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Wild oats Photo Identification

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  • Pest Type: Weed
  • Crops Affected: Soybeans, Corn, Pulse crops, Canola, Wheat, Barley
  • Scientific Name: Avena fatua
Description
Roots are extensive and fibrous. Stems are smooth, stout, about 2 to 3 feet tall and in bunches of 3 to 5 hollow stems. Leaves are long and thin, about 2.5 to 8 inches long and about ¼ to ¾ inch wide.

Propagation
Annual. Seeds. Seeds of wild oats can be viable only 4 days after flowering begins and they can lie dormant, in the soil, for many years.

Seedling
Leaves are soft with very few widely spaced hairs. The ring (ligule) on the inside of the leaf blade is large, membranous, whitish, and pointed. The youngest emerging leaves often twist counterclockwise. Only one cotyledon emerges.

Mature Plant
Stems: Erect, branched from base usually with 3 or 5 stems, 1 to 4 feet tall at maturity, hairless.


Roots: Fibrous, extensive.


Leaves: Flat, up to 8 inches long, up to 5/8 inch wide, prominent ligule at base of blade, base of leaf blade usually slightly hairy, no auricles. Sheath nearly round, sometimes hairy, with split margins.

Distribution
Found especially in fields under continuous cropping to small grains in North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota and Montana and prairie Canadian provinces. Also found throughout the United States except in the southeast U.S. (Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, the Carolinas, Mississippi, Arkansas, Tennessee and West Virginia) and the DelMarVa peninsula.

Similar Species
Tame oat



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