Buckwheat

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Video buckwheat for food plots

I usually broadcast plain old winter wheat into tilled ground, after September 1, cultipack, broadcast clover, then cultipack again. The clover always looks great the next year on those plots. The winter wheat is also a good draw the first fall. By the looks of my plots right now, that wheat seems to have also been the preferred forage of the deer over the last two winter months or so. I would try your buckwheat trick, but I am afraid my deer might starve the first winter after that.

I had 1.5 and 2.5 acre corn plots last year, and that is where I am putting in white clover this year. I will brush-hog them in the spring, when it gets dry enough (there was still a little corn left on the smaller plot last week but its nearly all eaten up now). The deer have been hitting the adjacent wheat plots really hard, the corn yield was exceptional on the smaller plot, and I trapped out most of the coons, so the corn has lasted way longer than normal. After I chop those old corn stalks in the spring, I will disk up those two plots, then control weeds with a drag after every rain.

I am going to try a slight variation this year, on those two plots. Half of each will be the same as last year (wheat and clover planted after September 1). The other half will be oats and clover (planted the same way I do the wheat later), but planted in mid-August. I am doing that for one reason – early antlerless gun season. Oats are preferred by deer significantly more than wheat in the fall. The early antlerless gun season seemed to be a huge success here in wmu 9f last September, so I assume they will do it again this year.

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I am only doing half of my plots that way, so I will have a good comparison of August planted vs September planted clover the next year, and the deer will still have that wheat for a winter food source. Maybe, I will try your buckwheat trick on the center part of the larger plot, where the soil is not as good. That was an old creek bed that the county re-routed about 50 years ago and nothing ever grows very well there. That way, I can compare the clover grown with wheat, oats, and “rolled” buckwheat, the following year.

As long as I can keep my cost of boneless (except for neck roasts) venison down around a buck a pound, after subtracting all input costs, I will be happy. The buckwheat should help with that because fuel is looking like it will be mighty expensive this year and that will save me lots of that by eliminating the need for tillage over the summer. I like to keep my venison as “organic” as possible by minimizing herbicide usage.

The only place I use gly, is directly on the corn rows, applied as I cultivate. I get about 3 years out of 2.5 gallons of gly, and that saves me big bucks in fertilizer and fuel, both of which will be astronomically priced this year, from what I hear.

Edited by wolc123

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Ethan Smith is a seasoned marine veteran, professional blogger, witty and edgy writer, and an avid hunter. He spent a great deal of his childhood years around the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest in Arizona. Watching active hunters practise their craft initiated him into the world of hunting and rubrics of outdoor life. He also honed his writing skills by sharing his outdoor experiences with fellow schoolmates through their high school’s magazine. Further along the way, the US Marine Corps got wind of his excellent combination of skills and sought to put them into good use by employing him as a combat correspondent. He now shares his income from this prestigious job with his wife and one kid. Read more >>