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of planting, within four or five weeks during any season, is not especially important. Such a difference in time of sowing oats may make the difference between success and failure. The
table on page 303 shows the best dates as determined at the sta· tions indicated, as well as indicating the period of the tests.
411. Depth of Sowing.—The depth of sowing between one to four inches does not materially influence the yield, although the best results have been obtained with sowing from one to two inches, as shown in the following table:
No. years Depth, Station
2 Minnesota . . . . 40 I I 1-2-2 1-2 Ohio
. 101 4 1-2
The same principles apply here as with maize and wheat. (130, 300)
412. Methods of Sowing. Unless the land is plowed, oats must, of course, be sown broadcast. On plowed land the practice is divided, but broadcasting is probably the most general, the controlling reason being that they can be somewhat more: cheaply sown in this way tharı if the drill is used. The experi
mental evidence does not clearly Wheat roots, showing that the depth of the :
the indicate any increase in yield depth of seeding. In the plants on the left from either method, much apthe permanent roots will arise at the point where the culm enlarges. (About one. Paichuy uponuing upon soll,
one. parently depending upon soil, fourth natural size.)
season, preparation of seed bed, depth of seeding, and quantity of seed used. If drouth prevails
permanent roots is not influenced by the
åt or just after seeding, or soil is of a character to suffer from dry weather, drilling would be preferred. If drilling is accompanied by better preparation of seed bed, it is to be preferred. Broadcasting requires more seed, perhaps a half bushel to the acre more, much depending upon the preparation of the seed bed. The same seeding machinery described for sowing wheat may be used for oats. (135) The broadcast seeder attached to the end gate of a wagon is widely used where oats follow maize without B
without Broadcast seeder attached to the end gate
of farm wagon and driven by rear wheel. plowing. Kansas Station found Drawing on the right shows hopper with during seven years an average of grass seed attachment. twenty-six bushels by broadcasting and thirty bushels by drilling. Slightly better results have been obtained by using the shoe drill with press wheels than by the shoe drill without press wheel or by hoe drill.?
413. Method of Fall Sowing.–The Georgia Station recommends the following method to prevent winter killing :
“On the station farm we have found, even when the drills were laid two feet or one and a half feet apart, using a common scooter plow, or, better, a single-row fer
tilizer and seed distributer-that oats so sown always produce a larger yield than when sown broadcast and harrowed in. But a more important discovery is the fact that when the seed are sown in open furrows and barely covered, leaving the furrows open or unfilled, the oat plants are
very much less liable to be killed Grain and fertilizer drill recommended by Georgia Sta. h
·by a severe freeze. The idea was tion for fall seeding of oats. The covering attach: ments, a, are removed when sowing oats.
conceived several years ago, and
annually since we have sown the larger portion of the fall-sown area in drills eighteen to twenty-four inches apart, latterly using a Gantt fertilizer distributer. This sows but one row at a
1 Kan. Bul. 74, p. 200.
time, has no covering attachment, but simply opens a small furrow and sows the seed. The result is the plants come up one and a half to two inches below the general surface, and the crown of each plant is formed and established say two to two and a half inches below the general surface. The winter rains, light freezes and thaws gradually but only partly fill in the open furrow, and the more vital and sensitive parts of the plants are left at the original depth, below the reach of even very severe freezes.” 1
IV. WEEDS, FUNGOUS DISEASES AND INSECT ENEMIES.
414. WEEDS.—The oat, like all other spring sown cereals, is apt to be infested with any weeds whose seeds happen to be present in the soil. Weeds are frequently a hindrance to the proper curing of the crop. In the Northern States the most conspicuous weed in the oat crop is the wild mustard, which may be eradicated by spraying the oats with a three per cent solution of copper sulphate at the rate of fifty gallons of the solution per acre. (144)
415. FUNGOUS DISEASES.—The oat plant is generally exceptionally free from insect enemies and fungous diseases. Besides the two species
Loose smut on oats. Glumes more of rust occurring upon wheat (146) there occurs
fully destroyed in specimen on the also on oats crown rust (Puccinia coronata Cda.),
right. so called from the horn-like projections on the teleutospores. No remedy is known. There are two forms of smut, namely, loose smut (Ustilago avenae (Pers.) Jens.) and covered smut (Ustilago avenae laevis (Jens.) Kell. and Swing.). The first form, which is most common, converts the entire spikelet into smut spores, while in the second only the kernel is so affected. Both are successfully prevented by treating with hot water or formalin. (149) A bace
1 Ga. Bul. 44 (1889), p. II.
terial disease sometimes causes the death of the lower leaves and more or less yellowing of the young plants. 1 No remedy has been discovered.
416. INSECT ENEMIES.-There is no insect which confines its attacks to the oat plant, and aside from the chinch bug (151), grasshoppers and fall army worm, there is none that causes extensive and serious damage to the growing plant. (153) The stored grain is less seriously attacked, doubtless on account of its hull.
1 Journal of Mycology, Vol. VI, p 72.
417. Time and Method of Harvesting. The evidence appears to be that oats may be cut when one-half the leaves are still green and the grain in the early dough, without materially injuring the chemical composition or the yield of grain, and that the yield and quality of the straw may be increased provided the sheaves are immediately shocked and capped to permit slow curing and ripening.' (161) Cutting in the hard dough stage and slow curing in round shocks is generally desirable, but when weeds abound or for other reasons rapid curing is necessary, long shocks are better. Oats may be cut for hay while the grain is in the milk stage with mowing machine and treated as any other hay crop, or may be cut with self-binding harvester and put in round shocks of six bundles each, with one bundle for a cap. The methods of harvesting, threshing and storing of oats are similar to those of wheat. (162, 167, 168, 169) The Ohio Station found the shrinkage of grain between September and March of fifty-five varieties to be less than one per cent, and of a sample of baled oat straw during the same period about six per cent.? Michigan Station obtained similar results with the grain two years, and a loss of three per cent another
418. Uses.-Oats are the chief grain food for horses, and are equally acceptable to and desirable for cattle and sheep, but
1 Ill. Bul. 31; Kan. Buls. 13, 29, 54. 2 Ohio Bul. 57 (1894), p. 111. 8 Mich. Bul. 191 (1901), p. 169.