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Old Apr 29th 2009, 05:51 PM   #1
 
  Apr 2009
  Hallock, MN
I am looking for advice on what to plant in my deer pens. I have used Imperial whitetail clover before and had success with it, but I would like to hear someone else's take, from a nutritional and cost effective standpoint, on what to plant. I have about 8-10 acres to plant. I had soil samples done 5 years and I believe they had a Ph of 6.7-6.8 . I'm not sure if that number changes much over time but I am thinking of getting another soil sample done.

Also , I live in a cold climate (northern Red River Valley--MN). We seem to get plenty of rain fall ,lots of snow and extremely cold winters. --That's what drew me to the Imperial brand-- the clover stays green thru the winter.

I would be happy to hear any suggestions.
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Old Apr 29th 2009, 07:23 PM   #2
 
  Apr 2009
  Central Illinois
We use Imperial Whitetail clover in our pens and the deer really love it but they like variety. We also plant alfalfa,forage turnips,chickory,and a little winter wheat. