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I am thinking about doing a very small food plot for next year. By very small i mean a 30yd X 30yd Square. Archery season opens

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  • I am thinking about doing a very small food plot for next year. By very small i mean a 30yd X 30yd Square. Archery season opens

    I am thinking about doing a very small food plot for next year. By very small i mean a 30yd X 30yd Square. Archery season opens in the first week of october so i need something that will reach maturity quickly so i can plant as close to first day as possible so the deer dont decimate it before i can hunt them. What should i plant and what tips and tricks should i know?

  • #2
    Smitty18---You're in PA, right? For the conditions you outlined, I'd go ahead and put out 300 lb. of lime as soon as possible and work it into the soil so it will be ready to react with fertilizer as soon a possible when you plant. I'd plant a half a bushel of oats or winter wheat and fertilize with 150 lbs of 15/15/15. That should make it really jump up and grow quickly and will even keep up with fairly heavy grazing for a while. You might even mix oats and wheat. Clover and brassica will be too slow growing, but you could mix in a couple of pounds---just don't cover those seed too deeply. Mainly, don't skimp on the fertilizer. Make sure the plot has adequate sunlight, too. Best of luck.
    Pray for rain.

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    • #3
      Oh yes, stay away from rye grass. It grows anywhere and quickly, but deer don't care for it and it will be a nuisance in your plot from then on. Abruzzi rye is a different story and might be worthy of inclusion, but oats and winter wheat are simple and tough.

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      • #4
        Around here people go with oats and winter wheat.

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        • #5
          Thank you piney, i am trying to get a hold of the county extension office to get a soil test but they have not replied to my email yet. And yes, I am in North West PA.

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          • #6
            Smitty, I know in SW PA I'm close to a Penn-State campus and they will do a soil test and let you know just what you need for lime and what kind and how much fertilizer to use for about $20.00, a friend of mine went to Southern States and they mixed up seed and fertilizer for us. If you have a campus close to you check them out, it helped us out.

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            • #7
              Plant winter rye as in the grain from your local agronomy center, not rye grass. It is inexpensive, grows fast. If you plant it mid to late August it will have tender shoots in 3 weeks that deer will focus in on. Rye puts nitrogen back in the soil so you rarely need to do any fertilizing. It grows under the snow staying green all winter, deer will paw it up during winter until the snow is too deep for their hooves. It will be the first thing green come spring providing important nutrition as the deer's digestive system converts back from woody browse.
              As the rye matures it provides nesting cover for game birds along with seeds. Then come August plow it under scatter new seed and start the cycle again.
              later,
              charlie

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              • #8
                We planted some clover in may and it failed due too much weeds. Then we planted some in early september ang it isnt very mature so I recommend planting some imperial clover in august.

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                • #9
                  Thanks for all the advice, i am going to look into planting Winter Rye.

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                  • #10
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