Though a few of Oklahoma acquired rain showers as October started, many wheat growers within the state are going through drought circumstances as they plant their fall crop.
There’s all the time threat concerned when planting wheat in dry circumstances, each generally and for particular varieties of operations, stated Amanda de Oliveira Silva, Oklahoma State University Extension small grains specialist.
“For example, dual-purpose wheat producers should determine the amount of forage their operations will need when charting out their livestock feed supplies, in addition to concerns every wheat grower may have about planting and crop performance,” she stated.
OSU Extension suggestions are that seed depth be between 1 to 1½ inch when planting wheat. Oklahoma doesn’t sometimes expertise the winter kill points seen in additional northerly states.
Producers who select to “dust in” wheat at an optimum planting date are primarily betting that October will deliver adequate rainfall to their space. The excellent news is the seed ought to stay viable within the soil offered it hasn’t germinated. Be cautious with in-furrow nitrogen or potassium fertilizers as they’ll injury the seed and make it tougher for the seed to soak up moisture wanted for germination.
Mud flies as a tractor prepares a dry discipline for wheat to be seeded. (Photograph by Todd Johnson, OSU Agricultural Communications Providers)
“The biggest risk for wheat planted into dry soils would be if a light rain occurs and the seed gets just enough moisture to germinate but not enough for the seedlings to emerge through the soil or to survive very long if dry conditions return,” Silva stated. “Also, if a heavy rain occurs in a short period of time, it could peak the seed and cause issues with emergence.”
Silva just lately offered extra insights about “dusting in” wheat on the agricultural tv present SUNUP.
Wheat that emerges in October should attain its yield potential however fall forage yield could also be decreased.
For grain-only enterprises, the optimum time for planting wheat for many areas of Oklahoma is mid-October. Planting winter wheat in November leaves much less time for the crop to develop tillers and roots, which may have an effect on yield potential.
“In this case, producers need to adapt their seeding rate to offset the shorter period between planting and the arrival of harsher weather conditions,” Silva stated.
Grain-only wheat growers in all probability might want to enhance seeding charges if planting is delayed to November and December, in line with OSU Extension suggestions. Think about using a fungicide seed remedy to assist with institution by stopping ailments attributable to fungi. A starter fertilizer could also be helpful as nicely.
“Be sure to test the soil to assess the potential need of fertilizers and most effectively manage input costs,” Silva stated. “Soil testing removes much of the guesswork and is, therefore, a good risk management tool.”
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