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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well this was a weekend I was waiting for…wish the weather was better though. Ground was really soaked and everytime I thought it was going to start to dry out just a little , it rained again. Not going to complain about it too much because last year these first couple plots dried up right after I got seed in them and were real duds.

So as of 7/26/2009 here are where the plots stand. I did drop one of the small logtrail plots from the line up this year because I am cutting some birch out of there from now thru winter so I figured with the ATV and cutting logs a plot would not survive, so just mowing that one to keep it maintained.

This year I finally broke free of the cost of the brand name mixes…after some plot failure last year it was an easy separation to make. I got to talking to Chris, I mean “pheasants”, on HPA here and he told me he had started a seed and habitat improvement Company in Ridgeway , PA called “Hilltop Seeds” . I started telling him about my plots and how most are on a hilltop..LOL.. and he came up with some mixes to match my requests for me to try. Although not all plots got total re-dos as some had nice clover coverage…even those got an overseed of Chris’ s Clover and Chicory mix.

So starting from the TOP of the hill to the bottom…the 2009 Plot lineup for my “hill”.

The Camp plot

This one just got some press here…(see Bachelors and Bachlorettes in trail cam forum)..but it was just sprayed and dying weeds then with a mineral block in it. My steps here…mowed the dead weeds, limed and fertilized, tilled with the King Kutter, then laid down the seed, Winter Wheat and Turnip/Rape mix, then finished it off with the chain harrow to mix it all in.

The finished seed bed


Then down to the next bench for the Ridgeline Plot…another second year plot, first year was a bit of a bust but this is a huge travel corridor. Same steps and seed mix as the Camp Plot, except I put in some leftover clover hoping maybe that will start to establish next year since I do mow this one. Could use a few bordering trees dropped to pen it up, but they are promising timber trees. For those of you that have seen my mock scrape pics in the Fall..the big tree on the right and the little tree on my left (licking branch tree) are the BEST set-up I have on the property for that, BTW




Next stop is the Orchard Plot.
This got a little reseed of clover/chicory mix after a mowing, but no major work done here other than 3 mows so far this summer. Got some weeds in it but overall a thick clover patch for a woods plot. I will mow this one more time next week, then maybe just run the chain over it, and I may put some of the turnip mix in here just to add to the buffet for winter. Thoughts?


Dogbone Plot

This one got a real variety put in it…clover, chicory, turnips and even a little winter wheat. Since this one is in near the wintering pines it gets hit all the way to March…so I like to really mix it up here. Basically a little of all the seeds Chris gave me. The green is ryegrass from last year. I did not spray this in 2009, but likely should of.


Pasture Plot

Just something I mowed and started to plant last year figuring it is better than nothing..…clover and chicory over seed this year.




Now I can go Quebec fishing in early August and have no worries about getting seed in..I will fertilize again in mid August then maybe once in mid September…short of that if I don’t get a chance to do anything else up there I am happy on what will be provided this Fall and winter for the deer.

I'll update this as it starts to grow. But the way the rain is coming down maybe rice would of been a good 2009 choice.
 

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WOW! Everything looks GREAT!

When ya gonna take up farming?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I feel like I did take up farming....

I don't care what the ATV manufactuers say, this stuff has to be hard on your machine. I think I'll take mine in and get everything checked over before it moves on to the phase of the year where it becomes , a log skidder, snow plower and deer hauler.

Running those King Kutters behind an ATV in these backwoods plots with little and big stumps, roots, and rocks....is certainly a test of machine and man. Happy to say I did not crash into anything this year to crack my plastic ATV body...or snap off my hitch, now that I have a kolpin 2" reciever type on the Griz, Worked MUCH better and gave me a little more clearance for turning.

Did I have a ball, yes, am I gald it is done ....YES!!!
 

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Hey Farmer John, errrr I mean Rooster, you can bring that King Kutter over here anytime you want and plow my logging road plot!

Your place looks better every time!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks DAWG...Looking like a rainy/sunny mix week here. The Kutters are hard to use on the log trails. Pretty much have to run the length, unhook, turn them around, rehitch, then run the length..etc...been nice to have my helper there.


You know Chris (my seed man) does this stuff for living now, but he does big jobs and i am sure has bigger equipment. That sounds like a great way to spend a work week...got to talking and he just did 300+ acres on the SGL right behind my Mom and Dad's place. Samll world getting smaller.
 

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Looks great RB! Thanks for sharing the pics.

I did some disking on friday and hope to have 3 acres of brassicas in this weekend. Saw a nice buck enjoying my sobyeans on friday night, always nice to see.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks Bake....I did about .3 acres this weekend.
 

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very nice looking plots.
i just limed , fertilized and over seed my 2 plots. didn't even use the drag, just spread seed right before a heavy rain and it is coming up nice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks guys...going up tomorrow evening to poke around and try to get some approxiamte measurements for a planned building site, hope to take the ATV up and check on these plots too. Had a couple great sunny humid growing days since Sunday, so i hope I got germination at least. Rain today...

BTW, the way it is looking using my aerial photos, the "pasture plot" above will eventually be lawn (or horse pasture) and driveway.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Needed to get out tongiht, so i ran over the land and took a ride up the hill.

Day 5 at the camp plot...WE HAVE LIFT OFF..




On a down note...talks with my neighbor about buying some already opened up land near the road from him for our house have hit a bit if a road block....so Plan B, was to clear some of my crabapples and pines (reverted pasture). SO after laying out something using the aerial I decided to poke around in there tonight to try to get a picture in my mind's eye of my future yard and I flush a woodcock and two bunnies.....
I am not really one to take away habitat. I know it sounds funny figuring this house in the country on some land is the real dream here, but it bothers me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
By popular demand
…here are how my plots faired for 2009. The heavy rains seemed to hurt me this year, as much as the droughts did last year. The deer are using all of them so I guess I have no complaints. All new seed I got from 'pheasants" from his Hilltop Seed Company, the germination of it all was fantastic, but the heavy rains and maybe my lack of fertlizing fundshurt overall yield.

From Top of the hill to the bottom.

The CAMP plot, planted in winter wheat and brassica mix…brassica germinated well but had a bout of getting yellow in a lot of areas. Trail cam is getting lots of visits..so I put a stand there I think my wife will be in this stand Saturday with the ML, first person to sit in it this year.




The RIDGELINE plot, home of the best mock scrape site I have, also planted with winter wheat, brassica and some clover that I hope comes thru and establishes a bit next year.



ORCHARD PLOT , second year clover plot, over seeded this year, then seeded with brassicas after final mowing. Brassicas are spotty but some did develop. Clover is getting NAILED right now, definitely the most active plot I have. Unfortunately not just deer…no gun or anything when I came across this guy eating his share. No stand on this one, it is just for the deer




Deer usage..look at the browsed off tops, like this all over


DOGBONE plot..planted with a mix of all seeds I had...mowed it a few times but the ryegrass from mixes past keeps taking over. Clover is establishing, will spray this one next year. Hopefully the deer dig in this while wintering in the pines.



PASTURE PLOT…the prettiest . Chicory and clover Heavy nocturnal use. Always has beds in it.

 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Add them all together and we are just over 1 acre out of 54...
, simply all I have any openings for.

All of them make differences in deer patterns and also the amount of time they spend in my narrow strip of land. Wintertime is when i really gauge the success...I love seeing digging in February.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
If i understood your question.

We had the first frost on monday morning...I have noticed no growth stoppage in any plot. Although the frost was not extremely heavy.

I know they will stay green for a very long time, not sure if they are still growing then.
 
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