How to Estimate Wheat Yield

Wheat heads emerging near Marianna, FL. Photo Credit: J. Thompson

Wheat heads emerging near Marianna, FL. Photo Credit: J. Thompson

This time of year, some wheat farmers may be wondering what kind of yields they will end up with. Yield estimates this week from Jackson County looked very promising, with yields estimated at 84 bushels per acre and 70 bushels per acre at 2 different farms.

Doing a yield estimate is relatively simple to do. All you will need is a tape measure, a pen and pad, and a calculator.

To begin, randomly select at least 5 spots in a field to be averaged for taking measurements. At each spot, count the number of harvestable heads from 5 foot of row. From that same spot, count the number of kernels on at least 5 heads and take the average. Normally, there are between 18-26 kernels per head. Finally determine the distance in inches between rows.

To calculate yield in bushels per acre, use the formula below:

Yield = [(Heads per 5 ft. x Kernels per Head) ÷ Row Spacing] x 0.48

For more information on estimating wheat yield, see the publication titled Estimating Winter Wheat Grain Yields.

 

 

Estimating Wheat Yield

Wheat field with an estimated yield of 52 bu./acre in Washington County. Credit: Doug Mayo

Wheat field with an estimated yield of 52 bu./acre in Washington County. Credit: Doug Mayo

Much of the wheat crop around the panhandle is finishing grain-fill and starting to dry down. As harvest time for wheat draws near, many growers are busy planting peanuts and cotton on other fields. However, it may prove useful to take a small amount of time from your busy schedule to field estimate wheat yields.

Doing a yield estimate is relatively simple to do. All you will need is a tape measure, a pen and pad, and a calculator.

To begin, randomly select at least 5 spots in a field to take measurements. At each spot, measure the average number of harvestable heads per foot of row. From that same spot, count the number of kernels on at least 5 heads and take the average. Normally, there are between 18-26 kernels per head. Finally determine the distance in inches between rows.

To calculate yield in bushels per acre, use the formula below:

Yield = [(Heads x Kernels per Head) ÷ Row Spacing] x 0.48

For more information on estimating wheat yield, see the publication titled Estimating Winter Wheat Grain Yields.