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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was wondering if anyone has experience using Bio Logic Hot Spot (or a similar product). I hunt a really nice mature hardwood ridge and would like to plant a couple 20x20 yard areas. The spot is not accesible with a tractor or wheeler.

The planting instructions say that you rake the debris off the ground and just sperad the seed over the scratched up area. Just curious if this is too good to be true???
 

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Try the rack stacker walk n toss, It the same deal as the hot spot but it works better in our climate, Its available at most shur gain feeds n needs. I used it and it works very well
 

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The short answer is yes, it is too good to be true. Biologic Hot Spot is a blend of Buckwheat and Field Pea, neither of which are shade tolerant. Both do well when compared to other grains for poor soil but Field Pea doesn't stand much browsing and should be planted in full sun. It also has a med-high fertilizer requirement. Buckwheat does very well in our climate but is not shade tolerant and is considered low on the deer preference level so for that reason alone it could do ok but you would have to open the canopy (cut trees) to get it going but does ok with lower fertility.

I don't know what is in the Rackstacker so I can't say but I'll try to find out. Rackstacker has some good mixes made from Canadian certified seed so if they picked some good shade tolerant, low fertility seed choices like white clover, etc. it should do well.
 

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Try the rack stacker walk n toss, It the same deal as the hot spot but it works better in our climate, Its available at most shur gain feeds n needs. I used it and it works very well
My friend and I were just discussing the rack stacker the other day and wondered if it worked. Thanks for the tip!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
My issue is that whwere I want to plant is approx. 1km from a 4 wheeler trail. There is no way to get there with any equipment and the only option is the "no plow" food plots.

Just seeing if anyone has had any luck with this stuff in our climate. I would say that the area would recieve 2-4 hours of sun/day.

Thanks for the help

PS That plot looks awesome!!
 

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You have to consider a few things when looking at woods plots and buying seed. There are shade tolerant mixes out there and there are minimum tillage mixes, not the same thing although there may be overlap on some seed. What most people really want is a mix that can be planted in a heavily shaded area, seeded with minimum tillage, grows with no amendments and deer like and be available for a long period of time. Well it does NOT exist and anyone that says it does is not telling you the truth. There are mixes that are designed to do a little of both leaning toward one or the other area but they still require a minimum of 4 hours of sunlight per day.

I did up a little chart so you can compare some attributes. As you can see Walk N Toss is was designed specifically for minimum tillage since this is where each product in the mix excels collectively. It would do good in a wooded situation if you could get the minimum sunlight to it and do really well with some fertility.

Rackstacker Walk N Toss is one.
Blend - Clover, Rape and Annual Rye
Shade tolerance - High(white), Low and Medium respectively
Fertility - Medium, High and High respectively
Deer Preference - med/High, Medium and Low
Growth Rate - Low/med, High and High respectively
Browsing Pressure - High, Medium and High respectively
Tillage requirement - Minimum, Minimum, Minimum

On small plots you also have to look at deer preference as compared to how fast it gows and the browsing pressure it can stand. If something is highly preferred has slow growth and low browse pressure they will never establish.
If something is low in preference, fast growing and can stand browsing pressure it may be a much better thing to plant as it will establish and be available for a long period of time. Maybe more like you eating cereal instead of candy but it will be utilized.
Good companies spend a lot of time coming up with the proper mixes.
 

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I got a lot from your last post BT, especially the part about fast growing and deer preference, looks like annual rye would be good for me, can you suggest a similar behaving perennial?
I think the deer here will hammer anything beyond a spruce tip, so I think I need something less palatable that grows fast so it wont get destroyed....
Cdog.
 

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I got a lot from your last post BT, especially the part about fast growing and deer preference, looks like annual rye would be good for me, can you suggest a similar behaving perennial?
I think the deer here will hammer anything beyond a spruce tip, so I think I need something less palatable that grows fast so it wont get destroyed....
Cdog.
White and alsikes clover would be a couple good ones to put with annual rye for a perennial. White clover does best in shaded situations and the alsikes does better on poor soil. Both stand browse pressure well.
Actually if you prefer a mix without doing it yourself the rackstacker Walk N toss is pretty good. It has the clover mix as well as annual rye. The only thing extra in there is the brassica but if you get a little sun to it with some fertility it would fill out a mix pretty well.
 

