How to Plant Grain Sorghum


Grain sorghum is warm season annual grain crop that is resistant to salt, drought and heat. This crop is mainly used for feeding livestock in the United States, but is grown widely in other countries for human consumption, according to Purdue University. The seeds of grain sorghum will germinate in soil that is 50 degrees Fahrenheit, but growth comes at a slow rate. For better germination, the soil should be 60 F at the planting depth. A large-yielding crop, grain sorghum is grown on acres and not in small locations. Spring planting will yield the best results from grain sorghum.

Step 1

Apply a preplanting herbicide to the planting area. Spray the herbicide according to the label directions.

Step 2

Prepare the soil for planting. Till the entire area with a tractor and tilling attachment. Plan section rows 40 inches apart.

Step 3

Spread seeds at a rate of 10 pounds of seed per acre of land, according to the University of Arizona. Plant seeds 1 to 2 inches deep with a row seeding attachment for your tractor. Bore seeds deeper in lighter soils to prevent washoff.

Step 4

Fertilize the seedlings at a rate of 6000 pounds per acre. The best fertilizer will have a nitrogen base of 150 pounds per acre.

Step 5

Provide water to the acreage through an irrigation method of your choice. Grain sorghum requires 25 inches of water each season for optimal growth.

Things You'll Need

  • Herbicide
  • Tractor
  • Tilling attachment
  • Row seeder
  • Fertilizer
  • Water


  • Purdue University: Grain Sorghum (Milo)
  • Purdue University: Grain sorghum
  • John Deere: DB Planter Series
  • University of Arizona: Growing Grain Sorghum in Arizona
Keywords: grow grain, grain sorghum, plant grain

About this Author

Christina Wheeler has been a professional freelance writer since 2007. She lends her expertise in animal care, gardening and home improvement to online publications such as Garden Guides and eHow. Wheeler studied business management at Ohio University.