Are Rice Farmers Getting too Much Rain? - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Weiner, Arkansas -- Brandi Hodges Reports

Are Rice Farmers Getting too Much Rain?

May 10, 2005 -- Posted at 4:41 p.m. CDT

 

WEINER, AR -- Since mid-April, rice farmer Gary Sitzer's crops have received about 5 inches of rain.

 

“After going through the drought last year, it’s hard to turn rain down too much,” said Sitzer.

 

But are we getting too much?  

 

“Right now, of course, we’re getting a little too much, but compared to where we were with the drought, I think in all, it helped most of the rice farmers,” said Sitzer.

 

Even as a thunderstorm approaches, Sitzer welcomes the rain.

 

“From a rice farmers’ perspective, you know, you need to get a balanced amount.  Rice can certainly take too much water better than other crops,” said Sitzer.

 

Sitzer says the main problem isn't the amount of water on the crops, it's when we're getting the rain.

 

“I think what’s bothering most of them right now, are the ones that didn’t get their herbicide program engaged to where they took advantage of the showers.  Some didn’t get their crop planted, or they got the crop planted, but didn’t get their levees up,” said Sitzer.

  

Another problem, some farmers aren't able to plant their crops on time due to Mother Nature.

 

“It’s time to plant cotton, and the cotton guys are held up.  Of course, soy beans are the crop that needs to be getting in the ground shortly here too,” said Sitzer.

 

Too much rain on the fields isn't a major problem yet, but if the rain continues it could change very quickly.

  

“We’ve been so dry, that most of the rivers have not overflowed the banks extensively yet,” said Sitzer.

  

But, when and if that does happen, many crops could take a turn for the worse.

 

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