Avena sativa

Also known as: spring oats

Cool season annual cereal


Plant Highlights

Cultural Traits


Planting depth: 1/2 - 2 inches (Shallow seeding in moist soil provides rapid emergence and reduces root rot disease)

Seeding Method

Seed Cost: .10-.20 $/lb.

Seed Availability: Readily available



with clover, pea, vetch or other legumes

Soil Improvements

Pest Control

Management Attributes



Uses in the Pacific Region

No information is available in this database on this topic.

Uses in Hawai`i

The Hawai`i Natural Resources Conservation Service Technical Guide includes common Oats (cv. 'Newdak', 'Steele', 'Swan', 'Valley'). Their specification describes common Oats as:

There is a NRCS specification supplement for Sugar Cane which includes optimal seeding dates by field office (ranging between 9/15 and 5/1), row widths, and management recommendations.

Evensen, Osgood and El-Swaify conducted five years of research with small grains as cover crops on sugarcane plantations for erosion and weed control. Variety trials for 51 cultivars of oat, barley, wheat, ryegrass and rye grain on Hawai`i, Molokai, and Lanai were compared. Of the oat trials, varieties 'Walken' and 'Coker' were the most promising (in terms of vigorous growth, rapid soil cover, weed suppression, low plant height, and lack of flowering). This information has applications for pineapple, coffee and tropical fruit tree orchards.

A. Arakaki, UH Cooperative Extension Service, reports using rust resistant cultivar 'Coker 234' successfully on abandoned pineapple plantations on Lanai.

For More Information


Evensen, C.I., Osgood, R.V., & El-Swaify, S.A. Small grain cover crops in Hawaii for erosion and weed control. A poster paper presented at the conference on "Cover Crops, Soil Quality and Ecosystems", March 12-14,1997.

1998. Managing Cover Crops Profitably, 2nd ed. Sustainable Agriculture Network, National Agricultural Library, Beltsville, USA. pp. 212.

USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, Hawai`i Field Office Technical Guide, Section IV, Code 340 "Cover and Green Manure Crop" May 1992. Pacific Islands Area Field Office Technical Guide (eFOTG) - East Area

Text last updated on 8/10/2007

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These webpages were originally generated under a grant program from Western SARE entitled "Covering New Ground: Tropical Cover Crops for Improving Soil Quality" EW98-012 (1998-2002).