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Discussion Starter · #1 ·





Ya'll think I'm nuts, ain't? Mebbe, mebbe not.

This area was timbered a long time ago, 15 years maybe? As you can see, nothing but ferns. pH of the soil is about 4 or so.

As you can see, lots of sunlight now. Why? Beech bark disease and tent caterpillers. The beech in this area, is all dying or dead. The caterpillers hastened their deaths. The ferns are taking advantage of the sun and getting thicker. I walked this area, maybe an acre or more, only thing growing I saw was a lonely cherry coming thru the ferns and a maple stump spout. Thats it other than some beech brush starting.

How does this become a food plot? Glyphosate/Roundup, thats how.

On Saturday, with permission from the timber company, my buddy and I sprayed glyphosate on this area. About 10 gallons, mixed a little strong.

Here is my hope/plan. With all the sunlight now in this area, I'm thinking all we need to do is kill off the ferns and allow the area to grow native vegetation that the ferns have been inhibiting. I'm hoping to "release" this area, and it will, all by itself, regen into, first blackberrys, and then some maples or cherry.

Right now, the area is useless to wildlife and the timber company.

In the spring, we will again hit it with Gly to finish off the ferns.

This is just a little experiment to see if this can be done. If it succeeds, we will have created a great food source in an area lacking good food.

If it works, we can continue sprayings in the area to increase the food supply and get regen on the ground. Food and cover, what wildlife needs.
 

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Speaking of which,on the right starts a great growth of blackberries,oaks,sasafrass,maples,etc.To the left is the shaded area which basically has ferns.I'm also going to do a spraying of ferns just to see what might grow.I have an area in the hardwoods where sun hits but the ferns took over.I'm going to start spraying a section and see what comes up.
How much lime you goona put down?
 

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Here's another pic of the area I opened up for sun to come through.In the background it's all shade with no regen.

 

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Dutch that was the same problem that I had when I had property in Clinton County. About 12 years ago, I had a local guy create a 1 1/2 ac. food plot using Whitetail Inst. Clover & alfarack seed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
No liming. We already have great regen in areas with decent sunlight and no ferns. This area should also give decent regen, is my thinking. I just need to make it large enough so they don't eat everything that comes up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
joe8768 said:
Dutch that was the same problem that I had when I had property in Clinton County. About 12 years ago, I had a local guy create a 1 1/2 ac. food plot using Whitetail Inst. Clover & alfarack seed.
I have food plots. I am looking for something that creates both habitat and food, with little cost or maintenance.

Trying to create something a little different.
 

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Keep us posted.I'm still trying to figure why our one plot of brassicas looks great and the other really stinks.I'm thinking lime.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Is it possible to do a timber stand improvement in your woods to increase sunlight?
 

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The pic I posted was actually done to open the canopy for a yard.I was amazed at the new growth when things were opened up.On the other hand my neighbor timbered yet has the thick ferns like you.There are some stumpf sprouts but the sun promoted more fern growth.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Just like the PGC and DCNR do, private landowners also need to treat areas of ferns in order to get regen.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Next trip up, I'd like to put an exclusion cage on the "plot". If I get growth, I want to see if deer are impacting the growth and how much.

I would like to expand the sprayed area next year so it's large enough to withstand browsing.
 

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I guess I still need to get over there sometime.
That looks like a great place to start a plot.
We did have about 1/2" of rain in elk co yesterday.
 

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Good Luck Dutch!

I am looking forward to watching the progress on this one and am confident that you will make it work.
 

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You know, when I saw the first pic I was going to say that I don't know where you got your seed, but you got ripped off!
Looking forward to future reports.
 
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