I went for a field trip to Sekinchan on the 25th July for 3 days. The objective of this trip was to find out the role of Clearfield technology to overcome weedy rice problem. Based on my findings through interviewing the farmers in Sekinchan, I’ve understood how the farmers handle Weedy Rice in Sekinchan.
Weedy Rice (风稻), which is called 风水谷 or Padi Angin in the Chinese Community in Sekinchan, is a species of rice (Oryza) that produces far fewer grains per plant than cultivated rice and is therefore considered a pest. Based on the farmer’s perception, they believe that, it has been evolved from the paddy that they used to plant. During harvesting, the seed which dropped onto the ground grew, and these seeds undergo natural selection so that they could adapt to the environment, which leads to the occurrence of weedy rice. Some farmers also state that the occurrence of weedy rice is because it is been crossed bred with other plants, producing a new species of paddy.
The method which the farmers used to control the weedy rice is by using the transplanter machine. The transplanter machine was introduced to the community in year 2004 when the occurrence of weedy rice became very serious. The technology of using transplanter machines was introduced in Taiwan and brought to Sekinchan. Using the transplanter machine, it is easier to recognise which is weedy rice, thus it could be removed easily. Those farmers who do not use the transplanter machines could only depend on labour. These farmers said that the weedy rice could be recognised easily as long as it is during a certain period, as the weedy rice gets mature earlier and it will be extraordinarily tall compared to the paddy which they plant.
MARDI has collaborated with BASF to use its Clearfield Production System to control weedy rice and other paddy weeds, as well as substantially reduce the cost of weed management. BASF's...