The forum begins with registration at 1:30 p.m. in the Rayville Civic Center.

Among the speakers will be Steve Linscombe, an LSU AgCenter rice breeder and regional director for southeastern Louisiana. He will provide an update on rice varieties.

In addition, LSU AgCenter researcher Pat Bollich will talk about fertility, followed by a weed control discussion by Bill Williams of the LSU AgCenter.

"I'll be talking about the annual grasses, such as barnyardgrass and Amazon sprangletop, as well as alligator weed and red rice," Williams said, adding, "I'll mostly be going over new weed control technologies."

Williams said his discussion also will include some of the broadleaf weeds that are problems in rice.

Boris Castro, an entomologist with the LSU AgCenter, will discuss the rice water weevil, rice stinkbugs and sugarcane borer in rice. Don Groth, a rice researcher with the LSU AgCenter, will talk about sheath blight and blast.

"I will cover disease resistance, cultural management and fungicide control," Groth said.

Other speakers include Johnny Saichuk, a rice specialist with the LSU AgCenter, who will talk about rice trends and development, and Jerry Ford of BASF, who will give an update on Clearfield Rice Variety certifications. Ford said these updates are needed because of the introduction of new varieties.

"I will review application timing, rates, tank mixes and proper stewardship to prevent resistance or cross contamination," Ford said. "There is a new variety available this year, called CL161.

"This variety has increased tolerance to Newpath Herbicide, which will allow for more flexibility in the timing of applications of Newpath," Ford said. "The changes to our product label in response to this new variety will be discussed as well."

For information on the Northeast Louisiana Rice Forum, contact Keith Collins at (318) 728-3216 or e-mail: kcollins@agcenter.lsu.edu.