Controlling Grass in Food Plots

By Grant Woods,

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Dr. Woods,

My friend and I have been practicing QDM for 8 years now on a 150 acre tract of land in upstate New York that he owns.  We have a total of about 450 acres with exclusive rights.  We have approximately 12 acres in food plots consisting of summer and fall plantings.  We have very rocky soil and the last 3 years have been combating a serious grass problem in all our plots.  We recently applied arrow brand herbicide and had great results with it.  How do we avoid future problems with grass competition?  Do we use a no till drill and if so, which one would you recommend?

Thank you for your time,



The best method to control grass competition (or any weed) depends on the species of crop with which the grass is competing.  For example, controlling grass in clover is totally different than controlling grass in wheat or corn.  Mowing rarely controls grass.  Using a herbicide that will kill the target species of grass while not harming the desired crop is a very good method for controlling grass in an existing crop.  Using herbicide to kill all existing vegetation and then planting using a no-till drill is a good method to reduce the amount of grass competition.  No-till drills eliminate the need to disk or turn the soil which reduces the amount of weed seeds that are brought to the surface of the soil.  Weed seeds that are several inches deep in the soil usually won’t germinate.  However, they can remain dormant in the soil for decades.  Using a no-till drill is a great practice, but it is almost always necessary to use herbicides to control grass because the few seeds that are within an inch of the soils’ surface will usually germinate and then produce more seed unless controlled by herbicide.

Growing Deer together,