| To study the effects of different straw returning and tillage modes on grain yield and quality of wheat following rice,using Huaimai 36 as the material, the effects on seedling emergence, dry matter translocation, grain yield and quality were determined in the lower reaches along Huaihe River. The two-factor split-plot test was designed, with total rice straw returning to the field (S1) and non-rice straw returning to the field (S0) as 2 main plots, and 3 tillage modes no-tillage (T1), rotary tillage (T2) and ploughing tillage (T3) as subplots. Under the conditions of suitable soil moisture content (78.6% and 72.5%), the results showed that under the treatment of total rice straw returning, no-tillage reduced the emergence rate of wheat seedlings and evenness of emergence, which was 14.04% and 28.46% lower than that under no rice straw returning treatment, resulting in a significant decrease in spike number by 4.37%. Ploughing tillage was beneficial to reduce the negative effects of straw returning on wheat emergence, and its emergence rate and evenness of emergence were better than those of rotary tillage and no-tillage, which was conducive to improve the quality of sowing. Ploughing tillage also had a larger photosynthetic area after jointing, promoted the production of photosynthetic substances after flowering, increased the grain number per spike and 1 000-grain weight, and finally achieved yield increase, with an average increase rate of 12.85% compared with that under no-tillage. Rice straw returning and tillage modes both improved the processing and nutritional quality of wheat. Therefore, total rice straw returning to the field combined with ploughing tillage was helpful to realize the high yield and quality of wheat in this region, which can be used as a better management practice for wheat following rice in the lower reaches along Huaihe River.