A week ago, we visited a rice grower in South Texas who said his long-grain crop was running behind. Now, more rain and more delays are making 2015 a muddy mess. Heavy rains earlier this year prevented Daniel Berglund from planting his long-grain rice on time. In fact, planting a month later than usual.
“It actually started last fall. We had a wet fall and October and November. That went into the spring. Our preparation was held up by the rain and when we did get it planted, we had excessive rain ever since then. This field was planted the first week of May but we’re just now dry enough tot put in the levees to irrigate the field,” said El Campo, Texas rice grower, Daniel Berglund.
It’s a challenge that started months ago. Now, a tropical storm brought a new blanket to water, tearing down levees. Berglund says if the dirt gets too thick, it could kill the rice. A situation that wouldn’t be as bad if the rice was taller and more mature.
“There will be spots where you don’t get the rain off as timely as you need to so we’ll have some weak stands because the standing waiting too long,” said Berglund.
Berglund says because of the rains, he’s also missed planting a second rice crop.
“This year, we’re too late for that. We won’t have a second harvest. It’s going to be tight. Production down and we’ll be limited to one crop in the area," said Berglund.
It’s the second crop that brings in majority of the income.
“The second crop, any profits from that, would be our profits for the year,” said Berglund.
Yet Berglund remains hopeful the rains stop. He can get back in the field to manage nutrients and control weeds in hopes of salvaging an otherwise frustrating year. Berglund told us since he received over 10 inches of rain in one month, he didn’t have to pump water this year to flush his first crop. Photo Credit: Daniel Berglund.