Cut Cedars for Cover?

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Just found this site off of Midwest Whitetail. The first episode I watched was your segment over deer and land management. I have a question about GDTV 15.  My timber is mainly made up of hardwoods and red cedar. My cedar thickets are just like the ones on the video. I’m using this part of my farm as a sanctuary, but I know it needs improvements. Do you think clearing some of the cedars to let more sun in will work better than hinge cutting areas?



Thanks for watching! Cutting and burning the cedar will usually let more sunlight reach the soil than hinge cutting, especially during the growing season. The bigger question is what will grow once the cedars are cut and burned.

I wait two years after cutting cedars to let the larger stems dry before burning to increase the amount consumed by fire. If the site was not historically tilled, there is probably a great variety of seed from native grasses and forbs that will germinate after the fire. However, if the cedars are growing where ag crops were produced, the resulting forage may or may not be desirable. If not, you’ll need to spray and replant to a desirable type of cover. Are there any desirable native forbs or grasses growing among the cedar currently? If so, removing the cedars and burning will most likely result in a great stand of native grasses and forbs. With a little scouting, you can probably determine what species will repopulate the area if the cedars are removed.

There was a GREAT response of desirable native vegetation that germinated at The Proving Grounds as the land was too steep and rocky to have been tilled historically.

Growing Deer together,