Spring-germinating, summer annual, seed-propagating grass weed, very similar to cultivated oats. Germinates from a depth of 20 cm in some cases. Chiefly in moist chalky, heavy clay and loam soils.
Common wild oat [Avena fatua]
Youngest leaf rolled to the left, linearly pointed, bottom leaf margin with hairs (Picture 1). Ligules serrated white to yellowish, tapering gradually to a sharp point, auricles absent (Picture 2). An easily seen identifying feature is the hair on the leaf blade margins. Compared to the cultivated oat, the panicle is conspicuously large, the spikelets are two- to three-flowered (Picture 3) with bristlyglumes. The dark, curved awns are up to 4 cm long (Picture 4). Each plant produces approx. 150-500 seeds that remain viable in the soil for several years.