A One Long weekend fall food plot.......


5 year old buck +
This is the jist of my food plotting at camp. Lets say you got a sprayer, harrow of choice, spreader, cultipacker, and mower. No fancy seed drills and spot is too rough too till down past 3 or 4 inches, mostly tree roots and large rocks down there. You can spray and spread at the same time if you'd like. You can fertilize while you use implements too. Weather is in your favor for spraying and rains coming after the weekend for the seed. Hardiness zone is 3a, soil is sandy with plenty of forest organic matter in it, pH is low to mid 6, well drained, no high nutrient content, but its getting better over time. 1st frost is mid september. Usually plant 1st or 2nd week of august.

Area is wooded, partial sunlight, but definitely enough to make oats, rye, and clover grow and produce seed. I do have 2 or 3 full sun plots. Turnips, winter peas, vetch, and chicory have been planted successfully. However, turnips and brassicas get destroyed by ruffed grouse. It's funny to see males fight over the food plot in the fall. See 15-20 of them in your trail most of the afternoon. In my case, it's a 25-50ft wide snowmobile trail that some folks drive ATV's in. Not too much traffic and I leave the center 6ft untilled. Would like to plant orchardgrass in the middle someday possibly. However, brassica's get killed by the few tires that wander, but 80% of the plot can still have them in tact. Clover and the wheat survive, oats sometimes do. Par for the course here, but seeing 10 and 12 pointers where these atv's have cruised by is par too....... I am to plant something tall enoguh to discourage atv's from wandering in there and staying on the path.

Usually a 4 day weekend in August. However, I go spray 2 weeks ahead of time. I was hoping to try spray on friday and plant on Sunday approach. Saturday is fishin' n chootin'.

Assume pH is ok, its an established area and not a fresh plot. Mix of oats, clover, and a fair share of weeds in there. It's maybe 12-16" tall. It been mowed early and mid summer. I am new to selective herbicides, and will likely use them in the existing clover plots from last year. Sometimes I redo a clover plot in the spring with dutch, ladino, and medium red clover and oats as a nurse crop. Every plot there gets frost seeded with clover. Sedge grass and golden rod are the common enemies.....

I want to try this method and see how it works. I have done the spray n clover method ok. Can it be done with grains..... I can experiment at my house with this method too. I have 8 acres behind my house I can do anything I want to.

Would not cry too hard if it fails. I have other spots I hunt at the lease, and I hunt a 400 acre corn n bean field. closer to home.

ON the trail, I am tempted to basically make pasture. Some sort of grass legume mix. The club house lawn and parking lot get clover, perennial ryegrass, and plantain. Seems to survive the truck, atv, and ethanol spillage around the campfire.....
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Sound like a good plan! My only comment is that I don't know what you can plant that will keep ATVs out. As kids we used to run them through goldenrod making our trails every year.
Sound like a good plan! My only comment is that I don't know what you can plant that will keep ATVs out. As kids we used to run them through goldenrod making our trails every year.
I have my food plot in what I call the wild east. People get hurt n killed up there weekly on ATV's and snowmobiles. About 15 miles away is legal ATV trails. People who go by are in nearby hunting clubs are mature people that have survived their young n dumb days. This is logged areas, could be a stump, a deep rut, or felled tree. If it's tall enough, few will venture off the beaten path in the middle. They're mostly driving the path to visit the reservoir / h20 wateringhole. We are limited in what we can do at these clubs, but mowing and maintaining a snowmobile trail is completely ok with the town's trail system, and the environmental folks.

I do loose some crop, but not alot. Buckwheat wouldn't be a good fit. But, clover and small grains do fine, peas work. Havent tried daikon raddish yet. However, the ruffed grouse refuse to let a turnip live up there when fall seeded. I have had successful planting of turnips in log landing plots that are well nursed and spring planted. However, spring turnips arent the best way to do those guys.