Category: Food Plots

Bucks: It’s happening now. – Episode #406

By GrowingDeer,

Watch GowingDeer episode #406.

New Video

Grant shares tricks for aging bucks in the field as we develop the 2017 hit list. Also, follow the team as they help landowners in Oklahoma and central Missouri improve the food plots and habitat on their properties. Gene Price from Trophy Rock stops by with a great new technique to improve food plots and make quality minerals available to a deer herd in any state.

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Instant Pot with chopped venison

 

New Weekly Blog:

Here is a new recipe from Tracy for cooking a venison ball roast!

 

 

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Daniel fills a Scent Crusher Ozone Tote with hunting gear.

Tip of the Week:

Scent control long before we get to the field! Clothes and gear need to be treated and stored to reduce scent. This is especially true when traveling.

 

 

 

 

Food Plots vs. Deer, Plus Frog Hunting – Episode #399

By GrowingDeer,

Food plot decisions and frog hunting in GrowingDeer episode #399.

New Video

See how Grant has and is still learning to use his food plot observations to make future management decisions. Managing both food and deer numbers is key! See effective tips on how to trap those pesky groundhogs. Plus, Grant shares how frog hunting is great practice for the upcoming deer season!

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Two young bucks scufflingShort Clip:

We can’t wait to see hard antlers this deer season! Here’s a tangled up mess of antlers to enjoy!

 

 

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Grant inspects the soil in a food plot

New Weekly Blog:

Everyone wants to hunt flat, row crop states like Kansas or Iowa. However, even if you have steep terrain in non row crop areas you can utilize these techniques to help produce quality whitetails!

 

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An arrow sticking out of a Morrell Target

Tip of the Week:

Shooting dots is a great way to get your bow dialed in before shooting at an outline or 3D target of a deer!

  Category: Eblast Archives, Food Plots
  Comments: Comments Off on Food Plots vs. Deer, Plus Frog Hunting – Episode #399

Deer Season Prep: Creating New Food Plots – Episode #396

By GrowingDeer,

Learn how we design a new food plot in GrowingDeer episode 396.

New Video

Grant and the interns design a new food plot! Watch to see the thoughts and steps to creating a food plot from scratch. It's a strategy designed to produce quality food and hunting in rough timber. Plus, we share tips on how to capture great trail camera pictures of fawns, does, and of course, BUCKS!

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Mid-June bucks in velvetShort Clip:

We love seeing ANTLERS! Enjoy our recent Reconyx videos of velvet bucks!

 

 

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Grant standing in a glade at The Proving Grounds

New Weekly Blog:

Quality cover and designated sanctuaries can result in a healthier deer herd and better hunting! Find out why cover is key for managing mature, huntable whitetails!

 

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Clay practices shooting a target at close range

Tip of the Week:

Blind bale shooting, or shooting a close target with your eyes closed, is a great way to slow down and focus on shooting form!

Great Management, Great Results! – Episode #395

By GrowingDeer,

Watch GrowingDeer episode 395 to learn more food plot tips and management practices.

New Video

Want to maximize your hunting property? This week we share even MORE tips for maximizing food plot acreage, soil moisture, native browse and cover! See how our management practices can help your property express its hunting potential!

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May trail camera pictures shows two bucks with antler growthShort Clip:

Antlers continue to grow and it won’t be long before we start creating our 2017 hit list! Check out several bucks that have already caught our eye!

 

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Soybean map compared to big bucks map

New Weekly Blog:

Age and quality forage are key for growing larger antlers! Find out how making quality forage available year round can help bucks express their antler potential and create better hunting!

 

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A utilization cage

Tip of the Week:

Utilization cages can be a great indicator of deer numbers compared to available food. If crops inside the cage are taller than outside, you may need to increase food plot acreage or harvest more deer this fall.

Maximize Your Food Plots! – Episode #393

By GrowingDeer,

Learn how to maximize your food plots in GrowingDeer episode 393.

New Video

See how we maximize one of our most valuable resources for deer hunting: food plot acreage! Plus, an update with observations and analysis of the progress of recently planted fields.

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Planting a soybean field with the Genesis no-till drill and Goliath crimperShort Clip:

See how the Goliath crimper and the Genesis drill work together to plant an entire field in this short time-lapse video clip!

 

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Hot Zone Fence

New Weekly Blog:

If you wish to save quality forage for early deer season or allow beans to mature to hunt over standing grain this winter, the preparation starts now! Click here to read this “step by step” guide on how to get started.

 

 

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Two bucks at a Trophy Rock

Tip of the Week:

Keep up with the antler development by placing your trail cameras out during summer! Trophy Rocks are a great way to get bucks in front of trail cameras!

The Benefits Of Roller Crimping

By GrowingDeer,

Earlier this week I was turkey hunting in Kansas. As my hunting partner and I drove around looking for toms on public land, I noticed that many farmers had begun preparing for planting season. There were one or two farmers that gambled on good weather and had already put seed in the ground several weeks earlier. Everyone else was just starting to spray or work their fields.

As we walked across some large ag fields in search of toms, I couldn’t help but notice how bare and dry the soil was. I picked up several clumps of dirt and with a slight squeeze watched as they fell apart. Not ideal soil. On top of that, I noticed erosion. Even in fields that had been terraced (designed and built to reduce erosion) and planted with the contour of the land, there were signs of water erosion.

During the hunt, I couldn’t help but compare my observations in Kansas to those at The Proving Grounds. There was one obvious difference, the use of cover crops.

Using a roller crimper

The roller crimper lays the winter rye down while crushing the stem, terminating the crop without the use of herbicide.

