This is the video transcript. To watch the video for this episode click here.
GRANT: (Whispering) Are you on it? (Inaudible)
DANIEL: Out doing a little treestand maintenance at The Proving Grounds today. But we’re also gonna be sharing some tips for creating a hidey hole food plot.
DANIEL: This hunting location has got a lot of great things going on. Of course, there’s a bedding area just to our south here. South-facing slope, great cover during the pre-rut and rut. Bucks are running this ridge looking for receptive does that are seeking cover.
DANIEL: We’ve got a north-facing slope just back over the ridge. So, we’ve got hardwood timber, bedding area coming together all along the top of this ridge. That hard edge is a great travel corridor for deer.
DANIEL: There’s also a very subtle saddle in the ridge right out in front of the stand. This little saddle is a great travel corridor for deer crossing the mountain.
DANIEL: There is a lot of terrain features that are pinching deer into this area just naturally. But we’re going to make it even better with a hidey hole food plot because adding that attractive food source, well, that’s just another bottleneck and that will bring deer within range.
DANIEL: We really like this area because we don’t have to do a lot of startup work. Some of the work has already been done for us.
DANIEL: Years ago this bedding area was covered with eastern red cedars. A chainsaw crew came in, felled the cedars. We’ve used prescribed fire to convert it back to native grasses and forbs. The habitat is doing great. There is a lot of sunlight reaching the ground. It’s very rich and a lot of diverse species.
DANIEL: Since sunlight is already reaching the ground, we don’t need to do anything to open up the canopy. If we were creating a hidey hole food plot in the timber, we maybe need to use a chainsaw, cut a few trees, open up the canopy enough to allow sunlight to hit the ground and allow our seed to germinate and create great forage.
DANIEL: Sunlight is key whether we’re creating native habitat or food plots.
DANIEL: Someone has already done the work for us. We’ve just got to take it to the next level. What we’re going to do is we’ve already mapped out with blue tape the border of our food plot. We’re just going to come in, backpack spray this area, terminate the native vegetation here. We’re going to come in with a hand broadcaster and plant seed when rain is coming.
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DANIEL: Well, just about a week ago, we came in and sprayed this little hidey hole food plot up on top of this ridge. Today, we’re going to do a little prescribed fire, if you will. We’re going to burn off the duff of this hidey hole food plot, prepare the seedbed. We’ve got rain in the forecast here in the next few days.
DANIEL: So, we’re going to burn off the duff and then we’ll come in while it’s raining and broadcast seed. The reason we want to burn this duff off is we want that seed to get good seed to soil contact.
DANIEL: We also want sunlight reaching the ground so those seeds can germinate and come on strong.
DANIEL: The guys came in. They weedeated and backpack blew a line all the way around. So we have a firebreak. We’re just going to burn the inside.
DANIEL: You can get the same type of result if you’re in the timber and you’ve got a bunch of leaves. You can backpack blow a line, burn off your area, prepare the seedbed and have great seed to soil contact.
DANIEL: The firebreak is prepared. Our vegetation is dry; it’s pretty warm today. So, we should have a pretty good burn. We’re gonna light her up and it shouldn’t be long before this is black.
DANIEL: All right. I need you guys ready with a, with a rake over here. Rake it – always rake it into the fire. Because that’s where, that’s where your fuel is. Rake it up, rake it in the fire.
DANIEL: Going nice and slow. I want to back it in here. We’ve got a little strong wind through here. So, going nice and slow; just letting it back in and get a black line on, on this side. And once we let it back out through there, we’ll kind of ring it around. It won’t go anywhere because there’s no fuel on this side. So, we’re just going slow, let it back in and it’s going well.
CLAY: Yeah. It’s burning a lot better than the other one did; that’s for sure.
DANIEL: Of course, I’ve got my fire gear on because Clay and I were on a prescribed fire earlier this afternoon. Got done with it; figured might as well come over and burn this little hidey hole. So, I just left my gear on and it’s perfect burning conditions.
