How big of a food plot is needed for soybeans?

By GrowingDeer,

  Filed under: , ,

← Grant's AnswersAsk Grant

What size field do you recommend if you don’t wish to have a fence around your soybeans?  I have been watching your videos and saw that some of your fields you listed at .9 or right above an acre did not have a fence around them.  Thanks for the help and I love the videos.



The size of the plot necessary to produce soybeans is dependent on the number of deer locally, the productivity of the plot, and alternate food sources such as the quality of native browse in the area.  I do a lot of prescribed fire and have fairly high quality native browse.  The quality of the native browse at The Proving Grounds peaks about the time when the forage soybeans at my place are germinating, there is plenty of food and deer don’t decimate the beans during the critical stage of their development.  I have 53 acres of appropriately fertilized food plots and about 500 acres of productive native browse/cover areas in the 1,500 acres of The Proving Grounds. However, the neighboring properties are mainly unmanaged hardwoods and fescue pasture.  There is no row crop ag within counties of me.  So I provide the quality forage for all the deer in the neighborhood.  The ratio of plots to total acreage to produce quality deer will be more or less at different areas depending on the production of each plot and land use practices on the neighboring properties.  If the deer density is high and there are many other quality food sources when the soybeans are germinating, then plots even an acre or more in size would need to be protected with an electric fence to allow them to mature enough to not be damaged by browse pressure.

Growing Deer together,