New food plot for 2017-18

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treefarmer
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New food plot for 2017-18

Post by treefarmer » Sun Aug 27, 2017 10:14 pm

I've always enjoyed the comments, questions and suggestions that have come from posting the development of several different food lots over the last few years here on the FOHAF forum. I really miss the cyber friendship that resulted from participating on this forum.
I recently developed a plan for a new food plot and actually began working on it yesterday. I've been reading about planting between pine rows. Having thinned the pines that are adjacent to my old "go to food plot" a few years back, there is a harvested row, creating a 300 foot by 16 foot place to plant a plot. This calculates to be just over a tenth of an acre. The pine rows are a lot longer but I can only see the west 300 feet from the old shooting house which is a hundred yards north.
In past years we had used this opening as a fire lane when we burned that particular stand of pines. So why not turn it into a long lean food plot? I've read that Durana Clover will tolerate more shade than any other clover so this east-west plot might work out.
I bush-hogged the weeds and then disked the area about 4 times and it looks very promising. I don't have access to a culti-packer so I'll have to devise some way to tighten the soil so the clover will not be planted too deep. Covering a food plot with a disk always seems to limit the germination of clover, it only needs to be about 1/4 inch deep.
If we get much rain I'll be out of business for a while, but planting any time during September should establish a stand. One thing that helps with this idea is the old food plot still has quite a bit of Ladino clover in it from past years. This is the patch where we planted the corn a few years ago. It has been in soybeans, Clover, Iron and Clay peas, Abruzzi Rye, Wheat and corn over the years. The shooting house is usually easy to reach but being on the north side, scent is sometimes an issue. Also the automatic corn feeder is set another 4 or 5 pine rows south of the plot.
Starting to feel my age, so this smaller plot will be a little easier to establish and tend. If I can, I'll try to do a weekly update as we did in the past.
If I can still figure out how to post pictures we'll give it a whirl. Without pictures this will be pretty dull stuff.
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Re: New food plot for 2017-18

Post by Triple Creek Reaper » Mon Aug 28, 2017 12:25 pm

I like the idea of having this thin, long plot right of the main plot you have hunted over for years. Gives the bucks a place to cruise the edge scent checking the larger plot for the does. I remember you built a ground blind for the grandsons, perhaps you can push that blind into the far end of that row for keeping an eye over the entire thing.
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treefarmer
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Re: New food plot for 2017-18

Post by treefarmer » Mon Aug 28, 2017 1:24 pm

That's a pretty good idea, Triple Creek Reaper! I'll study on that a bit, thanks for the thought!
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Re: New food plot for 2017-18

Post by treefarmer » Mon Aug 28, 2017 8:23 pm

Spoke to a representative of Pennington Seed today, they actually returned the call! Was a little bit disappointed in his advice. He said the ideal planting time for our area is Oct. 15-Nov.15, so there will be little chance of forage being available during the 2017-18 season. He did say if we experienced some actual early ground cooling weather, the planting date could be moved forward a few weeks. The new plants are apparently very heat sensitive in the early stages. The Durana Clover puts more effort in establishing it's root system before it does a lot above the ground. I guess I'll fluff up some of the old plot that doesn't have the Ladino clover showing up and plant something that will be working as an attractant for Thanksgiving Day.
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Re: New food plot for 2017-18

Post by jtcmedic » Tue Aug 29, 2017 8:39 pm

I look forward to your food plot post treefarmer and the thanksgiving story. I hope it works out
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Re: New food plot for 2017-18

Post by treefarmer » Sat Sep 02, 2017 10:28 am

We've had a steady group of visitors to the feeder that is adjacent to the new projected clover plot. Wiley E. showed up and then on a rainy evening some bucks that I had not seen on camera before. The weekly check of the cameras is almost as exciting as sittin' in a stand!
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Re: New food plot for 2017-18

Post by jtcmedic » Sun Sep 03, 2017 11:54 am

Nice little bachelor group
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Re: New food plot for 2017-18

