Whether you are a hunter or an animal lover, you might be interested in adding a food plot to your property. Food plots are a great way to improve the health of your local wildlife (or game, if you’re looking at it from a hunting POV) population.
Establishing a food plot isn’t difficult, especially if you take a little bit of time before you jump in to plan it out.
Location, Location, Location
Finding the ideal spot for your food plot is the first step. When picking your location, there are a few things to consider.
First of all, the space needs to be in an open space (but not too big) that gets some sunlight — otherwise you’ll have trouble getting anything to grow. Your wildlife traffic will be improved if this space is proximate to a denser area of woods or growth.
Preparing the Space
Once you’ve found a good spot, you’ll need to test the soil to see if you need to do anything to adjust the pH balance. You can buy a soil testing kit at your local hardware store or online. Use those test results to determine what type of fertilizer should be used in your food plot.
You can use an herbicide to kill unwanted weeds and help improve the health of your soil. Give this time (from 1-2 weeks) to have an impact before proceeding to the next step.
Next you’ll need to remove any more existing grass, debris, and roots from your space. Depending on the size of your food plot, you may want to enlist some heavier machinery here, such as a brush hog.
It’s time to till the space! This is basically breaking up the ground to make it more hospitable for your incoming seeds and plants. A coop full of chickens can accomplish this over time—but you’ll get quicker results with an roto tiller or plow.
Fertilizing and Planting
Like with a swimming pool, maintaining a proper pH balance in your food plot is not a one-time event—you’ll need to continue to monitor and adjust it. In addition to different fertilizers, liming materials are often added to food plots to help them keep a balanced pH level.
From here, you’re ready to start spreading your seed and fertilizer. This part will require you to do a little bit of research to figure out what the wildlife in your area will be most responsive too, and especially depends on what types of animals you are trying to attract!