How to Grow Oats [Practical Guide] -
Guide on How to Grow Oat

How to Grow Oats [Practical Guide]

If you are a lover of oat, this informative piece where you will learn everything you need to know about growing your oats is for you.

Oats are widely eaten and they are rich in nutrients and very healthy as well. If you are a lover of oat, you can take a step further to grow oats yourself either in your garden or on large farmland.

Interestingly, growing oats is quite simple. All you need is to choose a planting site, choose a variety of seeds, plant site preparation, seed planting, watering, fertilizing, weeding control, and harvest.

If you are interested in growing your oats, make sure you read this informative piece on how to grow oats to the end.

How to Grow Oats Step-By-Step Guide

Below are helpful tips you need regarding how to grow oats. Ensure you follow the steps outlined and discussed below.

Step 1: Choosing a Planting Site

Choose an ideal location either in your backyard or acquire large farmland for mass production. Either way, the planting site should have well-drained loose soil. The location should have access to full sunlight.

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Importantly, the planting site should have a soil pH of 6 to 7. That is because oats thrive in soil with a pH in this range.

Step 2: Choosing Variety Seeds

There are varieties of oat seeds that you can choose from. The quality of the seed you choose will determine the yield level during harvest. You should purchase the seed from a reliable source.

Some of the commonly planted varieties include forage oats, black oats, hull-less oat, and common oats. You can choose to plant any as your preferred choice or all of them.

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Step 3: Planting Site Preparation

Once you’ve identified and gotten a planting site with these ideal properties, you should prepare the land by removing weeds and other unwanted plants.

Clear the plants from the field and then you should till the land with a tiller or cultivator to break up the soil to loosen it to a depth of 6-inches to make it suitable for planting.

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Step 4: Seed Planting

It is best to plant your oat seeds directly rather than transplant them. More so, ensure you start planting when the weather is cool.

you should broadcast the seed on the planting site. Ensure you scatter the seeds lightly so that you will have 2 seeds per square inch. Continue to broadcast the seed until the planting area is filled with oat seedlings.

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Smooth out the soil with a rake to allow them to be planted less than 1 inch (2.5 cm) below the surface, and water lightly.

Step 5: Watering and Fertilizing

Oats need moist soil to survive so you need to keep the soil continuously moist so that the soil doesn’t feel dry. That is why you have to feel the soil for dryness, if it feels dry, water the oats continuously so that they can thrive.

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It is best to add fertilizer during the land preparation stage. However, further use of fertilizer is optional. You can add a fertilizer that contains ammonium sulfate, ammonium nitrate, or urea to the soil during the early germination stage.

Step 6: Weed Control

Perennial weeds usually pose threat to young oat plants. As such make sure your planting site is well tilled and to minimize weed growth. You can remove the weed by hand.

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Step 7: Harvest

The growth period is usually within 6 months. You can start harvesting your oat seeds once the seed heads are dry. You should gently touch a few of the grain heads to feel if they’re damp or dry. Once, they’re dry to the touch, it’s time to harvest the oats.

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Varieties of oats

There are several varieties of oats that can be grown in [Country of Reference]. Some of the most common ones include:

  1. Marvellous oats: This is a spring oat variety that has a high yield potential and good resistance to lodging.
  2. Finesse oats: This is a winter oat variety that is known for its early maturity and high grain quality.
  3. Canyon oats: This is a spring oat variety that is well-suited for areas with a short growing season.

Best Agronomic Practices To Engage In Growing Oats

To achieve a good yield of oats, it is essential to follow the best agronomic practices. Some of these practices include:

  1. Soil preparation: Oats grow best in well-drained soils that are rich in organic matter. Before planting, it is important to prepare the soil by tilling and adding organic matter, such as compost or manure.
  2. Planting: Oats should be planted in the early spring or fall, depending on the variety. The recommended planting depth is around 2-3 cm.
  3. Fertilization: Oats require nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium for optimal growth. The amount of fertilizer needed depends on the soil fertility level, the oat variety, and the expected yield.
  4. Irrigation: Oats require adequate moisture for optimal growth. If rainfall is insufficient, irrigation should be provided.
  5. Weed control: Weeds can reduce oat yield and quality. Effective weed control methods include crop rotation, mulching, and herbicide application.

Common Diseases And Pests Of Oats

Oats are susceptible to several diseases and pests. Some of the common ones include:

  1. Crown rust: This is a fungal disease that causes orange pustules on leaves and stems. Treatment options include fungicide application and resistant oat varieties.
  2. Smut: This is a fungal disease that affects the grain. Infected grains turn black and powdery. Treatment options include seed treatment with fungicides.
  3. Aphids: These are small insects that feed on oat leaves and can transmit viruses. Treatment options include insecticide application and biological control.

Different Propagation Methods Of Oats

Oats can be propagated through two methods:

  1. Seed propagation: This is the most common propagation method. Oat seeds are sown directly into the soil.
  2. Clonal propagation: This method involves the use of plant parts, such as stems or leaves, to propagate oats. However, this method is not widely used for oats.

How Long Do Oats Take To Grow?

It takes 6 months for oats to grow into maturity and be ready for harvest.

Are Oats Difficult To Grow?

