Oats are not particularly cold hardy, so a summer planted crop will die back, holding the soil in place, and providing ample carbon-rich organic matter to till under before planting spring vegetables. Continue reading below for some tips on how to grow oats from seed.

Avena sativa
Family: Poaceae

Exposure: Full sun to partial shade

The fast growth of this soil builder makes it ideal for sowing in the spring for erosion control or quick tilling. Planted in August, oats will put on a lot of growth and, in most winters, will be killed by frost. Hardy to Zone 8: -12°C (-10°F).

Sow to a depth of 2-4cm (1-1½").

Oats are less weedy and tenacious than fall rye, and are easily worked into the soil with a garden fork. Allow two weeks before planting the next crop.