Dave’s son who is now farming with him full-time), and Dennis Fontenot (Consultant).  When we pulled up dark clouds were threatening and rain started sprinkling lightly as we were planting the last field.

This series of fields is bordered on three sides by Miller Lake and a thick stand of trees.  Historically, there are high populations of rice water weevils.  Dennis had scouted this field site for us last season to monitor the adult colaspis in a field of beans next to a cut of rice that had substantial stand loss from colaspis damage.  In this test we will again compare an untreated check to CruiserMaxx and Dermacor X-100 seed treatment.

When we arrived, Dave had some Dermacor X-100 treated seed still loaded in the drill. left-over from planting another field.  We vacuumed out the hopper and loaded untreated seed.  This series of fields is planted in CLXL729 at a 25 lb seeding rate.  In our test, we are comparing an untreated field, and two passes on the south side of a neighboring cut (both are the high points in this area) to Dermacor X-100, and CruiserMaxx treated fields.

We will be scouting intensively during the first two weeks after emergence to see if the colaspis larvae overwintered and may cause damage in the rice.  Dennis had GPS marked his sampling sites in the untreated rice field and we will mark those with flags and sample the area for larvae.  It will be interesting to see if there is a relationship between the adult colaspis population in the soybeans last season, and the population of colapsis larvae in the  seedling rice this season.

I’m not sure what transpired with the rain that was just starting to come down when we left the field.  I’ll be checking in with Kenneth LaHaye this afternoon.  Tentative plans are to plant at the LaHaye farm in Evangeline Parish tomorrow.  Of course, it all depends on the weather.  We also may plant in Acadia, Concordia, and Evangeline Parish this week.

Sorry I did not include pictures, I need to load my download cable in my camera bag.  I’ll try to add pictures in the next few days.

Read Full Post »