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Harvesting rice in VA

 
Marianne Cicala
gardener
Posts: 666
Location: south central VA 7B
77
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We didn't know of anyone growing rice - an important staple for the farm, so we went for it.  Late last winter we started pots of seeds, Carolina and Blue Bonnet, both short grain with faster grow times than wild or long grain.  We dug a few paddies, each overflowing into one another and once the seedlings were big enough and the weather warm enough, we chopped the Sudan grass that was planted in the paddies (early spring) for animal feed and a heavy mulch layer for the rice.  We seeded 1 paddy with Quinoa which was a fast grower and total success.  We clearly didn't start enough rice for even 5 small paddies, so 2 were planed.  The results - easily 15 pounds of harvested grains! Yesterday, Sean finished process of crushing hull and winnowing, after the cut grains dried in the sun for a couple weeks.
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