Features of growing winter wheat
Winter wheat is a grain crop that is prized for its high yields and unpretentiousness. Its grain is used to make cereals, pasta and baked goods, and wheat bran is used to feed farm animals. The straw from this variety is also of great nutritional value. It is also added to paper and animal bedding..
Characteristics of culture and stages of its development
This wheat variety is called winter because the grains are sown immediately after the previous harvest. When a culture hits the ground, it goes through its development in several stages. Growth rate depends on climate, soil composition and other conditions. Experts distinguish 6 phases of winter wheat development:
- Seedling is the germination of seeds that occurs after sowing. The total period of the period is from 15 to 25, then the plants enter the winter. Ate to plant them late, seedlings continue in the spring after warming.
- Tillering is the process of forming lateral shoots on the stems and roots. The bushiness of plants can be affected by the number of seeds that were sown in the ground, as well as the depth of their setting..
- Tube out is the period that begins when the first knot appears on the main stem. The process takes place in the spring, about a month after the resumption of the growing season..
- Heading – the appearance of spikelets on the shoots.
- Flowering begins 4-5 days after spikelets appear and lasts about a week. In a separate spike, flowers appear first on the lower part, and then on the lateral and upper.
- Ripening is a long stage in which the grains form in the spikelets and gradually lose moisture. Grains of milky ripeness (40-60% moisture) appear in 2 weeks. Then comes the wax phase of ripeness, the percentage of water in the grains is from 20 to 40%. Full ripeness is the stage when the grain is 15-20% water and becomes hard.
The growing season of winter wheat can range from 275 to 350 days, including the winter period. This period depends on the time of planting seeds in the ground and climatic conditions. In spring, the processes resume when the temperature reaches 5 ᴼС.
Planting and care technology
Winter wheat cultivation technology is a long-term process. Productivity increases significantly on fertile soils in the presence of constant precipitation in the warm season, as well as in the absence of severe frosts..
Requirements for soil and climate conditions
Wheat will give a good harvest on fertile soils, the acidity of which ranges from 6 to 7.5. Sufficiently moist chernozems or other types of soil that contain a large amount of nutrients are suitable for it. The amount of the harvest also depends on the relief. Plants grow and develop poorly in low swampy areas.
Modern varieties of winter wheat are highly frost-resistant. With a good layer of snow, these plants can withstand temperatures as low as -20-30 ᴼС. However, in the absence of snow, plants can die even at -15 ᴼС..
For such wheat, temperature fluctuations in the spring are especially dangerous. If frosts have arisen after the vegetation processes have resumed, they can completely destroy the crop..
It is important to fertilize different varieties of winter wheat on time and correctly, otherwise the harvest will turn out to be meager. There are two main ways to apply fertilizers: root top dressing (in the ground) and foliar, or foliar. This crop can be fed several times, depending on the phase of its growing season:
- during planting – potassium, phosphorus, organic fertilizers;
- nitrogen supplements – in the spring, as they are quickly washed out of the soil.
One of the main ways to improve the quality of the crop by adding fertilizers is foliar feeding..
Leaf top dressing of winter wheat in spring with urea allows you to get large heavy grains and increase their number. Unlike other ammonium fertilizers (ammonia water and nitrate), this substance does not burn plants.
Treatment for diseases and weeds
During the germination period, wheat develops poorly if weeds interfere with it. Winter wheat herbicides are chemical solutions that fight weeds. They are usually introduced into the soil in April and May, when the activity of unwanted plants increases. Some combine nitrogen fertilization with herbicide treatments.
Diseases of winter wheat are various bacterial lesions (black, yellow, basal bacteriosis), putrefactive processes in the roots, fungal lesions (fusarium) and others. For each disease there are special preparations that are introduced into the soil or sprayed with green mass.
Winter wheat is grown in temperate climates. It is a high-yielding crop whose grains and stems are used in the food industry and agriculture. However, the yield will not be high if you do not follow all the rules for growing wheat. It will grow well only on certain types of soil with a special fertilization and irrigation regime..