Oat farming is not rocket science and they are one of the simplest cereals to grow. Oat can be grown indoors, in the garden, or on large farmland.

Can You Grow Oats In A Container?

You can grow oats in a container. You can start with a small container that is 6 to 8 inches deep to grow a few oat stalks.

How Much Oats Do You Get From One Plant?

Most times, you will get less than 1 pound of oats from one plant.

Do Oats Come Back Every Year?

Oats are an annual crop that will return every year if you leave them on the ground.

What Month Do You Plant Oats?

The best month to plant oat is between February and March.

Will Oats Regrow After Cutting?

Oats can regrow after cutting but not all of them and most time it’s rear.

Where Do Oats Grow Best?

Oats grow best in cool moist climates and well-drained soil.

What Is the Easiest Grain to Grow?

Maize is the easiest grain to grow compared to wheat and other cereal.

How Many Times Can You Harvest Oats?

Oats can be harvested multiple times depending on the climate and the varieties planted.

Can You Plant Oats From Oatmeal?

Oats from oatmeal cannot be planted because they have been boiled and processed.

Can You Eat Raw Oats?

You can eat raw oats as they are healthier and contain high nutrients than boiled or processed oats.

Is There A Difference Between Feed Oats And Seed Oats?


When Should You Cut Oats For Hay?

Timing is key when cutting oats for hay. The best time to cut oats for hay is during its watery ripe stage. Cutting your oats for hay at an early stage gives you the best quality hay desired.

How Late Can You Seed Oats?

You can seed oats late from July to August.

Why Do Farmers Plant Oats?

Farmers plant oats for reasons other than their nutritious seeds. The main benefit is that it provides quick, weed-suppressing biomass, absorbs excess soil nutrients, and can enhance legume performance when planted in mixtures.

What Is The Best Fertilizer For Oats?

Oats need fertilizer that has balanced nitrogen and phosphorus nutrient.

What Type Of Soil Does Oats Grow In?

Oats perform well in well-drained loose soil. It can also grow well in sandy loam to heavy clay soils as long as they have good drainage.

How Late Can You Plant Oats?

The latest planting period for oat is to plant in August.

Where Do Oats Grow Best?

Oats grow best in land areas with quality soil that is well-drained and loose. Also, it can thrive in heavy clay soils as much as they have good drainage.

How Do Oats Grow In South Africa?

In South Africa, oat is planted as a winter rainfall plant. It is mostly planted in the western cape region. While in other provinces, the plant is produced under irrigation.

To grow oats in South Africa, you have to select a planting area that receives sunlight and has well-drained soil. The plant should be broadcasted on a well-prepared field and watered regularly.

How To Grow Oats Indoors

Step 1: Get a planting container.

Step 2: Fill the container with a potting mix

Step 3: Moisten the soil and plant 1-inch deep oat seedlings. Gently press the seed into the soil and cover it loosely with damp potting soil.

Step 4: Place the container in a sunny location where it will receive full sunlight daily.

Step 5: Water frequently, especially if the soil appears to be dry.

Step 6: Weeding

Step 7: Harvest

How To Grow Oats For Horses

Growing oats for horses is not different from growing oats for personal consumption or commercial purpose. The only difference is that the oat is gathered as hay for horses which is good and nutritious for their health.

  1. To grow oats for horses, you need to
  2. Get a farmland or planting site
  3. Prepare the farm
  4. Plant the seedlings by scattering the seeds
  5. Water frequently
  6. Remove unwanted plants
  7. Add fertilizer if necessary
  8. Harvest the oats as hay for horses

How To Harvest Oats

About 6 months after planting your oat seeds, the plant grows to maturity with signs of the stalk turning brown and seed heads becoming plump. All you need do is snap the grain head with your hand.

Alternatively, you can cut the grain head using scissors or any other simple cutting tool.

Growing Oats In Containers

  1. Get a pot that is 8-inch deep. You can go for a larger container to get more yield.
  2. Fill the container with potting soil or compost
  3. Water the soil lightly and plant oat seedlings just 1 inch deep. Press the seed gently into the soil and cover it loosely with a damp potting mix.
  4. Place the container in a sunny area to receive sunlight if about 6 hours daily.
  5. Water frequently especially when the soil feels dry.
  6. Weeding

How Long for Oats To Grow

It takes 6 months for oats to grow into maturity.

Can You Plant Rolled Oats

You cannot plant rolled oats because they have been steamed and processed which is not ideal for planting.

How To Harvest Oats By Hand

You can harvest oats using your hands by simply snapping off the seed heads from the rest of the plant with your hands and placed in the bucket.


Oats are highly nutritious, and growing them can be easy or hard depending on your location. However, you must know how to grow oats so that you will be guided through the process with ease and that is why we have compiled this helpful material on how to grow oats for you.


Author: David

David is a Kenyan farmer from the rural village of Nairobi. Growing up, he was surrounded by the beauty of the Kenyan countryside, which sparked his passion for farming. After completing his education, he decided to pursue a career in agriculture and has since dedicated his life to providing food for his local community. David is an experienced farmer and is experienced in a range of agricultural practices, including crop rotation, animal husbandry and soil management. He is passionate about promoting sustainable agriculture and is actively working to reduce food insecurity in his community.

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