First ever food plot and expectations

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Elite
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First ever food plot and expectations

Unread postby Elite » Thu Dec 19, 2019 9:41 am

We moved in to our new house early Oct 2019 and this fall I was able to gather intel on how the deer move through the property. Our property is approximately 5 acres and surrounded by 35 acres of timber. The timber was clear cut 3 years ago. To the east of the house was soybeans this year. I have permission to hunt this 35 acres.
The deer walk behind our house on the transition line between hardwoods and thick brush. I'm going to have to cut some trees down to gain more sunlight, but this will be a transition plot for deer going to the main ag field to the east. I was thinking of an "L" shaped plot where the deer can eat in surrounding thick cover and then work their way to the ag field.
My main approach with the food plot is to plant something that will last until late December. We live in nw Wisconsin so our frosts arrive in mid to late September. I will probably have to bring in a tractor to knock down the thick brush and trees, then mow it down with a walk-behind brush cutter.
What would be your recommendations for seeds and brand?
Any other advice you could give would be helpful. I'm asking this now so I can mentally start preparing.

(The aerial image is poor, but the shape is similar to what I think the plot would look like. I would like the west to east plot to be 60×30 yards in size).

Thanks!
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moog5050
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Re: First ever food plot and expectations

Unread postby moog5050 » Thu Dec 19, 2019 9:48 am

One property I hunt the deer will hit brassicas from summer through late season. Its a great plot for the entire season. The good news is that the brassicas tolerate heavy grazing. The other property which is adjacent to farm fields, the deer will not hit brassicas until its a food of last resort, mostly post late season. So its not a good kill plot at all with brassicas. This year I went with clover, but that's done by early Nov. in terms of a food source. I will say that frigid forage brassicas have grown really well every time I plant them.
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Hawthorne
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Re: First ever food plot and expectations

Unread postby Hawthorne » Thu Dec 19, 2019 9:59 am

Good advice. I like the mixture of winter rye or oats and tillage radishes. I’ve had good luck with Buck forage oats. I buy my seeds from rural king.
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Re: First ever food plot and expectations

Unread postby matt1336 » Thu Dec 19, 2019 10:01 am

The shape of the plot is important imo. I’d try to shape it so a deer can stand on any edge and see the entire plot. In other words make it huntable with as bullet prof access as possible. Those does will bed right on the edges in a place that they can watch access, if you allow it. Look at Jeff Sturgis’ stuff on YouTube...lots of good stuff there.
Get a soil sample and don’t skimp on getting your soil in as good as shape as possible. If you don’t get the soil right, you won’t be happy with the results.
As far as seed...in our northern wisconsin property...I think I’ve finally convinced my family to do a spring planting of oat or rye. In fall kill the spring planting off and plant a mix of winter wheat and some type of brassica. A small plot like you have will get chewed off quick. You also might want to consider a perennial mix but that’ll take a year or two to really take off.
IMO.
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Re: First ever food plot and expectations

Unread postby matt1336 » Thu Dec 19, 2019 12:23 pm

I meant “can’t” stand on the edge and see the whole plot.
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Re: First ever food plot and expectations

Unread postby Robert » Thu Dec 19, 2019 1:29 pm

Purple Top Turnips and Dakion Radishes, spread right before a rain in the middle of July. Do a soil test and spread the recommended fertilizer. Just buy the seed from a local feed mill.
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Re: First ever food plot and expectations

Unread postby Findian » Thu Dec 19, 2019 2:25 pm

I’ve done a lot of food plots, they all work but the one thing that helps the most is a good water hole. And bullet prof accesses.
20F8344E-B190-406A-B8CE-2CFD963798B5.jpeg
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Elite
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Re: First ever food plot and expectations

Unread postby Elite » Fri Dec 20, 2019 1:15 am

Findian wrote:I’ve done a lot of food plots, they all work but the one thing that helps the most is a good water hole. And bullet prof accesses.
20F8344E-B190-406A-B8CE-2CFD963798B5.jpeg


The plot would set up for a west or north wind. Accessing it from the house to the south. What shape do you recommend?
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Re: First ever food plot and expectations

Unread postby Cchez » Fri Dec 20, 2019 2:18 am

I know a guy in your area who does food plots and land management for a living. He's a super nice guy and does our plots for us on our private land. I'm sure if you contacted him he could point you in the right direction on what to plant and where to get it. Tell him Codie from Duluth gave you his info.

https://www.facebook.com/pages/category ... 929370205/
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Re: First ever food plot and expectations

