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Good food source?

4871 Views 10 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  dagulskie
My father and his brothers tried to start a couple of food plots in fields we have. For some reason they could never get it to work and now that they have passed my cousins and I want to try again but are unsure which crop or food source would be good and will take. We are in the mountains but the fields get plenty of sun light also I thought I read about a place you could send a soil sample and they tell you whats bests. Any thoughts?
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there are places to send soil samples to. i take mine to the county building in town where my lease is at. costs like $5.00 and get results back in a couple of days. Sending in a sample is the first thing to do. When you take your sample, don't take it from one spot on that food plot, take small amounts from different parts of that food plot. i would also take samples from each area that you want to plant. especially if you have alot of Pine trees around.
the biologist i deal with, if you tell him what you want to plant, when they test your samples, he will tell me how much fertilizer and lime is needed.
RE: Yeah, ok, tha

RE: Yeah, ok, that's one thing but why don't we talk about the possibility of a lahar from Rainier?USGS has most rteencly given us a 1 in 7 chance of a substantial' event like the one that send sand flowing all the way up to the Port of Seattle only 1200 years ago happening in the average person's lifetime. An event such as the Osceola mudflow (6000 years ago) would obliterate Tacoma, Puyallup, and most of Renton, and probably even damage downtown Seattle.Those are terrible odds if everything you own is at stake, and your lives as well. I won't even consider property built on the Osceola mudflow. I mean do you really want to die in your bed as a wall of mud rushes towards you at 60 km/h? I know I don't.Rainier doesn't even have to erupt for this to happen. It just has to shrug it's shoulders Rate this comment: 0 0
just remember to mark each sample as to where the sample was on your plot. A blend sample may actually hurt some of your plot. A large plot may have different soils and thus need slightly different fertilzer numbers.
Thanks for the great advice. The only real concern I have is planting something that doesn't require a lot of maintenance because I can get to my property but twice a month
there are annuals and perennials. once the plot is up most don't need much maintenance. alfalfa and clover should be cut a couple times a year but thats about the worst of it. everything else is more yearly maintenance.
Good Plot Food

Can't agree more about the soil testing. Best resource is usually agricultural service near you, or alternatively whitetail institute will send you out a bag with instructions and you mail it back. Cheaper to do local and agricultural consultants will usually help you out. Whitetail institute can also help you with selection once you have soil test. They will recommend best seed mix for your area. Seed isn't cheap but advice is qualified.

The frustrating part is that for the best soil test they want to know what you are planting first so they can recommend soil treatments that are best suited to the plants needs. When I first start a new site, I plan what I am going to plant after I see the soil test results. Because depending on my results, the amount of cash I have, what kind of ammendments are needed to get the soil in the right pH range I may decide this is not the "low cost, or low maintenance" I was looking for and may move to another site or give up the idea entirely (which I have done on a few places due to economic and management issues).

I agree that the two most overlooked areas of successful food plotting are weed control and soil testing.

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Yes to all the above. I use the local Co-op, I tell them what I am planting then they sample the soil and recomend what it needs, which is usually lots of lime and then the fertilizer mix. The good thing about the Co-op is they will deliver and spead the lime and the fertilizer. They do it better and cheaper in bulk than I could just buying it. The fertilizer they blend themselves so the mix is just right.

For fall food plots the cheapest and easiest for me is a blend of Winter wheat, clovers wiith a little rape. The deer love it.
my winter plots consist of oats, rye, buckwheat and some rape. oats and rye will grow anywhere. i will plant small spots in the middle of pine rows, with no soil prep. just rake the needles, scratch the surface , throw out seed and drive my 4-wheeler over it. about 75% will come up. not bad for not much prep work.

When it comes to food plotting there are a few things that will apply to most situations. First, better nutrition, even on a small scale, will promote a healthier herd. In areas that lack adequate food, such an effort can make a big difference.

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