Experts from the Department of Agriculture-Philippine Rice Research Institute (DA-PhilRice) encourage rice farmers to make sure that their crops get sufficient nutrients from tillering to early panicle initiation and flowering.
Sandro D. Cañete, science research specialist of PhilRice’s Agronomy, Soils and Plant Physiology Division, emphasized the importance of proper nutrient management during a recent PalayAralan session aired through the Institute’s facebook page.
“Rice crops yield more if they get the right nutrients in their right amount in every stage of their development,” he said.
He added that farmers need to know the right element, amount, and timing of fertilizer application.
“Giving the right nutrients can lessen cost of production and helps in the attainment of target yield. Moreover, too much or too little fertilizer will not benefit the crop. The right timing of fertilizer application should also be observed to increase efficiency in input cost and nutrient uptake,” he explained.
According to him, nutrient requirements of the rice crop can be known based on visual observation of deficiency symptoms, results of nutrient diagnostic and decision support tools, and other available information such as data obtained from extension workers or rice specialists.
He detailed things that farmers can observe to detect on their own whether their crop’s nutrients are sufficient or not.
“Nutrients are sufficient if the crop’s growth and panicle development are uniform, which can lead to the attainment of the crop’s yield potential. High yield is achieved if there are at least 300 panicles/m2 for transplanted or 350 panicles/m2 for direct-wet seeded at dough stage,” he elaborated.
On the other hand, slow growth, less tillers and panicles, fewer seeds, and low grain weight can be observed if nutrients are insufficient; while pest damage, lodging, and pollution can be noticed if nutrients are excessive, he stressed.
“With properly managed nutrients, farmers can achieve high yield and high profit, while environment damage is reduced,” Cañete concluded.
Browse https://web.facebook.com/rice.matters/videos/335187160879953 to watch this PalayAralan session.