It is now October 2nd, and it is time for another update on the Triticale/Oat experiment.  If you have not read my previous posts about the 90 acres I am referring to, please read here.  To summarize, I planted Fall triticale last October following seed peas, I cut it off in early July and by the 20th of July, had oats replanted.   I applied 40 lbs of N and a little Phosphorous in early August.  The field is located in Tumalo, OR at 3600′.

I just got done swathing the oats.  They did pretty good considering how late they got planted. I intended to get them in the ground by around the 10th of July, but because of a rain system that moved in late June, I didn’t get the Triticale off fast enough.  I chisel plowed the ground with two directions and then pulled a drill and tire roller on my planting pass.  The chisel plowing saved me at least two days as it is very fast and I can keep my speed relatively good over the rocks.  The seed germinated real well in the residue that remained after the chisel plow.  Because of Nitrate concerns, I only applied 40 lbs of urea N, with a small amount of P.  I spread a corner with 40 lbs of Ammonium Sulfate as an experiment, and it looks like the urea with the P did a much better job which surprised me.  I guess the new urea treatments to reduce evaporation works well.

 

August was a warm month, as well as the two weeks of September, but by the 20th, we had a cold, wet snap hit that probably reduced my yield. The oats had 61 days in the ground, and was about 30% headed out at swathing. I will update this post with yield results but I predict it going between 2.25-2.75 ton/acre.  If I was able to get it planted when I wanted to. I think I would have gained .5ton/acre.

I am going to repeat this crop rotation on 150 acres this year, we will see how it turns out.  Here are a few keys I have learned.

  • Get the fall triticale in before October 1st in order to get it irrigated and established before irrigation season shuts down. This would have bought me more time in June to get it cut and the oats planted in a timely manner.
  • Apply 100lbs/acre of N for the triticale, and perhaps 50-60lbs of N on the oats depending on the planting date.  If I can get the oats planted around the 5th of July, I will give it 60 lbs in order to press more yield out, and It should mature enough to avoid Nitrate problems.
  • Harvest and replanting speed is key. Make sure you are able to get the Triticale crop off the field and the tillage tools back on as quick as possible.
  • Irrigating the oats in July is somewhat difficult.  Make sure to not get behind on your soil moisture.

Another option is to no-till the oats into the triticale stubble. I did this on 10 acres with a conventional drill and the oats sprouted good. I want to repeat a small acreage experiment on this in order to be convinced that a no-till drill isn’t needed. This wouldn’t be an issue if I owned a drill, but the custom rates to drill is cost prohibitive as I can work the ground for just a few $ more an acre.

Please email or comment your thoughts or questions!

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