With all the Varieties of seed for food plots to choose from and the overwhelming amounts of combination you can create, how do you decide? How I do that is look at the “Big Picture”, Decide what you want to accomplish, Think of time you would like to invest and Look at your local surroundings. For a long term food plot I start in the very early spring with a blend of Red and White clover, if you like Turkey hunting I would add some Chicory, These are cool season plantings so the earlier the better. Mow your plot for the first time in mid-June down to 3-6 inches to promote new tender growth and thicken plot for any type of dry summer. Now that you have the plot “base” set, you can do a Variety of things at your second mowing which should be when clover blooms and the blooms turn black, this will reseed plot. This is a time i will broadcast forage turnip, winter peas or any combination into plot and then mow, the clippings will cover the seed for germination. This plot will die off over winter, except for the perennial clovers and chicory, which with will grow for up to 5 years. Once established this plot is easily maintained for years to follow. For a Summer plot/ Fall plot I would suggest either a Soybean, Cow pea or combination of the 2. These are Legumes, like clovers fix nitrogen as they grow. The nitrogen they hold is great when the plot is followed by brassica, which uses a lot of nitrogen to grow. These plots are great for early season bowhunting and hold deer all summer long, draw back is that there is a time span where they “brown up” and are less palatable to deer. The deer will be back into the soybeans for late season to eat the beans which are full of carbs. Fall food plots are the easiest to grow, it is basically tilling the ground and planting. Fall plots are usually planted mid-July through September and are comprised of cool season plantings to resist and cold snaps that may occur. Typical seed for fall are Forage Turnip, Purple top Turnip, Winter Peas, Ground Hawg Radish and other Brassicas. These plantings are great for fall when use in right applications, they are cold tolerant and in most of them become more palatable to deer the colder it gets. The cold breaks the carbs down into sugars which deer crave and are very nutritious to get deer ready for the winter.
This is a broad out look on the ways Foodplots can be set up each location should be set up to match the surroundings. Fine tuning your foodplots, will amaze you on the deer that you will be able to hold in your area. In future articles I will touch on points that hopefully will help you with your plots and success with your upcoming seasons.
Boneyard Seed LLC