plot advice

Post topo’s and Aerial photos for free advice. Food plotting, land manipulation, water holes, ect.
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wibowhunt4me
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plot advice

Unread postby wibowhunt4me » Tue Apr 02, 2013 2:44 pm

I lease 220 acres in Tigerton area. The logging company just clear cut a 160 acres of it. Opening alot of space for food plots. On top of our main ridge the logging company created a three lane highway. This plot would be between an acre to an acre and a half. I would like to plant something this spring and then mix something in later in the summer for the winter time. There is one field to the east of our property but it is used as a hay field. There are cornfields farther down the road from us. There are also 2 other spots that we are looking at putting quarter acre shooting plots and I would like to use them to compliment our main plot. The other problem we have is the lumber company cleared our cover leading to the top of our ridge. You can see 2 major tracks runlning up the side of the ridge where the logging company pulled the trees down to the bottom of the ridge. I would like to plant some sort of tall grass to help pull the deer out from a creek bottom up the ridge to our food plots. Any suggestions would be great. As soon as the frost gets out of the ground I plan to work up these areas and get my soil samples. I also plan to round up each area and hopefully go back in a month to work in pelletized lime. I would like to plant mid to late May.


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DEERSLAYER
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Re: plot advice

Unread postby DEERSLAYER » Tue Apr 02, 2013 4:42 pm

Ag lime would be a lot cheaper, but pelletized is easy to work with. What kind of soil do you have? Is there still some good top soil left where they pulled the trees down the ridge?
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Re: plot advice

Unread postby matt1336 » Tue Apr 02, 2013 5:38 pm

If you have the room and the money- it's hard to beat a bean plot. In your area it would have to be big, several acres. I know it's not always feasible but those beans really do draw the deer in. We mixed brassicas in with the beans last year at our property in price county and that combo worked well. We were seeing up to 20 deer a sit. I'd put this plot in the middle of the property with other smaller plots set up between bedding and your beans. Hopefully you can shoot the bucks as they visit the small plots on their way to the beans. I know you would be drawing deer in from other properties.
This is a lot of work and money but it would be my ideal situation if I could set up plots on a new property.

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wibowhunt4me
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Re: plot advice

Unread postby wibowhunt4me » Thu Apr 04, 2013 2:39 pm

not sure exactly how much top soil is left right now. we still have plenty of snow up there on the ground. I have access to a dump truck and have found a place I can get topsoil for $10 a yard in our area if I need to haul some in. I also have access to a skid steer with a harley rake to work up my seed beds with.
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wibowhunt4me
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Re: plot advice

Unread postby wibowhunt4me » Thu Apr 04, 2013 2:45 pm

we thought of putting beans but our doe population would wipe out the plot before the bucks could ever find it LOL The largest plot I could put in would only be 1 1/2 acres. We are already thinking that we are gonna need to put an electric fence up around the plot to atleast let it become established.
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Re: plot advice

Unread postby DEERSLAYER » Thu Apr 04, 2013 4:13 pm

Topsoil would be very expensive. A yard doesn't go very far so I wouldn't go that route, but with the harley rake you should be able to spread out the remaining topsoil where the trees were drug down the hill and get that area into good shape. I think a harley rake for a skid steer will only go about 2" deep so depending on your topsoil depth and lime requirements you may want to consider renting a tiller attachment for the first time working the soil. That way you can do a good job of getting the soil pH adjusted, aerating the soil and breaking up any compaction. Then you can use the harley rake in the future. Just a thought. If you can't do that you can still have a nice plot though. Harley rakes make a nice seed bed. However, if you are lucky enough to have a good enough pH to start with then the right radishes can also break up compaction and aerate the soil for you. There are some other possibilities too. It just depends on your situation and personal preference.
You cannot invade mainland America. There would be a rifle behind every blade of grass.
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wibowhunt4me
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Re: plot advice

Unread postby wibowhunt4me » Fri Apr 05, 2013 12:39 pm

Deerslayer, I think my ph will not be very good considering it was a top of a ridge and all the trees that were there. The topsoil I plan to bring in will be mostly be used in areas where I feel there is a lack of topsoil. Another idea is I can get my hands on that black muck you can find in swampy areas. Some people I know use it in their gardens and swear by it. So I would spread the muck over my plot areas and let it dry out and then come back and hit it up with harley rake. I will have to check into a tiller attatchment for the skid steer or talk the boss into buying one. Already talked him into a seeder. I would really appreciate some of your ideas on what kind of blends I could use in the plots and if you know of any types of tall grasses I could use as cover.
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Re: plot advice

Unread postby DEERSLAYER » Fri Apr 05, 2013 4:25 pm

Muck is high in organic matter and nutrients which is great, but I would do a seperate soil test on it if you decide to go that route. The muck can be anywhere from extremely acid to needing no lime at all. It's hard to say what is the best way to go without knowing what kind of soil is in your plot locations (loam, sandy, clay, etc.), how deep your top soil is and what your soil test results say, etc. My best guess on recommendations would be Awesome Antlers for your destination plot, Crimson Trail for your smaller plots, Cave In Rock switch grass for cover in your travel corridor and Brassica Buffet for additional winter feed.
You cannot invade mainland America. There would be a rifle behind every blade of grass.
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Northwoods Seed
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Re: plot advice

Unread postby Northwoods Seed » Mon Apr 08, 2013 4:41 am

With out doing soil samples its a guessing game. But, buckwheat and rye will start the ball rolling, attract deer, and start fixing your soils. Most don't plant rye in the spring, but I have before and will this year in some areas that will be new food plots. As far as screening grass/travel corridors, you can plant switch grass, or norway spruce. But until then, I would use egyptian wheat. It grows 10 to 12 feet tall and makes great cover. I would avoid beans in your area. Lots of inputs as far as time/ money and after lasts years drought, lots of hunters were without beans. Stick with a good 20 to 25% perennial and 70 to 75% annual plantings in your plots. You will want your plots at their best in Oct-Nov-Dec.
Good luck
John

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Northwoods Seed
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Re: plot advice

Unread postby Northwoods Seed » Mon Apr 08, 2013 1:09 pm

Wibowhunt, after rereading your first post, I see you are getting the soil test done. (Sorry, I was sitting in the car while the wife was shopping and missed that part ;) ). The reason I would avoid beans right away is as you stated, a higher deer density would wipe them out. I have tried beans in a big woods/low ag setting and it was a struggle. We even tried a plot saver system with fair results. Although Matt1336 is spot on, a late season bean field is a dynamite draw, it's a matter of getting the beans to survive.
I am a firm believer in planting any clover plot in the fall (mixed in with cereal grains like rye/oats /wheat for a cover crop). The deer eat the cereal grain crops, and the clover gets a few months to develop a root system before winter. Next spring the clover will bounce back with vigor and you should have a great clover stand if the soil is right.
The travel areas up and down the ridges can be built with spruce trees or switch grass. The Egyptian Wheat (an annual) can fill the void while the trees and/or switch grass is growing to the proper height. If you go to our website and look up our plot screen picture, that is what Eyptian Wheat looks like. ( www.northwoodswhitetails.net )
As far as the fall plots go, if the soil tests come back bad, you can plant rye with a bit of buckwheat mixed in the first year. I have some terrible soil at one of the places I hunt, and use this mix a lot. If the soil is good, get brassicas in by late July, and some cereal grain plantings mid to late August should do the job.
John
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