My first try at a foodplot (pic heavyish)

Thread starter #1

ddgarcia

Useless Billy CFO
Sooooo.........this property (Greene Co) has been in my wife's family for many years and was leased to a group of hunters for most of those same many years. My wife inherited it a couple years ago and it was time to get to work. Didn't think to get "before" photos so had to improvise. The edge of the plot is in the foreground of the first and the second is just off another edge to give some idea of what I started with.

FPprep3.jpg FPprep2.jpg
This is an area where I THINK the older generation of leasees had a plot a long time ago but am not really sure. It's a hardwood bottom with a couple persimmons trees and a few oaks. Started with the chainsaw and Kubota cutting anything under about 12" and draging some of it off. Once I realized just how long that was going to take, and I'd STILL have to do something abut the stumps, I hired a guy with a stump puller and forestry mulcher to come in and finish the job. He wasn't cheap but did excellent work and I'll likely call him again when I get set to do my next one.

After some clean up, a couple rounds of Glyphosphate and a couple tillings to kill weeds I had it looking like this in June.

food plot.jpg

That's the southern about 1/3 of the plot. It's about 1.75ac total, about 300ydsx40yds, minus basal area at a guess.

So about 5 weeks ago I spread 3 tons of lime and on the 14th I spread 1000lbs of 19-19-19 all based on the soil report. I was going to plant on the 22nd but got too much rain that night and it was too muddy to prep the bed. It was dry for a couple days and with MORE rain in the forecast I took half a day off on the 19th prepped, planted and cultipacked. Thankfully I have a VERY easygoing boss, even for a non-hunter, and said "Knock yourself out" the afternoon of the 18th.

FPprep.jpg

Took me about 4hrs by myself to till, plant and cultipack.

Ultimately I plan on this being a clover plot but started this year with a 100lbs of a blend of clover (crimson in this mix), peas (IC and AWP), buckwheat, oats, barley, radishes (Diakon), turnips (Purple Top) and Rape. Now this blend was not in my plan. A friend that was helping me with another project on this property and that I had shown this to and talked with about it calls me one afternoon and says he found THE seed blend that I wanted to plant and had got me 2 bags (50lb) based on what the guy at the store recommended for the acreage. My original plan was for Durana, ICP and buckwheat but didn't want to hurt his feelings when he showed up at my house with it and I saw what ELSE was in it.

To this mix I added another 50lbs of ICP and will overseed with Durana maybe someplace around mid Oct. Will play that by ear depending on how the growth is looking once the animals discover it. I know they are "in the area" as I have already killed two deer here, seen several more and the first year I hunted this area in front of me had many rubs and a couple scrapes in it when I scouted it.

I went down Sunday to do some more work and low and behold what did I find?

FPprep4.jpg

FP1.jpg

The ICP's were sprouting like crazy and there was some of the clover and buckwheat as well coming in. This was just my observations from the edge as I didn't want to walk in and crush sprouts just to admire it.

Now I had several people try to dissuade me from planting this early as well as all the threads in the forum here discouraging it but I wanted this ready for bow season and am hopeful that as the weather has been relatively mild and the fact that this plot is shady, with very little of it exposed to direct sunlight for an extended period of time during the day, that it will thrive and be lush come Sept 12th.

I will say that reading the Army Worm thread 30min ago was NOT encouraging :banginghe:banginghe:banginghe, but what am I going to do now?

If this does turn out successful I will be doing similar in a couple more areas on the property in the near(?) future.

Will update as I see progress and hopefully there will be a pic or two of some nice bucks, dead hopefully, in it soon. It's only about 35min from my home or work to the property so I am there fairly regular and count myself EXTREMELY fortunate for that.
 

Canuck5

Senior Member
Food plotting is trial and error for "your" area, wherever that might be. You will find something that worked great and something that didn't. Just pay attention, take pictures and take notes, and like us all, learn.

You are early for my tastes, but you could have the best bow plot ever! I'd also save my Durana Clover money for next year, primarily because lime will take 6 months to work and close to 3 years to max out. Although Durana will preform in less than ideal conditions, I think you need to take this first year and learn.

