Not a good plan
October 09, 2009 at 8:48pm
There are two types of oats.
Spring oats are grown in climates with cool nights in the summer (Minnesota, Illinois, Canada, Scandinavia). They are planted in the spring and harvest in the fall. Spring oats are very susceptible to cold damage and may turn brown or die when temps fall into the 20s. Some spring oats are sold as deer food plot seed even though they do not produce much forage and easily freeze out. There is/was a company in south Louisiana selling ‘Jerry’ (variety) oat and advertising it as very cold tolerant. Jerry is a very winter – tender South Dakota oat – clearly false advertising.
Winter oats are planted in the fall and grow all winter, with harvest in the early summer. They are much more tolerant of cold weather, some more so than others. Winter oats are frequently used for forage or ‘dual-purpose’ and generally are much leafier and more attractive than spring oats to foraging animals.
Feed oats are any oat seed sold as animal (Horse) feed. Feed oats can be a locally grown winter oats, but are often spring oats not suited for planting here. Also: almost all oat varieties are protected by plant variety patent. They can not be legally bought as ‘feed oats’ and use for planting anything – food plots, pastures, etc.. You and the seed store that sold them with a germ test – clearly knowing you intended to plant them – are legally vulnerable to a law with by the company that owns marketing rights.
I strongly suggest that you purchase a good winter oat intended for deer foodplots or at least winter pasture. In the grand scheme of things, seed cost are pretty minimal in a hunting season and can make a big difference. Oats are not all equal. I’m don’t sell oats fwiw, but I am by profession very informed.