Will the soil nutrients in a stand of soybeans be enough to produce a crop of brassicas, forage oats, and winter peas?

By Grant Woods,

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Dr. Woods,
I am writing you in hopes to get a little more info on over seeding a fall food plot blend into an existing stand of soybeans. I recently watch a clip where you and your team broadcasted a fall mix into standing beans on a rainy day. I wanted to do the same thing using a mixture of brassicas, forage oats, and winter peas. Prior to sowing the beans I will take soil tests and react accordingly. So my question is in theory will the ph and nutrients in the soil be sufficient for the fall mix after the beans have been growing all summer? In addition by doing this will the rainfall be enough to insure proper seed to soil contact? Lastly, what are your thought on using milorganite in the freshly planted beans to deter deer browse on the new shoots of beans?
As a side note I wanted to thank you for your great videos you put out. They are very informative and a breath of fresh air in regards to the content of hunting media we see today. You are a great embassador for hunters and and owners alike.

Best regards,

Brian Laux



Thanks for the kind words!

Unless there is a major flooding, etc., event soil nutrients (except nitrogen) change relatively slowly except for those removed by the crop.

The results of the soil test conducted before planting the beans will show if there are enough nutrients for a crop of beans and a followup cover crop.  The soybeans, if they grow well and are allowed to mature will add approximately 50 pounds of nitrogen per acre.  The amount of phosphorous and potassium available will be known before the beans are planted.

Therefore, if you add the appropriate nutrients there should be ample nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium to produce a the cool season blend you mentioned.

Winter peas are a relatively large sized seed.  It’s tougher for larger seeds to make good contact with the soil when they are broadcast compared to smaller sized seeds like brassicas.  Depending on the amount of forage when the seeds are broadcasted and condition of the soil the winter peas may have a low germination rate.  When I plant larger sized seeds into stand beans, I often use a no-till drill. The drills I use damage about half the beans and results in a great mix of soybean seeds and winter greens!  I really like this technique.

Dr. Karl Miller at the University of Georgia did some research with milorganite years ago and reported some level of success at reducing deer from browsing on young soybeans.  Since then other researchers have found conflicting results. The primary variables are the number of deer in the area compared the amount of quality forage and if deer have been exposed to milorganite before. Deer rapidly become conditioned to ignore deterrents that don’t physically threaten them.   The best forage protection system I’ve tried is the Non-Typical solar powered electric fence.

Enjoy creation,


December 20, 2015