Monday, July 9, 2012

Food Plot Equipment

The more food plot equipment you can afford the better, but you can create good deer food plots with a minimal expenditure.

I once saw a video that described food plot creation this way: If you have had tools, like a walk behind tiller, then you can prepare a seed bed 1/4 acre in size in 4 hours. If you have an atv and a disc or tiller, then you can prepare a seed bed 1/2 acre in size in 2 hours. And if you have a tractor you can prepare a seed bed 1 acre in size in 1 hour. These may not be exact numbers, but you get the idea.

You can create a food plot with a walk behind rototiller, but it will take a long time to make even a small plot.

Another option is to find an equipment rental shop and rent a tractor with a rototiller. If you choose to rent you should rent the tractor in the spring or fall and till everywhere that you may want a food plot in the future. Leveling and removing the lumps will take a while and a few passes every year, every time you rent the tractor, will get the job done in 2-3 years.

In any case, if you can get a lawn tractor or atv to your property then you should get an atv harrow . Once you've flattened your plots with a disc or tiller you can ever afterwords do most of your planting with just a harrow.

The three other pieces of food plot equipment you should consider buying are: a backpack sprayer for spraying herbicides; you don't want a hand held sprayer because they are too small and awkward to use.

A hand held seed spreader is necessary so that you do not waste your seeds.

A push broadcast spreader is also useful for spreading fertilizer and lime.

You can get by with just the harrow, spreaders, and sprayer once you've leveled your plots with a rototiller or disc.

If you are going to add another piece of food plot equipment, then a mower will be useful for trimming any clover you have grown. Deer prefer fresh growth, so mowing your clover a few times a year will encourage new growth. (Here in southern Wisconsin, I won't mow after August 1st, so that the last growth will have time to grow before the frost ends the growing season.) A lawn mower, like for you yard, will work but it cuts lower than ideal even at its highest setting.

All of the bigger and better stuff like a plotmaster or an atv spreader or sprayer or disc would all be useful but to start with just get those few items.

(After renting a tractor and a rototiller, I do all of my planting with a lawn tractor and the drag. But the lawn tractor has been beaten up, and an atv would be better.)

For details on the bigger, and more expensive food plot equipment check out the details a this manufacturers website.

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