Ariel G. Mactal and Justo G. Canare Jr.
Vulnerability of rice growing areas to strong typhoons coupled by the susceptibility of traditional rice varieties to lodging lead to low yield and poor quality of harvested rice. To address these problems, two experiments using factorial in Randomized Complete Block Design were conducted during the wet season to determine the effects of paclobutrazol and nitrogen on the lodging resistance, agro-morphological characteristics and yield performance of two traditional rice varieties Elon-elon and Palawan Red. Application of increasing concentration of paclobutrazol did not significantly affect the percentage filled spikelets per panicle, number of spikelets per panicle, weight of 1000 grains, dry matter yield, harvest index and grain yield. At all concentrations of paclobutrazol, Palawan red had the longest first and fourth internodes, more unfilled spikelets per panicle, heavier 1000 grains weight and higher leaf area index than Elonelon. On the other hand, smaller stem diameter, more productive tillers per hill and longer panicles were obtained from Elon-elon than Palawan red. Elon-elon applied with increasing rates of nitrogen in combination with 500 ppm paclobutrazol had bigger stem diameter, higher productive tillers per hill, higher number of filled spikelets per panicle, higher percentage filled spikelets per panicle, longer panicles, higher harvest index and higher grain yield than Palawan red. Apparently, Palawan red had longer first, second and third internodes, more unfilled spikelets per panicle, heavier 1000 grain weight and higher leaf area index than Elon-elon. Applications of 30 and 60 kg N per ha had significantly higher lodging index than the untreated plants. Harvest index and grain yield were lowest in plants applied with 30 and 60 kg N per ha, attributable to high lodging index. Paclobutrazol is effective in shortening the length of the lower internodes and inhibits stem elongation resulting to shorter plants with increased lodging resistance. This ultimately produced higher yield than those plants that lodged. Culm strength was reduced by high rates of nitrogen causing significant increase in lodging index. The time of lodging is crucial in predicting the yield performance of the plants. Early lodging resulted to huge reduction in yield while it has little or no effect on yield when it occurs at later stages of the rice crop.
Keywords: lodging index, Paclobutrazol, lodging incidence, stem elongation