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White and alsikes clover would be a couple good ones to put with annual rye for a perennial. White clover does best in shaded situations and the alsikes does better on poor soil. Both stand browse pressure well.
Actually if you prefer a mix without doing it yourself the rackstacker Walk N toss is pretty good. It has the clover mix as well as annual rye. The only thing extra in there is the brassica but if you get a little sun to it with some fertility it would fill out a mix pretty well.
I should also mention I will have about four acres to plant and the entire area will get sun literally from sunrise to sunset if this changes any ideas you may have, thanks again,
Cdog.
 

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If you have an area that size you are only limited by how much work you want to do. Mind you I can't even imagine raking 4 acres
Backpack in a bag of lime each time you go and you could start increasing the fertility in one area at a time. Get a few bags down and bring in a little fertilizer, rake it in and throw down a mix like Walk N Toss and your set to go.

Personally, and this is just me, I would rather increase the fertility on an 1/8th of an acre so I can plant what I want and produce a lot of forage than try and get the equivelant amount over a much larger area and be limited to only a few choices.

I have a 90x90'(about 1/6th acre) woods plot planted in alfalfa, chicory and ladino clover and the deer can't keep ahead of it through the growing months.
 

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Something else a person should keep in mind when they think about planting is what is growing there now ? If there is old grass or small bushes things will probably grow easily , if there is a heavy canopy or alot of needles on the ground with no grass growing there are reasons for that and more efort will have to be made ( open up canopy , rake away needles add a lot of lime and fertilizer )to get things to grow verses a spot were there is already just undesirable things now growing (such as dry coarse grass , bushes , alders : cut with weed eater , rake debrie scatter desired seeds). P.S. something else I have seen that worked well was a friend took his big weed eater put a steel blade on it and with a good face sheild and gogles cut the old dry growth right down low and it scratched the grownd up a little at the same time then when he raked it he had a little loose dirt and the seeds got a good start . worked well in a remote place . I saw a woman use a stihl weed eater with a tiller type atachment in her flowers one day, figure that would work well too in a remore place.
 

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Something else a person should keep in mind when they think about planting is what is growing there now ? If there is old grass or small bushes things will probably grow easily , if there is a heavy canopy or alot of needles on the ground with no grass growing there are reasons for that and more efort will have to be made ( open up canopy , rake away needles add a lot of lime and fertilizer )to get things to grow verses a spot were there is already just undesirable things now growing (such as dry coarse grass , bushes , alders : cut with weed eater , rake debrie scatter desired seeds). P.S. something else I have seen that worked well was a friend took his big weed eater put a steel blade on it and with a good face sheild and gogles cut the old dry growth right down low and it scratched the grownd up a little at the same time then when he raked it he had a little loose dirt and the seeds got a good start . worked well in a remote place . I saw a woman use a stihl weed eater with a tiller type atachment in her flowers one day, figure that would work well too in a remore place.
My area was all spruce and fir, I have most of it stumped, and will have the dozer with root rake out in the spring.
I plan on buying a dumptruck load of bulk lime.
I am mostly intersted in learning what will grow the fastest and stand the most grazing in perennial and annual varieties, thanks,
Cdog.
 

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If you have 4 acres Cdog and you are putting down a dumpload truck of lime then you won't be limited in anything you can plant.
What you want to decide is what you want the plot(s) to do.
If it is going to be a nutritional plot, hunting plot or a little of both, what you want to accomplish and when you want the deer using it and what equipment you have to put it in and how much you can spend on fertilizer.
Do you want to do it as a mix or strip plant and if a mix do you want to do a perennial mix and annual or do you want it all together.

Don't worry about it being spruce/fir, it's no big deal if you are going to bring the fertility up.

I've posted this plot before but it was done from the same situation as yours. Spruce/fir stand and grubbed out the stumps with a dozer. Then put the lime to it, fertilized and planted with alfalfa, Chicory and ladino clover....



Brief outline of the most popular crops.

