Plan the perfect garden with our interactive tool →

What are the Planting Dates for Summer Oats?

Maxim Shebeko/iStockphoto/Getty Images

Oats can be planted for forage, as a green crop or for harvest. The optimum time for planting summer oats will vary a bit by zone. Oats are not winter-hardy and should only be planted in fall for a winter-kill crop as green manure. Spring planting yields oats for harvest or forage. Oats are also useful for erosion control in hot, dry wind driven plains and for weed suppression. As a nurse crop they go well with legumes such as vetch. Oats can be harvested 50 to 60 days after sowing and the remaining stubble provides important and nutritious forage for animals.

Northern Oat Planting Times

Oats are not a common crop in the northern states, but a few areas sow small acreages. Alaska sows May 5 and doesn't harvest until Sept. 1. Most northern states sow in early to mid-March and are harvesting by mid-July until late August. Oregon sows in September and the crop overwinters to be harvested in July.

Central Oat Planting Times

Summer oat crops are sown in the springtime. Kansas sows in February for an early July to mid-August harvest. Nebraska sows in March, harvesting in early July, while Iowa is much the same. The north-central states are where the most oat-cropping takes place. South Dakota and North Dakota each produced the majority of the U.S. oat crop and sow in April for July and August harvest.

  • Oats are not a common crop in the northern states, but a few areas sow small acreages.
  • Nebraska sows in March, harvesting in early July, while Iowa is much the same.

Southern Oat Planting Times

Planting times also depend upon the crop purpose. If it will be used for grain and forage it is planted earliest. In Alabama that means early September, but it is planted later in September or even October if it is just for harvest. Southern states primarily plant a variety of oats that can overwinter since the weather is not so severe. Summertime crops are reserved for those that need the high heat and are economically more valuable. Fall planting and winter harvest is reserved primarily for the Cotton Belt in the southern United States.

Related Articles

The Best Crops to Grow in Northern Michigan
The Best Crops to Grow in Northern Michigan
What Are the Planting Times for Garden Vegetables in Virginia?
What Are the Planting Times for Garden Vegetables in...
What Planting Zone Is Cincinnati?
What Planting Zone Is Cincinnati?
Vegetable Growing in Tasmania
Vegetable Growing in Tasmania
Arkansas Vegetable Planting Guide
Arkansas Vegetable Planting Guide
Climate Conditions for Growing Wheat
Climate Conditions for Growing Wheat
Vegetable Planting Times in South Carolina
Vegetable Planting Times in South Carolina
How to Grow Turnip Greens
How to Grow Turnip Greens
How to Grow Vegetables in the Inland Empire
How to Grow Vegetables in the Inland Empire
When to Plant Fall Vegetables in Zone 7
When to Plant Fall Vegetables in Zone 7
The Best Vegetables to Grow in Michigan
The Best Vegetables to Grow in Michigan
Vegetables to Grow All Year in Southern California
Vegetables to Grow All Year in Southern California
The Best Soil Types for Growing Oats
The Best Soil Types for Growing Oats
When to Plant Red Potatoes in Mississippi
When to Plant Red Potatoes in Mississippi
How Much Alfalfa Seed Do I Plant Per Acre?
How Much Alfalfa Seed Do I Plant Per Acre?
How Long Is the Oat Growing Season?
How Long Is the Oat Growing Season?
The Best Time to Grow Grass in New Jersey
The Best Time to Grow Grass in New Jersey
The Best Vegetables to Grow in Virginia
The Best Vegetables to Grow in Virginia
Garden Guides
×