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Wheat Production in Mississippi

When is the best time to plant wheat?

The optimum time to plant wheat for grain production is within 10-14 days of the average first frost date in the fall. See Mississippi First Freeze Dates.

This generally corresponds with:

Geographical Region of Mississippi:

North and Central Mississippi: October 15 - November 10
Mississippi Delta: October 20 - November 15
South Mississippi: November 1 - November 25
Coastal: November 15 - December 10

Winter wheat grown for grain should be planted early enough to establish seedlings and begin tillering in the fall before winter causes the plants to enter dormancy.

Planting too early unnecessarily exposes wheat to many potential development, fertility, and numerous pest problems (fall drought stress, spring freeze injury, Barley yellow dwarf and Hessian fly) which ultimately reduce yield. Conversely, late planting may not expose wheat plants to cool temperatures long enough for head development to occur in the spring, particularly with some late-maturing, northern-adapted varieties.

If your objective is to grow small grains for fall and winter grazing, you should begin planting about four to six weeks before the frost date, if adequate soil moisture is available.

This generally corresponds with:

Geographical Region of Mississippi:

North and Central Mississippi: September 15
Mississippi Delta: September 25
South Mississippi: October 1
Coastal: October 15