Spring Oat: Establishment
Spring oat is very sensitive to planting date and should be seeded early. As such, it is well adapted to no-till planting to avoid planting date delays. The target date for Area 1 (Figure 1.7-1) is April 10–25; Area 2, April 1–15; and Area 3, March 15–30. Planting dates later than the above generally result in reduced yields. Plant seed 1 to 1.5 inches deep. Maintain a uniform seeding depth. The desired plant population for spring oat is 1.2 to 1.5 million per acre (28–34 plants/ sq ft). This requires a seeding rate of approximately 96 pounds per acre.
The seeding rate should be based on the number of seeds per acre rather than pounds per acre. Refer to Table 1.7-3 when estimating the appropriate seeding rate for various drill row spacings. Seeding rates shown in Table 1.7-3 are adequate if you are seeding under ideal conditions, but these rates should be increased for seeding under poor conditions such as a cloddy seedbed or a delayed planting date. Use only high-quality seed. Good stands are essential for high oat yields.