Host an Event Volunteer Join Tickets

Support the plant database you love!

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Wednesday - November 17, 2010

From: Lafayette, LA
Region: Southeast
Topic: General Botany
Title: Can I grow wild rice in green house conditions?
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

Can I grow Zizania aquatica (wild rice) in green house conditions?

ANSWER:

Maybe, but Mr. Smarty Plants is wondering why you want to. Are you doing this to complement your greenhouse tomatoes?

For proper growth, plants need an energy source (light), a carbon source (carbon dioxide), mineral nutrients (usually from the soil), water, and an appropriate temperature. All of these conditions can be met in a green house. However, to sucessfully grow Zizania aquatica (Annual wildrice), you are going to need to approximate its natural growing conditions.

I have excerpted a portion of an article from the USDA concerning growing conditions. Click on the link to see the full article.

GROWING CONDITIONS
Physical and chemical conditions that appear best for the growth of wild rice in Michigan are:
1. Shallow clear water, 1 to 3 feet deep. 
2. Organic soil 6 inches or more in depth and preferably
with some calcareous material such as snail shells, etc.
3. A slight movement of water through the area during the
growing season. Best location is near the mouth of a
stream.
4. Fluctuations of water level less than 6 inches throughout
the growing season when the wild rice is in the floating-
leaf stage. 
5. An absence of carp Cyprinus carpio
6. Waters having a PH of 6.8 to 8.8; a sulfate ion
concentration of under 10 ppm and a total alkalinity of
40-200ppm.

I'm including several links with information about characteristics and growing of wild rice in the US, and its use in wetlands restoration.

University of Minnesota

Michigan Natural Features Inventory

Global Wetlands

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

More General Botany Questions

Do Banana Plants Grow in Galveston, Texas?
March 30, 2011 - Do banana plants grow on Galveston island?
view the full question and answer

How does Styrax youngiae differ from other Texas Styrax species?
August 18, 2013 - How does the Styrax youngae differ from other Texas styrax? Where can I find a description of all the Texas styrax trees?
view the full question and answer

Question about booklet, Native and Adapted Landscape Plants
June 24, 2009 - In the booklet"Native and Adapted Landscape Plants for Central Texas", the light requirements for some plants are written in a way that I do not understand. Is Sun/Part Shade different from Part Sha...
view the full question and answer

Consequences of overwatering plants
February 05, 2010 - Explain how an error on the high side when watering would affect soil fertility management, IPM efforts?
view the full question and answer

Forum for reporting rare plants
July 05, 2014 - Hi Mr. Smarty Pants, I was wondering if there is a forum for Texans to submit sightings of native plants they find? I live in Medina County and 2 years ago had a rare native plant growing in my yard ...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.