Focus On Fertility, Weed Control

Pete Baughman III
Baughman AG Consulting
Indianola, Mississippi

My dad, Pete Baughman Jr., was a consultant, so my first job was scouting rice and cotton. After graduating from Mississippi State University, I worked with him for a few years before starting my own consulting business in 2003.

We offer a variety of services, including grid soil sampling to generate fertility maps used to make variable-rate fertilizer applications. It’s important to keep fertility levels up to make as good a crop as you can. The two main things I preach are start clean and be timely with weed control and fertilizer applications.

We experienced a tough start to the 2019 rice-growing season. Wet weather delayed planting and made it difficult to make timely herbicide and fertilizer applications. Some areas also had to deal with the flooding issue, which resulted in prevented planting. But, despite these challenges, we still finished with an average to above-average crop.

This year, we are going through another wet spring. However, some of the rice ground was worked up last fall, which will help expedite planting once the fields dry out.

Broadleaf and Grass Control
The two most troublesome weeds in my area are ALS-resistant annual flatsedge and barnyardgrass. In fields where we have flatsedge issues, a pre-flood application of Loyant® herbicide provides good control.

I also have more row rice acres every year. Once the rice gets some size to it, we flood the bottom of the field but we don’t hold a flood at the top, which creates a challenge with pigweed and other broadleaf weeds. In a row rice system, we’ve found that Loyant does a good job of taking out these pests. Loyant also has a good fit on rice levees where pigweed is a problem.

On fresh-cut ground, especially where we’re planning to grow conventional rice, we apply herbicides at planting to start off clean. As soon as we get a stand (2- to 3-leaf rice), we come back with a tank mix of Clincher® SF and Prowl H2O herbicides. Because we are focusing on the grasses, the earlier we can make this application, the better. We also use Clincher SF around sensitive crops where we are limited by which herbicides can be applied by air.

One of the bright spots for 2020 is the rice price has increased somewhat from last year. Everything always goes smoother if farmers know they can make a little money in the end.

Pete Baughman III

  • B.S., ag pest management, Mississippi State University.
  • Consults on rice, corn, soybeans and a little cotton.
  • Member of the Mississippi Agricultural Consultants
    Association (MACA).
  • Member of the Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, Indianola, Mississippi.
  • Married to wife, Mary. Three daughters: Mary Katherine, Amelia and Lillie.
  • Enjoys spending time with family, hunting, fishing and participating in church activities.

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