Need help with seeding rate

Discussion in 'Food Plots for Wildlife' started by Hoosierhunting, May 16, 2019.

  1. Hoosierhunting

    Hoosierhunting Active Member

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    I'm planting some Egyptian wheat screens this year. I know I want a fairly heavy seeding rate so that the heads don't get big and it's better able to stand up to the snow. Can anyone who has planted EW in snow country tell me what rate has worked best for them for a durable stand into the winter. Appreciate any input.
     
  2. dogghr

    dogghr Well-Known Member

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    I’m not the best one for this answer as u will see in a minute. But to answer your question 25-50# /ac is typical. You want to go a little light to allow the stalks to be thick and strong. Heavy seeding gives the opposite. Also like corn it loves N and hates weeds. Some plant Milo w it to give some support. I think it requires 60+ deg soil temps for germination. Hit after 30 days w urea to promote growth.
    Now my discalaimer. I’ve planted it, got nice thick stalks 12 ft tall growth. With fall heavy wind, ice , and snows it was laying on the ground by hunting season. Sure looked like a purty screening... for a while. I would never plant again. Actually have a bag you can have in garage. Too much effort costs sweat expense in my opinion. Other options work better for screening for me. Lickcreek has good read on its planting. Good luck.


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  3. Tap

    Tap Well-Known Member

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    Green Cover Seed has some great info on lots of seed varieties.
    Here is the EW link to their site. There is a video there, too.
    https://www.greencoverseed.com/product/1057/

    GCS also has their SmartMix Calculator. It allows you to plug in your specific criteria (zip code, planting methods, goals, etc) and it tells you seeding rates and other important info. I love SmartMix, but beware...I's addictive. You can spend hours on it investigating seed varieties, and different goals you may have for your plot. Try it.....
    https://smartmix.greencoverseed.com
     
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  4. MarkDarvin

    MarkDarvin Well-Known Member

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    Weak plants fall down. Soil health drives standability. Make sure you've got enough potassium for starters. Sulfur helps with nitrogen utilization.
     
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  5. Hoosierhunting

    Hoosierhunting Active Member

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    Wish I’d known that before I bought it from Hancock! I’m going to give it a try and see what happens.


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  6. Hoosierhunting

    Hoosierhunting Active Member

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    Thanks Tap, between this and DoubleTree I think I’ll drill it at about 6lbs and acre. Jeff Sturgis recommended 10-15lbs/acre. His part of the country would match mine in terms of snowfall, but he was giving those rates for broadcasting. This is why I asked, there’s a lot of difference of opinion on rates it seems. I’m going to give it a go and figure if it doesn’t hold up well that’s just another error in my long list of trial and error.


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  7. Hoosierhunting

    Hoosierhunting Active Member

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    Yep, have recent soil tests and I understand it’s a nitrogen hog so I’m planning on top dressing with urea. My potassium levels are good.


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  8. X-farmerdan

    X-farmerdan Well-Known Member

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    Hoosier,
    I'm in the mid-Atlantic where snow is not an issue. Therefore I might be disqualified from commenting about your concerns although I have planted Egyptian Wheat on a couple of occasions - where I think I probably got my rates too wrong. So, it got me to thinking...always a dangerous event.

    I like math and numbers. I tend to think about plants per acre rather than pounds. But, I didn't when I seed my EW. My soil fertility is OK, and I did put a little urea on it after it got about 10-inches tall. It worked, but it was a little (!) thick.

    Let's talk about this. Think of a corn field with 30-inch rows. Typical. Think about what it looks like at maturity. On average, you're probably looking at 24-25,000 plants an acre.

    I only found once source telling how many Egyptian Wheat seeds per pound. We're going to need that to get back to plants per acre. The answer is 16,000. In my head I have a picture of one EW plant in every 6-inch square. Maybe that's too tight, but let's go with it. In round numbers there are 175,000 six inches squares in an acre. I think I want that many plants, too! Let's divide the 175,000 squares by 16,000 to get the rate in pounds per acre. Again, to just deal in round numbers, it's about 11 lbs. Now, that assumes 100% germination!

    I don't know what the typical germ rate is, but I'd guess it's 90% or less. Add a pound and we're at 12 lbs / acres, drilled.
    For broadcasting we might add another couple pounds to account for the seed that ends up too shallow or too deep or that gets eaten.
    Where are we? Depends on how many plants per acre you think are sufficient for your objective, the germination rate of the seed, and your planting technique. Seems like 13 or 14 lbs per acres would be adequate.

    Oops! Isn't that the "recommended rate" - lbs/acre?
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2019 at 2:22 PM
  9. Tap

    Tap Well-Known Member

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    Green Cover Seed says it's 20,000 seeds per pound.
     
  10. George

    George Well-Known Member

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    Over seeding makes for weak plants that fall over.

    G
     
  11. X-farmerdan

    X-farmerdan Well-Known Member

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    I see that now. My original source still says 16,000. Now what do we do? Seed and hope for the best!
     
  12. Tap

    Tap Well-Known Member

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    I wasn't disagreeing with you, I was just showing another source that showed seeds per pound.

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  13. X-farmerdan

    X-farmerdan Well-Known Member

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    I know. Just wanted to emphasize the variability in seed size and how tough getting plant population right can be....not that it's such a big deal. I appreciate the other reference, Tap!
     
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