What should I plant on this field edge:


5 year old buck +
Ok, this overgrown section is my property, right next to an alfalfa field.

Here’s my debate:

1. Spray, fertilizer/lime, till?, then no-till beans and corn. I need some type of cover because this is wide open in eyesight of 6 houses. Or

2. Switch grass

The area is pretty small. About 40’ wide x 250’ deep. Has great morning and early afternoon sun.


What do you think? Any input?

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Is the alfalfa field yours?
A NWSG strip there would look awesome!

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3 rows of hybrid poplar.
I would do nwsg mixed with some thicket forming shrubs. I'm a big fan of hazelnuts, wild plum, and elderberry if they grow well in your area. These would provide different types of browse, potentially other sources of food throughout the year, and would create some variable edge of cover.
Native grasses all the way.
Plums and crabapples.
Are you trying to prevent people from seeing into your woods? Or are there houses in the woods and you are trying to prevent them from seeing the alfalfa field?

The best visual screen would be a conifer since you can't see through that any time of year. White spruce works well for me, but I know other people have had great luck with norway spruce or black hills spruce.

If a partial visual screen is good enough, I really like shrubs and small trees like wild plums, hazelnut, dogwood and crabapples. A shrub thicket is a great spot for wildlife in general.
Is the alfalfa field yours?

The alfalfa field is not mine. I have many doe groups that use this field every night of “early” bow season in Wisconsin. I don’t have any dense grass within 4 square miles except swamps, which are not mine.

The bucks I see are typically see or harvest are walking through my property and simply funneling through, may stop for a snack, then they are out.

As far as visuals, I do not need to block any view, unless I make this into food. Then I want the outer edge blocked, which, I feel would be a benefit anyway. I have mature white pines on this property and they typically bed inside my property edge just in the woods.

I’m seriously considering something like an Egyptian wheat, corn, beans, pumpkin deal.

Thanks yall, I have now determined that I want food and cover…. All in one.

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You may want to do edge feathering. It can provide food and cover. I would want to know what the alfalfa is being sprayed with before I plant anything right next to it.
Good call.

Food next to alfalfa will also yield only small benefit. Deer love alfalfa, everything else will come in second.
One pass with a disc harrow

Then leave it alone

I'd plant some apple trees between your pines and the neighbors alfalfa. Early dropping apples will be great September spots to catch a buck grabbing a bite before he hits the alfalfa next door. In 10 years, the apple trees will be large enough that the bucks will make scrapes under the branches.
This spot could be suspect to herbicide overspray, keep that in mind. My brother in law spot treats field edges to prevent weed migration into his croplands. Even if that is not happening, regular overpsray carryover will likely be happening.