DANIEL: Had a great little fire here burning off the duff in this hidey hole food plot and thrilled with the results.
DANIEL: We’ve got just all the duff taken off. We’re going to have great seed to soil contact when we come in and broadcast.
DANIEL: Rain is forecasted here in the next day or two. We’ll probably wait and broadcast right during the rain. That’s because we get great seed to soil contact and we have great moisture.
DANIEL: You know, fall food plots, we’re often broadcasting a very small seed. It doesn’t take much to get that seed covered. In fact, when it hits the ground, a raindrop that hits the ground, it will actually splash enough soil over that seed to cover it and it’s a perfect environment for that seed to germinate.
DANIEL: I’m really excited about this food plot. You know, it lays perfectly, like we talked about, with hard edges, travel corridor, little saddle in the ridge and one thing that I really like about this is we approach from the east.
DANIEL: We actually have a two-track lane right along the top of this ridge. We can drive the Yamaha down this ridge, approach from the east, and we’ll most likely hunt it on a south wind where that wind is blowing our scent back over the ridge. Deer in this bedding area won’t know we’re in the world. We can slip in and deer come up to us, stop at this hidey hole food plot and they’re in range of the Summits.
DANIEL: This is going to be a great stand during the pre-rut when bucks are cruising this ridge scent checking the bedding area. They’ll stop by and grab a bite. I suspect we’re gonna have a lot of great hunts from here this fall.
DANIEL: We’re gonna be broadcasting Eagle Seeds Fall Buffalo Blend. We’re also going to be adding a little clover in there as well just to make it a great attraction up here on this little hidey hole food plot.
DANIEL: We’ve measured out the clover. We’re mixing it in with the Fall Buffalo Blend. Of course, we burned off the duff which released nitrogen into the air.
DANIEL: So, we’re adding a legume. It’s going to fix nitrogen – pull nitrogen out of the air back into the soil – and it’s a great attraction.
DANIEL: We’re going to get this all mixed up, pour it in the broadcaster, and we’re going to head out and start spreading seed.
DANIEL: We’re going to start broadcasting. And what I’m going to do is I’m actually going to go this way across the plot and then I’ll spread this way. I’m only going to have my gate open just a little on my broadcaster and I may do this a couple of times both ways.
DANIEL: But I want to make sure I get an even distribution throughout the entire hidey hole food plot. I don’t want to run out of seed before I’m done.
DANIEL: So, I want to get a good distribution, great seeding rate; and that way this plot can express its full potential. I don’t have too many plants growing in one spot out-competing each other and producing low-quality forage.
DANIEL: All right. So, I finished going east and west all the way across the plot. I still have a lot of seed left, so I’m going to start going north and south. I’ll probably still have seed left and I’ll start going east and west again. So, just making sure I have great distribution of my seed.
DANIEL: So, better to go slow, get it done right, than to go too fast and use up too much seed. So, here we go.
DANIEL: I just finished broadcasting this hidey hole and rain is on the way. Within the next few days, this seed should germinate and we’re less than a month away to hunting season.
DANIEL: So, this is going to be a great hidey hole food plot, great hunting location later for this fall, especially during the pre-rut when bucks are cruising this ridge.
DANIEL: They’re going to come in, grab a bite to eat and be right within range of a pair of Summits.
DANIEL: We have a bunch of videos where we share lots of information about hidey hole food plots, hunting strategies and share some great hunts on those hunting locations.
DANIEL: If you want to see that information, check out our YouTube channel.
DANIEL: Whether you’re scouting for acorns, planting hidey hole food plots or maybe the season is already open where you hunt, I hope you get outside and enjoy Creation.
DANIEL: But more importantly, I hope you slow down, listen to what the Creator is saying to you and the purpose He has for your life.
DANIEL: Thanks for watching GrowingDeer.