I have a really nice stand of clover drawing in around 50 deer every evening. During the coldest weather we had, it began to look rough but has began to green back up. Any advice on when and what I need to do to help maintain the stand I have now?
Not sure what variety you have but I maintain my Durana by:
1) Liming semi-annually assuming pH was in good shape when you originally planted. Once you get on a "lime cycle" I don't know that it really matters what time of year. 2) Fertilize...0-20-20 is a good general choice if you don't already have a soil report that states otherwise. 3) Mow it high. Only enough to knock weeds and grass back but barely nipping off the clover blooms later in the growing season. If you do it at just the right time you can really raise the stand's ability to reseed over time.
I only mow once a year but you'll have to keep tabs on things like your local rainfall, browsing, heat stress, competition etc. I invested a little more to establish the Durana but it continues to amaze me year after year with minimal effort/cost on my part. It really is low maintenance if have you a healthy stand (and sounds like you do).
I'm sure others will chime in but this works for me.
Loc: Franklin County
To add to what Boll Weevil said, if you are getting as many as 50 deer eating out of your plot every day, mowing may not be necessary. At least for the purpose of keeping the clover short enough to stimulate new tender growth. That many deer will probably do that for you. If you have weeds though, you might still want to mow once before they get high enough to seed.
That many deer are not eating it during the summer months. There are enough crops that spread them out a bit. Those numbers are reached during this time of year when food sources are limited. I would say the mowing will be needed through the green months. Thanks for the advice.
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