 

The soil at The Proving Grounds is never left uncovered. Last summer we mixed winter rye into Eagle Seed Broadside for a fall food plot blend. The winter rye has grown very well and helped hold moisture in the soil. We had several torrential rainfalls that eroded our roads but left our food plots unscarred. Our soil is still intact and healthy.

Like many farms we are preparing for planting, only we will be planting small summer food plots. We too will terminate the vegetation in our fields (in our case the winter rye) before we plant Eagle Seed soybeans. We terminate the rye to reduce the soybeans’ competition for nutrients, water, etc.

Unlike the farmers I watched spray weeds, we do not have many weeds in our plots. The winter rye has kept weeds from growing. One great thing about using the winter rye to protect our fields from erosion and weeds is that we are able to terminate the rye without the use of herbicide. We simply use a roller crimper.

A roller crimper, like a traditional roller, will lay the vegetation down. However, the addition of the crimper’s angled metal outcroppings will break the stem on the rye. By breaking the stem, the rye can no longer carry water or nutrients throughout the stalk and dies. This dead vegetation is now left on the soil and becomes a slow releasing fertilizer building organic matter and creating a layer of mulch that protects the soil from erosion, moisture loss, and weeds. The process of roller crimping replicates what large herds of buffalo did on the great prairie years ago as they trampled the native vegetation. This is exactly what created the soil that farmers in Kansas and other states now benefit from.

Though I was unsuccessful tagging a tom in Kansas, the trip was a gentle reminder of the differences in land management practices. As land managers, we can have great benefits (healthier soil) and cost reduction (reduced herbicide and fertilizer) by how we chose to manage our food plots this spring. Stay tuned this growing season as we keep you updated on our food plot management techniques!

Enjoying Creation,

Daniel Mallette

Strut Zone Prep – Episode #382

By GrowingDeer,

Watch GrowingDeer episode 382 to learn how we prepare food sources for deer and turkey hunting.

New Video

Watch the GrowingDeer Team frost seed clover and prepare a great food source for not only deer but turkey too! These clover plots will soon be great strutting areas for toms and purr-fect hunting locations. Find out how we plan to hunt these plots and others with our Montana Decoys!

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Montana Decoy turkey decoyShort Clip:

Watch Grant and CJ Davis from Montana Decoy share their turkey hunting tips, tricks, and techniques!

 

 

 

 

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Big 8 trail camera picture comparing 2014 and 2015

New Weekly Blog:

Tyler Gentry shares how multiple years of trail camera pictures helped him tag a buck last fall. Find out how you can use trail cameras to punch a tag!

 

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Using BoneView to check a trail camera in the field.

Tip of the Week:

When trying to pattern ol’ toms with trail cameras, checking pictures in the field can save a lot of time!

Soil Samples and Healthy Roots

By GrowingDeer,

Soil is the foundation that a food plot stands on, so it’s important to know how solid that foundation really is. A soil sample is a quick and easy tool that can help you maximize your food plot’s yield and save you time and money when it comes to fertilizing. Taking the sample is simple and only takes a few minutes to collect. All you need is a shovel or a soil probe, a bucket and some plastic bags.

Your local extension office can test the soil for you, or you can choose to use a private lab. We use Waters Agricultural Laboratories because of their quick service and we want our plots tested for maximum yield instead of the most economic yield, which is what most extension offices provide.

By taking a soil sample for every food plot, you can determine exactly how much fertilizer or lime is necessary for each plot to produce quality forage. This saves money and healthy plants are much more attractive (palatable) to deer than malnourished forage.

Jesus tells us in Matthew 13 that seeds cast on poor soil will quickly wither and die. This is true both spiritually and literally. If your plants, or your faith, are not rooted in quality soil, there is no way either can grow to their full potential. Make sure you’re taking care of both.

Enjoy Creation,

Jessica

Quality Food Plots

By GrowingDeer,
A half eaten turnip in a food plot.

Deer may respond differently to food plots from season to season.

Deer season is over and it’s time to pause and reflect on last year’s highs and lows. Whether you had a great season or things didn’t go exactly as planned, your management practices strongly influenced the outcome of your hunts. It’s important to remember that what works on one property may not work on another. Regardless of where you hunt, you should focus on getting deer the nutrients that they need to grow healthy and strong. You can create the opportunity for a memorable hunting season next fall by maintaining great food plots during the coming year.

We’ve talked to several people who experimented with a new food plot last year and were disappointed with the results. If they planted a quality forage variety Grant’s advice to them was to persevere and let the deer learn to eat at the plot. Depending on your region, deer may never have encountered what you planted. Given enough time, one curious deer will start to nibble on the forage and the rest will follow suit. Forage grown but not consumed isn’t wasted! It will decompose and increase the organic matter which is critical for quality soils!

Poor soil quality can make any forage taste bitter. Building a good layer of soil over time can do wonders for food plots. It’s important to pay attention to how deer responded to your plots last season, but if you tried something new and it didn’t work out, it may be worth the time to try that forage variety again.

Enjoy Creation,

Jessica

Fall Food Plot Fanatics – Episode #353

By GrowingDeer,

Learn about fall food plot techniques in GrowingDeer episode 353.

New Video

Food plots are one of the best tools we use to manage and hunt whitetails. Dry weather and rocky soils can throw a curve ball into your fall planting plans. Watch as we share tips and techniques that help us get the most out of each plot despite these challenges!

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Use trail cameras for scoutingShort Clip:

How do you capture your MRI during season? Check out this strategy for the upcoming season.

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Fertilize clover for a better spring food plot

New Weekly Blog: Fall Time Clover Management

How do you manage your clover plots during the fall? Check out the technique we use to get more forage and less weeds out of our clover plots!

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Apply bow wax before season opens

Tip of the Week:

You've been practicing with your bow all summer long, keep all strings and cables in great working order. Apply bow wax before season opens!