Cool season perennial like Red, White and Alsike Clovers are good as a mix with either alfalfa or trefoil. You can also add a little chicory and timothy to the mix for a complete perennial mix. This mix will last only two years exactly as planted. After that the red clover will die out and the alfalfa will start to suffer from competition and your chicory, white clover, alsikes and timothy will be left. Some will reseed and start filling in the space along with a few weeds. You can also frost seed over to get a little longer out of the plot. Usually you can keep this plot for 4-6 year depending on how many weeds you will put up with. If you can keep it mowed off a couple times a year it will also extend the life of the plot by keeping the weeds from seeding themselves.
This is good early in the spring and will be the first plants up. Once the temp gets up around 70degress these will slow down in growth considerably. That is when your warm season annuals really take off.
Things like soybeans, corn and cow pea. They grow quickly and are heavily utilized by deer throughout the summer months, all except the corn. The corn will be growing and producing cobs but the deer leave it alone for the most part till late season. Once the temps start cooling off then they will stop growing but will have been browsed all summer and you should have cobs and bean and pea pods available for later. At this time, usually September the cool season perennial will take another jump in growth until you start getting heavy frost and they shut them down again. Usually the 2nd week of October.
This is when cool season annuals (brassicas, small grains, etc) come to the front along with your standing warm season annuals (corn, beans, etc). If you late plant your cool season annuals in late July/1st of August they are highly digestible come the hunting season. Either that or plant them in the spring for maxium tonnage but the small grains are too mature unless they ultilize the grain itself. Later in the hunting season or once we start getting snow the deer will be hammering the brassica, corn and standing beans.

The way I do it is have a few perennial plots and plant my corn and beans early. I also late plant some beans to bowhunt over (hopefully) as long as the frost holds off. Then I late plant brassica in late july/1st of August. That way I provide nutrition year round and also have hunting plots to keep me from October through the end of the season. After the season there is still brassica, corn and beans for them to feed on to put fat back on for the winter.
 

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Very nice looking plot BT . Yea the lime is definitely the big equilizer. especialy a truck load worked into 4 acres before planting. I suspect though most people would not have the ability to get it into there spot or the financial effort to see the benifits it will do . The great thing with the lime , he will see the residual benifit far into the future . Ps: Bt you are lucky you don't have any neighbores with catle getting loose , they could certainly clean that plot in a hury!
 

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Very nice looking plot BT . Yea the lime is definitely the big equilizer. especialy a truck load worked into 4 acres before planting. I suspect though most people would not have the ability to get it into there spot or the financial effort to see the benifits it will do . The great thing with the lime , he will see the residual benifit far into the future . Ps: Bt you are lucky you don't have any neighbores with catle getting loose , they could certainly clean that plot in a hury!
Thanks for the advice guys.
The spot is on my fathers 100 acre woodlot, the deer are all within a half mile radius of the camp(they would be in the bay) I am mainly looking for a nutritional plot to help the critters year round.
There is hardly anything for them to eat naturally, anything will help.
How would you divide the plot to help them year round as much as possible?
Thanks again,
Cdog.
 

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Very nice looking plot BT . Yea the lime is definitely the big equilizer. especialy a truck load worked into 4 acres before planting. I suspect though most people would not have the ability to get it into there spot or the financial effort to see the benifits it will do . The great thing with the lime , he will see the residual benifit far into the future . Ps: Bt you are lucky you don't have any neighbores with catle getting loose , they could certainly clean that plot in a hury!
LOL if the cows got into it that would just save me mowing it one more time. It would look as good in a few weeks after we got the cows back out


Agree with you 100%. I consider the addition of lime more important than anything else here in NB. Without it you won't see good growth no matter what srops they want to plant. We spread something like 58 tonne the first year we moved back and most of our field were pretty good to start. Lime will do more for their production than fertilizer if the soil is low to start with since the plants have a hard time taking up nutrients in lower phs. Our soils are pretty heavy and even after 15 years of none the ph on many of them were still 6.3 before I added any.

CDog...Give me an idea of what you have for equipment, plow, drill, cultivator, sprayer, etc. Do you plan on fertilizing, spraying, etc. Do you need low input crops with little ground work or do you have the ability and $ to do something like corn? If you do and can prep the site I'd divide it into one acre plots. Perennial mix on 1 acre, brassica mix on 1 acre and an acre of beans and corn done as a mix. Keep the corn to 25% of the mix or less. I'd also use a crop like oats on an acre so that you can rotate the annuals. The oats will provide browsing and grains but will also smoother weeds when it dies down in the fall for a nice clean seedbed the next spring. Then rotate the area each year where you put the brassica. After a full rotation you can turn down the perennial mix to act as a green manure crop and plant your corn/beans there the following year.

If corn and beans are out of the question I would divide the plot in 1/3rds and go with the perennial mix, a brassica mix and oats. Rotate your oats and brassica and after two cycles change up the perennial plot and turn it down as a green manure crop planting your brassica there the next year and start the whole thing over again.
 
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