According to the reliable sources, it has been reported that the Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice) has identified six rice varieties which can withstand up to two weeks of submergence under water during the rainy season and for planting by Filipino farmers amid the threats of La Niña. As per the statement issued by Dr. Norvie Manigbas, Head of the PhilRice’s plant breeding and biotechnology division, named the submergence-tolerant varieties as PSB Rc14, Rc68, NSIC Rc9, Rc222, PSB Rc18, NSIC Rc194. Further, in this regard, Dr Manigbas narrated that PSB Rc14, Rc68, NSIC Rc9 and Rc222 stand 100 centimeters at most and have strong stems that can endure strong winds of between 40 to 60 kilometers per hour.
As reported by the PhilRice official that the rain-fed areas are prone to flooding and the varieties suited for these are PSB Rc18 (Ala), which can withstand 5-7 days of complete submergence; NSIC Rc194 (Submarino 1), which can survive, grow and develop even after 10-14 days of complete submergence. While, PSB Rc68 (Sacobia) are submergence-tolerant and a drought-resistant varieties. It has also been revealed that variety Rc222 yields up to 10 tons per hectare, while Rc18 yields a maximum of 8.1 tons per hectare. However, Rc194 yields 3.5 t/ha., Rc14 6.1 t/ha., and Rc68 4.4 t/ha. Further, in this regard, it has been explained that what is phenomenal is that when submerged during the vegetative stage, these varieties can recover, with farmers getting maximum harvests even under stressful conditions.
Meanwhile, the farmers have been advised to reduce fertilizer application and indicating that while fertilizers are beneficial to plants, however, they may cause lodging when used in high amounts. Moreover, fertilizers cannot be maximized, as there is a limited amount of sunlight during the rainy season. Thus, it is better to reduce fertilizer application rates by 20-30 percent in wet season.
Furthermore, the PhilRice also suggested a proper drainage should be there to avoid flooding and to use machines during land preparation, harvesting, threshing, and drying to save time and labor. Moreover, the importance of finishing field operations in the shortest possible time to prevent yield loss has also been emphasized. In addition, it has been recommended that drying of palay in flatbed dryers and on nylon nets or canvas for easier turnover when the rain comes. Further, harvesting and threshing of the crop should be within a short period of time and dry the seeds to desired moisture content which is usually 14 percent.