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Winter Wheat

Winter wheat is a unique type of wheat! Winter wheat is planted in the fall and then gets covered with snow. This would kill other types of wheat, but winter wheat simply goes dormant the winter. In fact, the snow acts like a blanket to keep the wheat warm. Then, in the spring, the wheat starts growing again! Winter wheat is grown in the southern Prairies because the winters are milder there.

Winter wheat is planted in the fall and lays dormant over the winter.

There are several reasons why farmers may choose to grow winter wheat:
  • It is ready a month earlier than other crops, which spreads out the harvest. Spreading out the harvest helps make sure the farmer has enough time to get all their crops off the field.
  • It produces a lot of seeds and is in demand across the world for flour and livestock feed.
  • Winter wheat has a head start on the weeds in the spring, allowing the wheat to win the competition against the weeds for nutrients.
An illustrated bird stands on a branch eating haskap berries.

Next time you see farmers seeding in the fall, you’ll know they are planting winter wheat!

An illustrated landscape with a golden wheat crop and Canadian Geese flying in the sky.

Winter wheat remains in the vegetative phase during winter and resumes growth in the early spring.