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Food Plots????

Old 02-24-2004, 06:01 PM
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Default Food Plots????

Hey im from Ohio, I have a field thats less then a half an acre that has a few trees in the field but is surrounded by woods and bedding areas, i have been feedin in the area and i want to plant a food plot in the field. I have a food one i kinda like which is Antler Kings hunny hole blind i was wondering if anyone had any suggestions.tips or comments about this blend. Thank's Anyone that can help

Thanks,
Ohio Hunter 45
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Old 02-24-2004, 06:26 PM
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Nontypical Buck
 
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Default RE: Food Plots????

Hi and Welcome,

Most of the "honey hole" or "secret spot" mixes are annuals - and are for fall planting a small spot to lure deer to a specific spot during hunting season. Usually most or all of the blend will not come back again next season. I think they are probably pretty tasty, and may help attract deer, especially if its situated in a secluded area, that already offers a good food source (like apples, young browse, or acorns)

I will say do not expect big things however. Remember - a good rule of thumb in deer management is that 1 acre of high-protein forage - will support 3 deer for one full year. It simply isn't realistic to expect bigger antlers, increased deer populations, heavier & healthier deer with a few small plots.

Good luck and check into other options for food plots. There is a lot to learn - and some good advice on the internet to get you started on the right track.
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Old 03-02-2004, 11:22 AM
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Default RE: Food Plots????

With FH... Do something. We would suggest a quality forage or a fall, winter, early spring blend for the huting season.
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Old 03-02-2004, 06:38 PM
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Default RE: Food Plots????

Ohiohunter,

You don't have to spend a lot of money on a fancy name brand food plot mix. Just go to you local farm/seed store and get some Ladino clover. You will only need about 3 lbs to do the 1/2 acre. This will provide a food source from green up until freeze, and should last 3+ years if maintained. The main thing is to take a soil sample to your local county extension office and have them test it for a small fee. From there, they will give you recommendations on how much fertilizer and lime you need to get optimum benefit from your planting. Are you planning on doing a traditional till or no-till? Either can work well if done properly.
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Old 03-02-2004, 08:13 PM
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Default RE: Food Plots????

ditto Darton. Clover is excellent feed mix of red (1#/ac.) and ladino (2#/ac.) would works well. maybe more on a straight seeding. i am used to mixed seeding with a lttle grass thrown in. check with your local extension agents for more recommendations
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Old 03-03-2004, 09:05 AM
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Default RE: Food Plots????

I will disagree on the "just go to the co-op" thing. Believe me there is a large difference in deer/wildlife nutrition products. When planting clover it is quite adviseable the a blend of clovers be used. Some clovers mature and have a higher protein level and sweetness to them than others.
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Old 03-03-2004, 02:47 PM
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Default RE: Food Plots????

We're only talking about a 1/2 acre here, so I really dont think protein levels and sweetness will matter a whole lot. All he can hope to accomplish is to draw in some deer for increased sightings, and possibly higher harvest success. 1/2 acre plot is not going to result in bigger antlers and body weights. You are right that there is a BIG difference in deer/wildlife nutrition products, and most of it is PRICE. The average landowner/hunter would do just as well to stick with the basic clover, alfalfa, wheat, etc that is available to the local farmers.

The fact is that in most areas (there are some exections), food is not a limiting factor for whitetail deer - they have plenty to eat. Food plots should be seen for what they are - a means to draw deer to an area to increase the chance of harvest (not that there is anything wrong with that), not as a means to growing trophy deer. Let a deer grow to 4 1/2 in most any place and he will be worthy of the wall.
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Old 03-03-2004, 05:16 PM
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Default RE: Food Plots????

Amen, Darton02.
I grow plots in timber openings, field edges, etc. I see deer almost every day. Where? In the grazed over horse pasture. but they do work the plots. Today I was weedeating the grass in my clover as 2 does grazed at the other end of the field. (They know season is over.) Our group culled out about a dozen does plus 5 bucks. The does all looked pregnant and the bucks weren't skinny. They certainly arn't starving. The only Honeysuckle in my timber is 10 feet up. But the deer here in Northern are not big. Bucks 150lb. ave. does about 120, maybe. I don't live in the Delta land.

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Old 03-03-2004, 07:31 PM
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Default RE: Food Plots????

Lunchbucket I can appreciate your statement, and agree with you on most of your point. I do however - hate the "secret spot" and "honey-hole" type mixes. The fine print expresses the realistic expectations of the product, but outwardly they tempt people to waste their money on a few "magic" seeds.

For example, the bag of "secret spot" a freind showed me - had a "special ingredient" to help increase Ph levels and encourage establishment. For god sakes the bag had maybe 1-1/2 lbs of mixed seed (rye, rape, clovers, chickory, and grasses), and a little extrafine lime. What a joke!!!

I think the bag was only like $10.00, he was going to plant it near his treestand, and hopefully pull the deer in off his neighbor's 30 acre alfalfa field. What was I to say? ......... I wished him luck.......
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Old 03-04-2004, 09:06 AM
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Default RE: Food Plots????

FH, I am with you on much of the new hush-hush blends that have came on the market recently. You have to know what you are looking at on the bag. I think that when Darton has some more time on this and some of the other boards he will see that there is a difference other than price on some of the more targeted blends. What we see with some of the newer blends is an attempt to make up lost ground in the industry, that and maybe some desperation... You and some of the others know our situation with the seed industry...
I just love those "special ingredients", like lime, that are the Holy Grail to the manufacturers... Interesting how integrity falls off, almost expotentially, as the $$$ becomes the new motivater.
When we see statements like the "just go to the co-op" and a lumping of all seeds and seed blends together we, and yourself, know that we are dealing with a novice who may have had bad luck or did not properly prepare the soil for planting.
There is no magic in plnting and no magic seeds... Just a lot of elbow grease and luck... Not to mention soil samples. Education will help cut down on error but if it don't rain it don't matter, the seed ain't growing...
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