Planting Rice in [11 Steps and with Pictures]: The Guide You Need

Did you know that s and no record of the existence of a 8,000 varieties of rice , but the exact amount is still unknown?

Or … what does the rice represent?  20% of food consumption worldwide? ?

In addition, rice is present in most of the world’s cuisines. Especially Chinese and Japanese ( sushi! )

Sow Rice Step by Step:
  • When? In autumn and spring .
  • Where? Climates in principle tropical. Rice grows with a lot of light and with an ideal temperature of 23º.
  • Harvest time? The cycle can last a whole year and is approximately every 3 months.
  • How do we prepare the land? It adapts to a wide variety of soils. The optimal pH for rice is 6.6
  • How do we water? At first it is recommended to maintain a flood in the ground of at least 5 cm.
  • How do we sow? Here step by step.
  • How do we harvest?  About 2 weeks after the soil has been drained, the rice will turn a golden color. That is the right time for harvest.
  • Favorable associations? Legumes ( beans , lima beans , lentils , chickpeas or peas ).
  • Plagues and diseases? Rice borer , Pericularia oryzae and pudenta .


E l cultivation of rice began nearly 10,000 years ago , in many humid regions of Asia Tropical and subtropical .

It is believed that it was in India where it was cultivated for the first time, although it was in China that the cultivation developed most strongly .

It is currently the most widely used cereal for human consumption and represents the basis of the gastronomy of China, Japan, Vietnam, Thailand and Korea.

Hence, 90% of the cultivated hectares worldwide are in Asia.

It is a cereal that is easy to grow. In the following article we tell you the most efficient way to plant rice. 


When to plant rice? The dates

We want to plant rice in  fall and spring. 

Where to plant rice? Temperature and brightness

It is a tropical crop , but rice can also be grown in temperate climates .

Rice grows best in bright light and in warm temperatures. If the climate where you live does not guarantee long periods of heat , it is recommended to plant the rice indoors.

Therefore, choose a place where it receives a lot of sunlight.

 The optimum temperature for its development is 23 ºC . With higher temperatures, plants grow faster, but tissues are more susceptible to disease.

To germinate, the ideal temperature varies between 30 and 35 ºC . Above 40ºC, germination does not occur.

The optimum for flowering is 30ºC . Above 50ºC it does not occur .


How do we water? Humidity

Regarding irrigation, you have to take care that the water level is adequate .

During the first days, the humidity level must be very high to protect the first shoots from the cold .

It is recommended to maintain a flood on the ground of at least 5 cm .

With the first shoots, the amount of water is usually raised up to 15 cm , although some experts argue that this increase is not highly recommended.

As plants grow, watering levels should be lowered to allow leaves to breathe .

The leaves should rise above the water level . In this phase, the water can be renewed to achieve the best oxygenation and temperature.

Once the crop is implanted, you can use the dry one , which consists of cutting off the water inlet and letting the soil dry out to a greater or lesser degree.

This is done when the tillering phase ends until the beginning of the ear formation , approximately the   end of June and July.

How do we prepare the land for rice cultivation? The substrate and nutrients

The crop adapts to a wide variety of soils , from very sandy to clayey. 

However, it is usually cultivated in fine and medium textured soils , typical of the wide flooded plains and   river deltas.

The soil should be slightly acidic and clayey for best results.

Fine-textured soils make work difficult, but they are more fertile as they have a higher content of clay, organic matter and nutrients.

In the event that the soil lacks iron , you can add iron sulfate .

 The optimal pH for rice is 6.6 

You should be aware that most soils change their pH towards neutrality within a few weeks after flooding.

How to sow rice step by step

1) Clean the ground

It removes weeds and remains of previous crops and all kinds of residues.

Rice seeds need all the nutrients and space they can get.

2) level the ground

If you are using buckets, fill them with at least 15 cm of moist soil.

3) Flood the area where you are going to plant

Keep in mind that it is much easier to flood small spaces than large spaces, so it is recommended to use seedbeds even when sowing outdoors , since in this way, it is easier to manage and maintain the crop.


4) Introduce the seeds

Introduce the rice seeds when the water is clear and the mud has settled on the bottom. The sowing should be done with the flooded land about 5 cm high.

Add mulch to the soil, lightly covering the rice grains.

The mulch retains moisture, which is particularly beneficial in very dry climates.

5) Make sure the soil remains moist

If you prefer, you can keep the water level at 5 cm.

6) scatter the plants

Once the plants have sprouted, select the healthiest and strongest seedlings.  When they grow to 18 cm, spread them no more than 30 cm apart.

If you’ve planted in seedbeds, transplant them when they reach 12 to 18 cm in height.

They must be planted on a muddy bed.

7) Eliminate weeds

Flooded soils favor the abundance of weeds in the rice field. Remove them being careful not to damage your rice plants.

Microscopic and macroscopic algae are common in rice cultivation. The damage produced by these algae depends on the species and the stage of cultivation.

Generally speaking, algae compete for light and oxygen, causing chlorosis and wilting of seedlings.

The development of algae is faster the higher the temperature of the water and air.

In case of warning the presence of algae, a chemical treatment is recommended for its control.

9) Wait for the rice to ripen

This will take approximately 3-4 months . When the plants are 17 centimeters tall, cut off the flow of water and drain the excess.

Over the course of two weeks, the rice grains will turn from green to golden. This is when you will know they are ready.

Harvesting and gathering

The optimal harvest time is when the spike reaches its physiological maturity. 

So it is important to let the rice grains ripen.

About 2 weeks after the soil has been drained , the rice will turn a golden color. That is the right time for harvest .

Cut the stalks just below the heads , which is where the rice grains are. You will notice tiny pockets at the top of the stem, those are the rice husks.

After threshing, rice can have a humidity of 25 to 30%, so it must be dried to a humidity level of less than 14%.

To do this, wrap the husks in newspaper and store them in a dry, sunny place for 2-3 weeks.


Favorable rice associations

They associate well with legumes (beans, lima beans, lentils, chickpeas or peas).

 Legumes produce amino acids that rice absorbs directly. 

Common pests and diseases

Rice borer

It is a lepidopteran native to Asian countries . They cause slight rotting and penetrate the stems until they affect the granazón .

For its prevention it is recommended to flood the plots during the winter .

For its control , a release of natural parasites of the Trichogramma and Apanteles genera can be made .

Another method of control is the use of pheromone traps.


It is an insect of the order Hemiptera , better known as the stink bug.

It chops the grain producing some spots that are known by   the name of «bird’s eye».

To combat them , potassium or biodegradable soap can be applied to the underside of the plants.

In addition, the destruction of the vegetation after harvesting and in the margins around the rice field is recommended.

Another method of control is the use of traps.


Pericularia oryzae

It is caused by a microscopic fungus that produces a substance toxicant known as pericularina , which inhibits growth of tissue and disorganized .

For its control , Bordeaux mixture is used , at a rate of 1,200 l / ha, but the treatment must be repeated to be effective, so it can be very expensive.

To prevent it, varieties that are not very sensitive to the attack of the fungus can be used.

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