• Help Support TNDeer:

Food Plots Tractor implement advice

rtaylor

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 27, 2011
Messages
719
Location
tennessee
I have really poor rocky soil so I'd like to eventually move to the no till method and buckwheat as a cover crop to start building up my soil. I have a powerline that I am wanting to plant this fall and trying to figure out the best tool for the job to bust it up to plant. I currently have a box blade that I used for making a food plot last year but it moved more dirt than I wanted. Would a disc harrow be able to work rocky ground that hasn't been worked in a long time or should I use the box blade? I don't want to spend the money to buy the disc if it won't work much better than the box blade.
 

Omega

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 16, 2018
Messages
2,174
Location
Clarksville, TN
I used the chisels on the box blade to break up the soil when I first started my food plot, I just adjusted the chisels long so it was more aggressive, but kept the actual blade just above the surface so it collected little dirt. My plots are small though so didn't have as much to work, but I had a ton of rocks and it moved them around pretty good. I could have used a good rock rake to get the rocks moved but I haven't found one in my price range (and size).
 

FTG-05

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 26, 2013
Messages
2,406
Location
TN
Burn, mow and throw aka no till. Save yourself time, money and effort; better results.

 

wildlifefarmer

Active Member
Joined
May 21, 2018
Messages
38
Location
MdlTn
Not knowing what type land and or equipment you have, it sounds like you have a tractor. Bushhog? IMO, I would invest in a 100 to 120 gal 3 point hitch sprayer and a spreader. Spray area to plant with nonslective herb in the morning and top sow the area in the afternoon. A week later bushhog. If no bushhog just let the sprayed plants melt down.
 

DoubleRidge

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 24, 2019
Messages
3,401
Location
Middle Tennessee
Not knowing what type land and or equipment you have, it sounds like you have a tractor. Bushhog? IMO, I would invest in a 100 to 120 gal 3 point hitch sprayer and a spreader. Spray area to plant with nonslective herb in the morning and top sow the area in the afternoon. A week later bushhog. If no bushhog just let the sprayed plants melt down.

wildlifefarmer,

We experimented with this method on a couple of plots last year....late summer we sprayed....sowed seed.....bush hogged and got a nice soaking rain....for our fall seed blend it worked great.
 

TNTreeman

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 27, 2017
Messages
2,491
Location
Franklin Tn
I have an endless supply of wood chips. In an area that was terrible soil and rock I spread out about 2 football fields worth of chips, disced them in and ended up having a decent area to plant after a couple yrs.
 

rtaylor

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 27, 2011
Messages
719
Location
tennessee
Thanks for the advice. I think I will try the spray, sow and bush hog method. My goal is to eventually get buckwheat growing, sow into the buckwheat, spray and lay it over on the seed so that I never have to disc or turn over the dirt.
 

double browtine

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 4, 2010
Messages
6,455
Location
Cheatham/Montgomery County
Thanks for the advice. I think I will try the spray, sow and bush hog method. My goal is to eventually get buckwheat growing, sow into the buckwheat, spray and lay it over on the seed so that I never have to disc or turn over the dirt.
In the fall, buy a bag of cleaned feed oats in the horse feed area of your local store.

I bought a used 2 row cultivator from an auction. It works great turning and ripping up the woods plots on my property. There are too many rocks on 2 of the plots to use my tiller box. I was afraid it was going to either break the tiller or my tractor. The cultivator followed by the box scraper works great. All you need is good seed to soil contact.
 

FTG-05

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 26, 2013
Messages
2,406
Location
TN
can you use box scraper, just lower the tines for cultivating only?
I've done that before. It works, but it's mostly a PITA. The tines get clogged up plant debris, causing you to have to stop and clean them off often.
 

DoubleRidge

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 24, 2019
Messages
3,401
Location
Middle Tennessee
I also have landscape rake, could use it afterwards, get off rocks

I've used a landscape "rock rake" to collect sticks, roots and rocks off of a new plot before....it works.....but be careful because when the rake gets clogged you will start dragging topsoil....also, having someone on the ground will speed up the process because roots and sticks will get hung up in rake...after each drag having someone on the ground to kick trash out of the rake will prevent you from getting on and off the tractor a thousand times.
 

BSK

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 11, 1999
Messages
68,680
Location
Nashville, TN
For those using the teeth of a box blade to break up rocky soil, just be forewarned that because box-blade teeth are immobile backwards and forwards, you can do some real damage if you hit something big. I actually tore one of the teeth right through the frame of the box-blade when I hit a buried stump I didn't know was there. A chisel plow is the way to go because the teeth are on big springs so they can be pulled back out of the way when hitting something big, but will then pop back into place.
 

BSK

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 11, 1999
Messages
68,680
Location
Nashville, TN
For those who do not have the equipment to break rocky food plot soil, you absolutely can still have fairly productive plots. As others have mentioned, the "mow, spray and broadcast" planting technique DOES work, as long as you limit your seed choices to fairly small-seeded plants, and you over-seed a bit (because germination rates will be lower for seed seeding on top the ground). For years I planted all my plots this way. I just limited my seed choices to nothing bigger than cereal grains. I usually used winter wheat, clovers, and brassicas like turnips or rape. And if possible, it REALLY helps if you can time your broadcast seeding to just before a good rain.

Here's one of my food plots before the ground had been turned even once:
 

Attachments

    You don't have permission to view attachments. Attachments are hidden.

rtaylor

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 27, 2011
Messages
719
Location
tennessee
For those who do not have the equipment to break rocky food plot soil, you absolutely can still have fairly productive plots. As others have mentioned, the "mow, spray and broadcast" planting technique DOES work, as long as you limit your seed choices to fairly small-seeded plants, and you over-seed a bit (because germination rates will be lower for seed seeding on top the ground). For years I planted all my plots this way. I just limited my seed choices to nothing bigger than cereal grains. I usually used winter wheat, clovers, and brassicas like turnips or rape. And if possible, it REALLY helps if you can time your broadcast seeding to just before a good rain.

Here's one of my food plots before the ground had been turned even once:
BSK I think this is the route that I am going to go. I've been putting down lime and in a few weeks I am going to plant buckwheat using the mow spray broadcast method. I'm hoping to plant buckwheat twice this year using this method. Hopefully I can start to build my soil.
 

BSK

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 11, 1999
Messages
68,680
Location
Nashville, TN
BSK I think this is the route that I am going to go. I've been putting down lime and in a few weeks I am going to plant buckwheat using the mow spray broadcast method. I'm hoping to plant buckwheat twice this year using this method. Hopefully I can start to build my soil.
Buckwheat is too large of a seed for this type of planting technique. I've gotten very poor germination from broadcasting it onto the surface. Get some dirt on top of the seed - even a little dirt - and you're good to go.
 

Latest posts

Top