Post by treefarmer » Thu Sep 07, 2017 2:36 pm

Here is the same bunch, showin' up during daylight hours. We also had some visitors in the front yard this mornin' during coffee time, a hen and 5 young turkeys. We've been seein' these birds for a month or so. The first bunch to raise a brood around here in a long time!
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Re: New food plot for 2017-18

Post by 9dawgs » Tue Sep 26, 2017 2:15 pm

Man, that's looking good as usual TreeFarmer. Nice to see someone with a nice crop of critters growing. Should be a great season.
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treefarmer
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Re: New food plot for 2017-18

Post by treefarmer » Sat Oct 21, 2017 5:55 pm

It has been about 6 weeks since I checked in with the new food plot progress.
Our weather has finally showed some fall temperatures about the time the Pennington man said to plant the Durana Clover, October 15th. We spread 150 pounds of 10-10-10 and 200 pounds of Pelletized lime on the 1/10th acre strip between the pine rows. Then the fertilizer and lime were cut in with the disk. Not having easy access to a cultipacker, I choose to firm up the ground with the tractor tires. The tires on that tractor make an 18" wide print. So each round would effectively "cultipack" 3 feet of the 16' wide plot. So with 5 or 6 rounds I packed the soil in preparation for the clover seed. The reason for firming the soil 1st is that clover will not do well if covered too deep with a disk in soft soil, clover only needs about a 1/4 inch cover to germinate. Some food plot seed will do well if covered over with a disk but not clover.
After the soil was firmed up I used a little hand held spreader to scatter the tiny seeds. There are a little over 3/4 of a million seeds in a pound (776,000+/-). They will leak out of a lot of spreaders!
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I walked down the center of the plot, then returned along the south side and the last lap was along the north side, spreading the clover seed, lots of walkin' for an old man!
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I Then covered the seed by dragging an old set of bed springs up and down the plot, now all we need is a little rain.
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We had company at the feed about an hour after we finished.
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This clover will probably not do anything for the 2017-18 season. It's an experiment to see how it does in the planted pines.
In the old 2 acre plot north of the new undertaking, I planted a curved, 100 yard X 25' strip of oats back in September. The deer are working it over according to the camera and noticing the clipped leaves.
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Re: New food plot for 2017-18

Post by treefarmer » Sat Oct 21, 2017 6:01 pm

Here's the strip of oats, notice where the tractor has mashed down the outs when we fertilized them on Thursday. There is some clover under the weeds that is also being grazed, not much but the deer know it's there. It's from several seasons back, last year this plot was planted with wheat.
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Re: New food plot for 2017-18

Post by jtcmedic » Sun Oct 22, 2017 6:10 am

Looks like the grandsons will have some nice hunting this thanksgiving.
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Re: New food plot for 2017-18

Post by treefarmer » Mon Oct 23, 2017 1:55 pm

jtcmedic, I might just move their shooting house to overlook this oat patch and the feeder.
We got 7/10" of rain on the newly planted Durana clover plot!
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Re: New food plot for 2017-18

Post by treefarmer » Sat Nov 11, 2017 4:58 pm

Update on the New food plot:
The Durana clover is showing up, the oats are doing well. As you can see from the picture, this clover wont do any thing till spring and summer of 2018. The deer are eatin' oats and still visiting the feeder along with all the 'coons in the county.
Lots of coyote pictures on another camera in the deep woods and we are hearin' them in the evenings. Sounds like a bunch of Beagles yappin' after a rabbit, then that howl ever now and then.
Thanksgiving Day is the opening day for rifle, I'm going to try to be there "with bells on", Lord willing! Might get a chance at one of these little bucks the 1st day or two. Rut is still weeks away, so it'll be feeding activity that allows one to show up.
Grandsons are coming for Thanksgiving, we'll see how the hunting goes.
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Re: New food plot for 2017-18

Post by jtcmedic » Sat Nov 11, 2017 7:30 pm

Looks great , gonna be a great thanksgiving for all and glad you will be up and at it , the bees will like that clover also.
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