It seems like everyone is planting food plots these days—and for good reason. Wildlife benefits from them and they make for great hunting.
But all food plots are not created equal. Any successful food plot should provide good hunting opportunities and be capable of producing great nutrition for deer. And with a little forethought, you can come close to creating the ideal scenario.
Stick to the basics, follow these five steps, and you’ll be on your way to growing the best deer food plot possible.
Step 1: Pick the Spot
The first step is to think about where the food plot will be located. Generally speaking, food plots should be centrally located on the property. You want deer to consider your food plot a safe zone. This means locating your plot where there is thick natural growth nearby to provide cover and escape options.
Then, look for areas of dense existing vegetation. If a spot can grow good weeds, chances are it can grow good food plots.
Finally, take a good hard look at the surrounding habitat. Is there a nice pine or two nearby to hide a tree stand in? Will the site work well with the prevailing winds during hunting season? Will deer move to the plot naturally or will they have to go out of their way? The answer to all of these questions should be yes.
Step 2: Prep the Area
Once you have your location all set, you need to prepare the area—beginning with a soil test. Proper soil pH (between 6.5 and 7.5) is one of the most important factors in assuring a successful food plot.
You will also need to remove existing vegetation from the area so your emerging forage plants will have the root space they need for optimum growth.
Step 3: Decide What to Plant
Once the area is prepped and the soil has been tested, it’s time to decide what you’re going to plant.
To make sure you choose the correct seed, take into account the physical characteristics of each site—soil type, climate, slope, etc. You’ll also need to decide the primary purpose of the site. Do you want the forage to attract and hold deer year-round? Or provide maximum production for part of the year, such as spring and summer for antler growth or fall and winter for attraction and energy?
Once you know the physical characteristics, soil pH, and the primary purpose of the site, you can pick the seed blend that is the best match for your situation.
Step 4: Add Supplemental Nutrients
Once your seed blend has arrived and you’re ready to plant, it’s time to nourish the area with Hyper-Grow Food Plot.
Along with Mother Nature’s blessing, H-G Food Plot is the most important ingredient that will turn a location into a prime-time hunting spot. H-G Food Plot is proven to produce healthier, more productive food plots.
Apply 0.7 lbs. of H-G Food Plot per 100 square feet or 200-300 lbs. per acre depending on the soil analysis. Then, simply work H-G Food Plot into the soil at a depth of four to six inches and you’re ready for the final step.
Grow it faster with H-G Food Plot, it’s time to hunt. Hyper-Grow products are proven to produce healthier, more productive plants. H-G Food Plot is a fertilizer amendment for plant growth.
Step 5: Sow the Seeds
Once you have gotten the area nourished and prepped (relatively smooth and satiny with few clogs and no living material), it is time to plant.
Be sure to plant your seeds at the correct depth based on seed size. Large seeds, such as oats, can be broadcast onto the seedbed, and then harrowed or dragged to cover. Small seeds, such as clover, should be left on top of the seedbed, so don’t cover them after you’ve put them out. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions to get the best results.
A good food plot is a thing of beauty and a boon to all types of wildlife. Food plots provide outstanding nutrition to whitetails, and are great places to view and hunt deer. Hunters everywhere have discovered this and if you haven’t given them a try, this just may be the year to take the plunge!