Spring is coming (thank goodness!), and the winter wheat crop is starting to green-up. Similar to what we’ve seen in the past few years, wheat planted shortly after the fly-free date looks better than the wheat that was planted late.
Our current recommendations. Fields should not be evaluated until completely green from warmer temperatures for at least 10 to 14 days. Stand evaluations will be more accurate when made during weather periods that promote growth. Yield potential is reduced if tiller numbers fall below 25 per square foot after green up. Pick about 10 to 15 spots in the field and count the number of plants per foot of row. A stand with an average of about 12 plants per foot of row may still result in a good population of head-bearing tillers per acre. For those fields with tillers, 15 tillers per square foot is considered minimum for an economic crop. The number of tillers per square foot is equal to the number of tillers in 19.2 inches of 7.5-inch wide rows. Our studies have shown that under adequate weather conditions, tillering may compensate for relatively poor initial stand establishment.
Coming Soon… With funding from the Ohio Small Grains Marketing Program (wheat check-off), we established a trial at three Ohio locations (Wood, Crawford, and Pickaway County) to determine the minimum wheat stand that will be profitable. We won’t have yield data until July; however, this data will help us evaluate and revise (if necessary) our current recommendations.