Unread postby Findian » Fri Dec 20, 2019 2:44 am

Before you even make a food plot the best thing you can do is figure out how the deer use the property then decide on the shape that you would want to use. my favorite is multiple mini plots or pockets with different types of plants within the vicinity of a bow shot. assuming that you probably have corn planted In the East field or wheat this coming up fall you’re going to want to try Something green like clovers, winter wheat( plant a week or two before you want to hunt it ) brassicas, trefoil/alfalfa mix. Just have a different variety of plants so you can hunt it from early to rut time frame. Late season food plots never worked out for me mainly because I get too much snow and I never tried planting corn. And don’t over hunt it. I’ve been doing them since 2012 and the number one thing is to figure out the access, to get in and out without the deer getting bumped.
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Re: First ever food plot and expectations

Unread postby Elite » Fri Dec 20, 2019 5:41 am

Cchez wrote:I know a guy in your area who does food plots and land management for a living. He's a super nice guy and does our plots for us on our private land. I'm sure if you contacted him he could point you in the right direction on what to plant and where to get it. Tell him Codie from Duluth gave you his info.

https://www.facebook.com/pages/category ... 929370205/


Thanks for this!
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Re: First ever food plot and expectations

Unread postby Elite » Fri Dec 20, 2019 5:49 am

Findian wrote:Before you even make a food plot the best thing you can do is figure out how the deer use the property then decide on the shape that you would want to use. my favorite is multiple mini plots or pockets with different types of plants within the vicinity of a bow shot. assuming that you probably have corn planted In the East field or wheat this coming up fall you’re going to want to try Something green like clovers, winter wheat( plant a week or two before you want to hunt it ) brassicas, trefoil/alfalfa mix. Just have a different variety of plants so you can hunt it from early to rut time frame. Late season food plots never worked out for me mainly because I get too much snow and I never tried planting corn. And don’t over hunt it. I’ve been doing them since 2012 and the number one thing is to figure out the access, to get in and out without the deer getting bumped.


The access should work out perfectly. It will likely be a spot for afternoon sits. I have never seen a deer in the bean field in the mornings while driving to work, so hunting the plot in the mornings would be more damaging. Do you typically buy a seed that has the above mentioned mixed in?
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Re: First ever food plot and expectations

Unread postby Findian » Fri Dec 20, 2019 6:06 am

Elite wrote:
Findian wrote:Before you even make a food plot the best thing you can do is figure out how the deer use the property then decide on the shape that you would want to use. my favorite is multiple mini plots or pockets with different types of plants within the vicinity of a bow shot. assuming that you probably have corn planted In the East field or wheat this coming up fall you’re going to want to try Something green like clovers, winter wheat( plant a week or two before you want to hunt it ) brassicas, trefoil/alfalfa mix. Just have a different variety of plants so you can hunt it from early to rut time frame. Late season food plots never worked out for me mainly because I get too much snow and I never tried planting corn. And don’t over hunt it. I’ve been doing them since 2012 and the number one thing is to figure out the access, to get in and out without the deer getting bumped.


The access should work out perfectly. It will likely be a spot for afternoon sits. I have never seen a deer in the bean field in the mornings while driving to work, so hunting the plot in the mornings would be more damaging. Do you typically buy a seed that has the above mentioned mixed in?



I buy from my local ag dealer or from Deer Creek Seed ( the owner is my grandmas neighbor ) they have some good blends. Succotash blend, autumn blend, and brassica blend are good from him.
Also if you can not get away from your plot in the afternoon have some one drive by with an atv or tractor to get you.
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seazofcheeze
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Re: First ever food plot and expectations

Unread postby seazofcheeze » Fri Dec 20, 2019 7:33 am

I'm not sure what your deer density is like, but there's a good chance that plot will be browsed to death by early November. Make it bigger if you can to help fight grazing pressure. I had some plots planted in imperial whitetail "wintergreens" (brassica mix) and the deer absolutely hammered those plots once it got cold.

I also agree with others, get your soil tested and dont skimp on ingredients to balance pH and fertilizer to the extent your budget allows. Also, if you can rent or borrow a no-till drill, you will save yourself a lot of headaches with weed germination.
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Re: First ever food plot and expectations

Unread postby Elite » Fri Dec 20, 2019 10:21 am

seazofcheeze wrote:I'm not sure what your deer density is like, but there's a good chance that plot will be browsed to death by early November. Make it bigger if you can to help fight grazing pressure. I had some plots planted in imperial whitetail "wintergreens" (brassica mix) and the deer absolutely hammered those plots once it got cold.

I also agree with others, get your soil tested and dont skimp on ingredients to balance pH and fertilizer to the extent your budget allows. Also, if you can rent or borrow a no-till drill, you will save yourself a lot of headaches with weed germination.


Our deer density was pretty high this summer and early fall until the beans were cut in late October. They seemed to spread out when that happened. I've been told to keep micro plots small (acre or less) because mature bucks won't hit them in daylight if they're bigger. Any evidence to support this theory?


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