Early Spring Is Time to Plant Oats

Early Spring Is Time to Plant Oats

Biggest use for oat crop in central Kansas is hay.

Oats are an early spring planted crop, and every year there are questions about planting them.

There are several reasons why people may plant oats. One is that oats make excellent hay and that is probably the number one use for them in central Kansas.

Some people like to plant oats as a cover crop for alfalfa or to mix in with an alfalfa planting or to plow down as an organic green manure crop.

In the corn belt, it is common to plant oats for feed grain or for even milling quality to go into human food. Our hot, windy days in early summer usually make low test weights and that´s not what the millers want.

Although the standard is considered 32 pounds per bushel, grain buyers

want at least pounds and will pay premiums sometimes for 40 pounds per bushel test weight oats.

For forage, some of the better yields have come from Gem, Jerry, Don, Jay, Reeves and INO9201. In areas such as south central Kansas, where not a lot of oats are grown, you are probably at the mercy of whatever you can get your hands on.

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