This is the video transcript. To watch the video for this episode click here.
>>GRANT: Fortunately, we’re on the backside of the big polar vortex, except through most of the Midwest. And here at The Proving Grounds it left about eight inches of fairly dry snow, we are a day or two past any snow now, and the sun is out today. It’s still cold, but the sun’s out, and it’s starting to melt down, and these are perfect conditions for snow seeding.
>>GRANT: We’re at a plot that’s got quite a few trees in it. We can get a tractor and a drill in here, but it sure is painful. We call this area Clover Mountain because when I first cleared it out, I planted clover in here. And that’s turned out to be a really good attraction and an early spring food source for this plot.
>>GRANT: Clover plots, as you know, tend to thin out a little bit over time. And I’ve learned that I strongly prefer planting really strong annual clovers about this time of year, getting that big flush and providing a lot of nutrition and attraction through spring green-up when those does are having fawns and starting to nurse fawns and, just as importantly, to attract those toms in during turkey season.
>>GRANT: Turkeys, of course, like eating clover. We’ve showed a lot of crops cut open that had clover leaves in there. But a lush clover stand will attract a lot of bugs, and turkeys certainly like insects. So, you create kind of an insect plot here, and those turkeys are gonna come running because that’s really rich in protein during the breeding season.
>>GRANT: So, my objective today is do some snow seeding, and I just want to thicken up a stand of clover that I know is here, but it’s underneath the snow. And then this fall I’ll come on top of that clover – you know I say fall/late summer, August/September, and boy that clover is pretty beat down. It’s been dry, and it’s an annual clover. Some of it may have went to seed, and I’ll overseed it with the Fall Release blend that will give me all my small grains and everything else to make this a great hunting spot.
>>GRANT: Gotta be realistic. I’m in the middle of the timber – pretty small spot. This is not a nutrition feeding spot. Now, of course, deer and turkey will get some good nutrition out of here, but it’s not gonna, you know, feed deer on 600 acres. So, I’m gonna make this a really good early spring nutrition. Clover is growing so fast that time of year, deer can rarely consume all of it, even in a relatively small spot, and a great attraction for turkey season. And then again, a great attraction during the deer season.
>>GRANT: These conditions are ideal for what I call snow seeding, which precedes frost seeding usually.
>>GRANT: If you’ve got a snow like we do, and it’s melted down a day or two and you’re not looking at a big thaw all at once where it’s gonna run water off the hill, you just spread small, hard seeds like clover seed in the snow.
>>GRANT: It’s great, because you can tell exactly where you’ve walked, and then as the snow melts a little bit more each day, it’s taking that seed on down. The ground is freezing and thawing, cracking open, and then closing shut, and that serves to bury those small hard seeds about an eighth of an inch deep.
>>GRANT: Those small, hard seeds aren’t gonna germinate in this cold condition. It’s almost like cold storage, but when it warms up, of course when it warms up enough for the clover to germinate, the snow’s long gone, but you know you have moisture here, and that clover will get off to a great start.
>>GRANT: Today, I’m gonna be planting a blend that’s called Early Start. It’s designed specifically for snow or frost seeding.
>>GRANT: Early Start has some really strong annual clovers in there, and they’re already inoculated and all that good stuff, and a chicory, and a lentil. Now you may not be familiar with lentils, but it’s a very cold hardy, hard, little seed that’s a legume. It’s almost like a smaller soybean; it’s a lentil. It makes the pods that people like to eat. You’ve probably heard of lentil stew or something. But the whitetail market has kinda ignored lentils, but for these situations, it’s a great seed to include in a blend.
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>>GRANT: I mentioned frost seeding. You could wait until all this snow is gone and gamble that the rest of the nights that are cold enough to freeze and thaw, freeze and thaw – that’s a frost. But I prefer snow seeding even more. It’s not gonna get warm enough for those seeds to germinate, and I can see exactly where I’ve walked, so I can get a really good seed distribution in the plot.
>>GRANT: As normal, when I’m broadcasting, my goal is to go, you know, one way – north and south, let’s say – and spread about half the amount for the plot size and then go east and west. That crisscross pattern allows me to ensure I’ve got good coverage everywhere.
>>GRANT: I know from using onX the top of this mountain here is about an acre food plot. So, I’m gonna plant about 25 pounds, shoot for getting about 12 pounds, give or take, on my first, and when I come back the other way, use the rest of the seed.
>>GRANT: No doubt the snow will melt in a few days, but it’ll be a while before the soil temperatures are warm enough for those seeds to germinate. I’ll be checking it and share with you the germination rate and how good the stand looks. Then, hopefully again, come turkey season when a big, ‘ole tom is strutting in the plot.
>>GRANT: You know even when it’s cold outside, as long as you’re moving, walking, it’s not too bad, and conditions like this can be a great time to get outside and enjoy Creation.
>>GRANT: You know the solace of a winter woods is a really good place to be quiet and listen to what the Creator is saying to you.
>>GRANT: Thanks for watching GrowingDeer.