White millet is a warm season, cultivated grass species. It has been grown for centuries for it seed, as a forage and human consumption. In the UK it is generally used as a game cover component, or in a winter bird food mixture to provide food during the hungry gap, when natural resources are exhausted.
It is an annual species.
In terms of game cover and farmland bird food, white millet produces a larger amount of seed than red millet and flowers slightly earlier.
Not frost hardy.
Sowing Rate Advice
10kgs per acre / 25kgs per ha.
Sometimes sown as a pure stand.
Mixture Sowing Rate Advice
0.5kgs - 2kgs per acre / 1.25kgs - 5kg per ha.
When sown in a mixture with other seed bearing and cover species.
Ideal Sowing Time
The millets are normally spring sown, when soil temperatures are rising, from late April onwards.
Plant in the spring to ensure the seeds are available going into the winter.
White millet is a rounded, lemon shaped seed, it is a beige colour. It has a shiny, smooth texture and is approximately 3mm in size.
The seedling produces a hairy, short but wide 1st true leaf, before developing much longer leaves as it matures.
The plant produces upright, stiff culms. White millets tend to stay a pale white to green colour as it matures before terminating. The leaves are long, broad and hairy, with a short often hairy ligule. Notably the leaf sheaths and nodes are also hairy. The inflorescence is a compact, upright shape, unlike the loosely nodding red millet panicle. The plant has shallow, but fibrous roots.
It may also be used to thicken up areas of maize, to create 'flushing points'. If this is the case the millet is broadcast after the maize has be drilled. The seed heads of white millet tend to stay more clustered and compact, while the red millet seed head becomes more open.
Works well withWhite millet combines well with red millet, to widen the seed shedding window for farmland and game birds.
You can find White Millet in the following mixtures