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Discussion Starter #1
This will be my first time try at a temporary food plot. I had this mulcher come in and clear between 1-2 acres. I want to plant oats for this fall. There is a lot of shredded wood material left on the surface. I'm looking for some advise as to how to proceed. This was done last week. I plan on brush hogging the shavings in another week or so after they dry out some to help chip them up into smaller pieces. Do I need to rake off the wood shavings or can I just broadcast seed? Do I need to put lime and fertilizer? I'll post a few photos.







 

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That looks like it will be an awesome food plot. I would put down a bunch of lime several times over the next year. All that wood decomposing will make your soil acidic for sure. You can try oats for now but after you get your ph and nutrients under control you could try a little of everyting here and there. Good work. How much was the mulcher to clear that lot if you dont mind.
 

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No, you don't have to rake off the smaller wood shavings. However looking at your pictures it looks like there is a good bit of long sticks and stuff which will be tough to work with. You might have trouble with a brush hog doing a good enough job but I'm not sure. Not sure what all attachments you have access too, but if you have a rake for a tractor that would get the bigger stuff off the field. If you don't have a rake you might want to get some help and just hand pick off the bigger stuff. If you have access to a disc, disc it real good and you will be left with a decent field to plant. Just make sure you got all the bigger sticks and other junk that will bind up the disc. A no till drill would be ideal for this first year too. I've been using a bobcat with a similar brush cutting head, these machines are really nice to clear junk areas.
 

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I'd have a dozer come in and push all that stuff off, included all the leftover stumps and roots. Lime, lime, lime, lime this fall, then worry about planting next year.
 

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The quickest thing to do is broadcast oats and disk it into the ground. That will keep the soil active for the fall. I would put more effort into planning for next year. Get a soil test, etc
 

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impressive piece of equipment. Can I ask how long it took per acre? I've thought that mightbe just the thing for putting in some shooting lanes.

One thing I might worry about is the root systems of the trees/brush sprouting next year. You might need to treat it with a herbicide next season to kill the root systems. What species were the trees and shrubs? i could not tell from the pictures. If they are sprouting prone species, maybe a annual plot this year?
 

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archeryman32 said:
I'd have a dozer come in and push all that stuff off, included all the leftover stumps and roots. Lime, lime, lime, lime this fall, then worry about planting next year.
That would probably be the best approach.
 

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Looks like you have done a great job, especially by putting it in that thick habitat. Continue to keep doing it right and get a dozer in there, clear off the ground, remove any small stumps and lime it this year. All those stumps sticking up are just going to give you and any tires trouble in the future.
 

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If you do go the dozer route, make sure that you have a good operator. If not you will have all the junk on a pile along with all your topsoil.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
The reason I went with this option was to avoid disturbing the top soil. I figured the mulch would be good for the soil. I think I will have the local feed mill come in with their lime truck and do the whole thing with about 2 tons per acre for now. I will do a soil test in the spring. Those teeth on the machine split the tree shoots right into the ground. There is nothing sharp and pokey to damage tires. It is like walking on moss.
 

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I understand your thinking that it's good for the soil, but some of that stuff, I don't think, is going to rot up very well. Maybe I'm wrong.

Also, that decomposition process takes nitrogen. In other words, as that rots up, it'll steal nitrogen from where it can to complete the process. That won't be good for whatever you plant there.

Wish you could get some of it off.
 

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I think all comments are good, but in any case, this plot just needs time. There's no quick fix to this one. After a few years you'll have a nice plot!
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Maybe this weekend I'll see if I can drag the york rake over it. I think it will clog it up pretty quick though. If that don't work I'll give it another week to dry out some more and then run the bush hog over it and chop it up some more.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
It's been a couple weeks since the mulcher did its work. I went back over the area with my bush hog and it chopped up the shreds nicely. But man was it a dirty job with the ground being so dry, I looked like Pig Pen at the end of the day. Gave it a rest for a day and then was back at it with the York Rake. It is going good. I plan on liming next weekend.



 

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Discussion Starter #19
She's an L3240. I use the bucket to push the piles. Didn't really try just pushing the whole way. I might do that the next visit out there.
 

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i don't know anything about this stuff so forgive me if this is dumb, but what about just burning off those piles of chipped up wood, it's been dry enough!
 
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