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Discussion in 'Hunting & Fishing' started by Deer Slayer, Jul 27, 2019.
Crossing fingers for rain!
The 4 bags are sold.
The oats, wheat and turnips in the food plot were looking great, this rain will help give em a boost for the post rut grazing!
I'm a little behind posting an update on my BFO/4x4 food plots but man am I happy with them! I had planted various plots in years past but had lackluster results for various reasons. I had not planted for the past 3 seasons but decided to give it one more shot after running across Deer Slayer's "Food Plot Basics" Thread on OK Shooters in August 2020 (I found it just in the nick of time). The results from this year's plots have far surpassed my expectations and anything else I've seen before.
I want to thank Deer Slayer for all of his help and consultation!!!
Location: Hughes County, OK
Planting Date: September 13th
Plots: 4 Acres Total. Two 1 acre plots of BFO only. One 2 acre plot consisting of 1-1/2 acres of BFO only and 1/2 acre of BFO plus 4x4.
Prep and Planting Steps:
1. Brush hog - mid-Aug
2. Round-up application - Aug 29 (next year I'll add some Remedy to hit some of the scrappy little oak sprigs)
3. Pelletized lime application - Sep 4 (used 4 ton ground drive spreader from local Feed & Seed store)
*I was WAY LATE on the lime application but was not thinking about food plots till August. By springtime 2021, my pH should be in good shape and ready for next year's plots.
4. Dry Fertilizer Application - Sep 12 (used same spreader as above)
5. Disk Plots about 4" in depth - Sep 13th
6. Spread BFO seeds - Sep 13th (used 3 pt conical spreader)
7. Ran cultipacker to smooth bed and cover seeds (I also ran the heel of my tractor bucket to "near ground level" to help smooth the berms/push dirt and improve seed coverage).
8. Spread 4x4 over 1/2 acre of cultipacked/smoothed bed - used hand spreader
9. Ran cultipacker over 1/2 acre 4x4 area to promote seed to soil contact
10. Applied Liquid Fertilizer (Deer Slayer's formulation) over each of the 3 Food Plots - Sep 15th
The ground was fairly moist when I planted, which promoted germination and some minimal early growth but I didn't get much measurable precip for about 5 weeks after planting. I was sweating it for a few weeks but when the rain came, the plots really came on!
These plots have been browsed HARD! The attached pics were taken about a week ago (11/24). I have some 12" BFO inside my exclusion cages but outside they are nearly browsed to the ground. Last week, I was in the bow stand at the edge of the 2 acre plot sitting right over the BFO/4x4 mix and was watching 17 deer (6-7 bucks and the balance of does/fawns) near dusk. For my area, this was unbelievable! The same evening, I had my #2 hit list buck (a mature, very HEAVY mainframe 10 with split brows) broadside at 25 yards at last shooting light checking out some does. Just before I let my x-bow bolt fly, I realized he had busted off his left main beam right after the G-2. I flipped the safety back on and enjoyed watching him browse the BFO/4x4 sprigs. I'm hoping I can catch him next year with a full set of hardware!
These plots were definitely a lot of work but definitely worth the effort. I'll be filling my DMAP doe quota easily this year with the help of these plots.
Thanks again Deer Slayer, you're the best!!!
Great to hear! Good stuff!
Thank you for your kind words TexAg.
Oats looking good. Deer are keeping em chowed down. I only took pics of one of the plots. I only attached the pic with the grow gage visible. It is about a 1/4 of one plot. The other plot has about twice the height in the grow cage. I limed the other plot in 2016 as the soil sample indicated the need. It was free bagged lime that was offered to me. About 3/4 each on 2 pallets that had been weathered until the bags were about to fall apart. We loaded with fork lift and tarped the load. I ended up tilling bag and all in the soil. I haven't pulled a soil sample lately, but it seems to grow better and the weed growth in the off season indicates a better pH.
Loving these food plots even after the miserable freeze! They are greening up this week with the warmer weather and the deer have been hitting them hard. Found these 7 sheds on our 3 acre BFO/4x4 plot. 6” bases on the biggest one.
Nice finds Tex!
It is time to fertilize your food plots as the plants are coming out of dormancy and need the boost. My plots are rapidly growing now that the photo period has lengthened and the ground temperature is rising. The deer are transitioning away from the feed and browsing the fresh green plots. My deer still come into the feed trough and if it is empty they stand and stare at the house waiting for me to come out with feed. They are spoiled. As soon as I run out of corn and protein then they will be on their own.