Oat Tops, Milky Oats
An easy to grow herbaceous annual. I often companion plant oats with red clover or Ashwagandha. Medium water and full sun. Plant the seed a few inches apart and ¼ deep. I cover with Agribon 19 to help retain moisture for germination. I remove the Agrigon after the seedlings are about 3 inches tall. If you have quail, you may want to leave it on top longer.
Both the Milky Oat seed and leaves are used for medicine. However, I prefer the seed head and after harvest, use the grass/leaf as a chop and drop mulch. Once I have determined the seed is ready (check out the video to see when the time is right) with my fingers I grab the seed heads and gently pull them off the stem. It is strangely satisfying and an easy harvest that goes quickly with a bountiful collection of milky seeds when I am finished.
A significant amount my harvest is used for a fresh herb tincture. That seed is processed immediately, or store in refrigerator for not more than a day or two. The rest I spread in a thin layer on a tray and dry it low and slow at 95-100 F for about 48-72 hours. Make sure it is dry before you pack in plastic containers or it will mold. Long-term, put it in a cool, dark, dry location for up to 3 years.
As mentioned above I make a lot of fresh milky oat tincture. It is great as a daily tonic to treat anxiety and depression. Dry I use it in my Chillax Tea and Bone Broth Mix. It has mild flavor and is a great bulking agent for the herb blends, with the added anti-anxiety herbal action.