Just a couple of observations:

1. 150 pounds of seed on 1.75 acres might be light.
2. You have heavy shade.
3. I know you plan to over seed and I would suggest you do that before leaf drop and I might go with wheat or cereal rye, and add 200 pounds of that, to whatever is still growing. Over seeding after leaf drop will lessen your chance of success. Seed to soil contact is important.

What grows best in shade?

Shade tolerance.JPG Shade tolerance 1.JPG Shade tolerance 2.JPG

I might lean towards a mix of crimson and arrowleaf clovers, 30 pounds of each on your plot, this first year and see how they work. They are annuals, but they are also heavy reseeders. Do that before leaf drop too.

Buy a box of 20 mule team Borax and carefully, just spread 2 pounds of it on your plot.

Boron.jpg

If things go reasonably good this year, work on your Durana plot in 2021.

Durana Graph.JPG

shade clover.JPG
 
Thread starter #8

ddgarcia

Useless Billy CFO
Thanks for the input @Canuck5 . That's the kinda stuff I need. Unfortunately (possibly) I've already purchased the Durana, looking ahead, and might not be able to return it and doubt (?) it will keep til next year. I will look into trading it back to the retailer, little local store, in exchange for what you suggested.

On another note, what is the purpose of the Borax?
 
Looks good. I've planted in the shade just like that and the deer never touched the iron clay peas, I've been told my soil was not right for the peas to be palatable.

Canuck, why the 20 Mule Team Borax? Thanks
 

DSGB

Senior Member
Hope all of your hard work pays off. I'm trying my hand at a small plot for the first time this year. Will be interesting to see what works and what doesn't. There are some good folks here that have been a great help.
 

DSGB

Senior Member
I'm pretty sure the borax is for insect control.
 

Canuck5

Senior Member
Thanks for the input @Canuck5 . That's the kinda stuff I need. Unfortunately (possibly) I've already purchased the Durana, looking ahead, and might not be able to return it and doubt (?) it will keep til next year. I will look into trading it back to the retailer, little local store, in exchange for what you suggested.

On another note, what is the purpose of the Borax?
Your Durana will keep till next year, with likely a slight reduction in germination. The inoculant, that is in the coating on the Durana, will likely die, but you can retreat that, just before planting, with a $10 bag of inoculant that you can order, online. Code B

If you choose to plant the Durana, I would still add the crimson, and arrowleaf. you/we just don't know what is going to work in your plot, yet. It's called Plan B! :)

If you look at your soil test and if you told them you were going to plant clover, I am 99% sure, they listed 1 pound/acre of "B" .... Boron, which is basically Borax.

https://www.cropnutrition.com/nutrient-knowledge/boron
 
Thread starter #16

ddgarcia

Useless Billy CFO
Your Durana will keep till next year, with likely a slight reduction in germination. The inoculant, that is in the coating on the Durana, will likely die, but you can retreat that, just before planting, with a $10 bag of inoculant that you can order, online. Code B

If you choose to plant the Durana, I would still add the crimson, and arrowleaf. you/we just don't know what is going to work in your plot, yet. It's called Plan B! :)

If you look at your soil test and if you told them you were going to plant clover, I am 99% sure, they listed 1 pound/acre of "B" .... Boron, which is basically Borax.

https://www.cropnutrition.com/nutrient-knowledge/boron
They did list Boron 1lb/ac but only for "Southern Peas" (ICP I guess?). All the clovers are showing good.:fine:

Will add it anyway just to be on the safe side. An ounce of protection and suchlike...........
 

Canuck5

Senior Member
New set of food plots that have been limed according to a soil test? For this first year, I'd give the Standard Alabama Deer Combo a try. Let everything go to seed next year, then look where your clovers did best, in the shadier spots. Those shadier spots could be upgraded to a perennial clover in 2021.

Then the rest of the plot, look at attraction foods. Your plot doesn't have to be 100% in any one thing.


Cool season seed.JPG
Crude protein.JPG
Peak Utilization.JPG
Proudction of cool season crops.JPG
 
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