You are here

How Late Can I Plant My Wheat?

The rains have slowed wheat planting in a lot of areas, but we still have the potential for a good crop!

Planting within the first 10 days after the recommended fly-free is normally our goal, but we can plant wheat up to one month after the fly-free date and still maintain optimal yields. So, for most of Ohio this means wheat can be safely planted through the last week of October. Here are your fly-free dates: 




We need to now start increasing our seeding rates. For no-till into bean stubble we need to be at 1.65 to 1.75 million seeds per acre and no-till into corn stalks we need to be at 1.9 to 2 million seeds per acre. (Use the higher rates as we go later plant date). When stubble or stalks are thick and wet there is also a benefit to slowing down your planting speed. This allows the drills to do a better job cutting through the stubble and placing the seeds at the proper depth.




Pounds of Seed Needed to Plant from 1.2 Million to 2.0 Million Seeds Per Acre with Different Size Wheat Seed

Planting depth is critical for tiller development and winter survival. Plant seed between 1 and 1.5 inches deep and make sure planting depth is uniform across the field. No-till wheat into soybean stubble is ideal, but make sure the soybean residue is uniformly spread over the surface of the ground. Shallow planting is the main cause of low tiller numbers and poor over-winter survival due to heaving and freezing injury.

Planting depth is even more important in late planted wheat. 

Late planting results in plants that are smaller than normal when entering dormancy. With smaller and more shallow root systems than normal, late planting makes them more susceptible to heaving next March.

We will also want to increase our fall nitrogen to 20 to 40 units to increase root growth to help with heaving and winter kill. On late planted wheat early scouting in the spring will help us determine stands, and at that point we will set our nitrogen program to increase tillering if needed.

For more Agronomic News from Alex Johnson, Certified Crop Advisor, please visit his Agronomy Page on

Read more about

Crop Talk

Most Recent Poll

I want __________ for Christmas