Fertilizing Fall Food Plots - Wilkes CO.

Thread starter #1
Guys --

I need some advice. I planted some food plots on October 3rd. This was the first year planting new log decks, so we didn't get soil samples. Will next year. We did 2 tons per acre of lime, and 13-13-13 when we planted. We did a basic 10-way mix this year. It is coming up great after that massive rain we had...Wilkes Co.

My question is should I follow up with an additional round of fertilizer after the initial 13-13-13 in a few weeks and if so, what?

Thanks in advance!

@Canuck5 I know you'll have a POV!

Day 1:

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Day 14:
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Dbender

Senior Member
You could take a sample now and then add what it recommends.
Most of your topsoil was probably pushed off when clearing the dock. I'd wait until it thickens up and the temps get a little cooler then hit it with 150 lbs of nitrogen per acre if you don't get a soil sample for this year.
 
Thread starter #6
You could take a sample now and then add what it recommends.
Most of your topsoil was probably pushed off when clearing the dock. I'd wait until it thickens up and the temps get a little cooler then hit it with 150 lbs of nitrogen per acre if you don't get a soil sample for this year.
Ok. I doubt I'll get a sample, but I might just to start thinking about next year...and see what it is at right now. Some areas really came in great, some are a little spotty...but I figured that would be the case this year...
 
Thread starter #8
I think getting a soil sample now would be skewed due to the recent application of fertilizer.
Many recommend doing soil samples in late winter.
Yeah fertilizer is just two weeks in...I've read that you should fertilize with 34-0-0 several times during the season...that could get expensive so trying to figure out if it is worth it...
 

Milkman

Retired Moderator
I have seen the UGA soil samples tell you how to break up the N applications like you mentioned. You get the sample bags and return them at your county agents office. It doesn’t necessarily have to be a sample from your county.
 

Dbender

Senior Member
If it's patchy at this stage it isn't a fert issue. More than likely buried a little deep or not enough seed. Give it another rain see how it looks. It won't hurt to hit them with the nitrogen when the temps cool off and weeds aren't trying to.compete. brassicas love nitrogen and it will help bare spots thicken up. I wouldn't hit it more them once with nitrogen I've never noticed any more deer activity with multiple split applications vs just one.
 
Thread starter #11
If it's patchy at this stage it isn't a fert issue. More than likely buried a little deep or not enough seed. Give it another rain see how it looks. It won't hurt to hit them with the nitrogen when the temps cool off and weeds aren't trying to.compete. brassicas love nitrogen and it will help bare spots thicken up. I wouldn't hit it more them once with nitrogen I've never noticed any more deer activity with multiple split applications vs just one.
Yeah I think it is patchy because we got a serious gully washer out there...but I think once the moisture stabilizes I'll see how it comes up and then decide...maybe one more application just to keep it going this year...
 

Dbender

Senior Member
I'd overseed with wheat. It grows super quick and deer like it. I know I am going against the grain but in my experience clover isn't the best winter draw. I'd hold off on the clover until your dirt was "right" if you want to plant clover. Foodplots don't have to be complicated. Plow, spread seed/fert cover and wait on rain. Deer are coming for the fert, not the plants.
 
Thread starter #14
I'd overseed with wheat. It grows super quick and deer like it. I know I am going against the grain but in my experience clover isn't the best winter draw. I'd hold off on the clover until your dirt was "right" if you want to plant clover. Foodplots don't have to be complicated. Plow, spread seed/fert cover and wait on rain. Deer are coming for the fert, not the plants.
That's fair, the reason we didn't do clover this year was because they are new...need to get them worked and some top soil built up...maybe do that in a year or two...
 

Canuck5

Senior Member
Once I have done a soil test and applied (mostly) what it recommended, I've never added more fertilizer after planting. Just me. And remember the soil test results are intended for farmers who have to grow a crop and make a living at it and for food plotters, a lot of "our" NPK is returned to the soil and not carried off in a grain wagon.

I think you've got a great start going there and remember that deer like young and tender and added fertilizer will make it grown lots quicker. Now, having said that, if you felt that you wanted to try something, buy 1 bag (just one) of 34-0-0 and broadcast it, over 1/4 acre, near an area you plan to hunt and see what the deers reaction is. It's what the deer prefer, that matters. Then next year, you can make a decision on what you want to do.

I try to keep the cost of venison to under $200/pound :)


Fertilizer.JPG
Nitrogen cycle.JPG
 

Canuck5

Senior Member
And just remember that these are compacted soil, logging decks, with most of the top soil, likely scrapped away. Next year you will be wondering where all the sweet gums and sickle pod came from, unfortunately. Rest assured, I am in the same boat with you, on a couple of plots.

Compacted soil won't allow rainfall or roots to penetrate, which makes things hard to grow, as well.
 
Thread starter #17
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This is the 10-Way mix we put out, and that picture is after 15 days exactly...can anyone tell what is what in that picture??? I have no idea what the little plants look like except for wheat, which I saw a lot of growing up!
 

Dbender

Senior Member
Pics too small for me to tell anything. 3 of those will be gone after the first frost. 4 are sliw growers at first so more than likely you just need more rain. I would still hit with nitrogen after it cools off. 300 lbs of trip 13 on a stripped loading deck is weak.
 
Thread starter #19
Yeah that is a clip from a trail camera...given it is 2 hours away the best I have right now...will probably add some nitrogen depending how it looks here in the near future...I'm pretty sure the blotchiness is areas where the rain we had pooled and/or covered the seed and it is still wet...assume it will emerge once it dries out...

So on that 10-Way, what dies after frost? What is slow growing? What grows and dies when?
 

Dbender

Senior Member
Cowpeas, buckwheat, soybeans will be gone after the frost. Clover turnips rape radish are slower growers. They will slow way down if it gets cold early too. The wheat,rye,oats look basically identical at this stage so you won't be able to tell them apart. The wet seed may germinate or may have rotted? You'll be able to tell better in a couple weeks. As it is it looks fine, just depends on what you are shooting for. I like mine to be a solid, dark green carpet and plant accordingly.
 
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