Is It Too Late to Plant?

One of the frequent calls we get at the tail end of each planting season is from the grower scrambling to get his seed in the ground and asking if there's a way he can still plant with good success. The cut off date for planting any crop is never etched in stone, but is more of an educated guess based on a collection of information. Planting date, like age, is not just a number but a state of mind. Every planting season, calendar date is just one guideline among many, and it’s important to have an overall sense of appropriate timing in the midst of all these variables. Here are some of the scenarios we think about for the three growing windows and how you can use them. Precipitation, soil moisture, soil temperature, and long term forecast are the main players to consider. These are the factors that influence the germination and early growth of your crop as well as that of weeds. They determine the availability of soil nutrients. Then, timeline – what is your end goal with the crop and how long does it take to achieve that? This determines your planting deadline. For example, if you are planting forage sorghum to be cut at boot stage and planning to follow it with a small grain, the sorghum generally needs to be in the ground by mid-July to allow for a mid-September harvest and timely small grain planting. Since every year is different and none

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One thought on “Is It Too Late to Plant?

  1. I want a FaceBook style “Like” button for this one. Thanks! We finally made a (tentative) summer annual plan at lunch today. Better get out there with the discs. The annual ryegrass is still going so strong though…

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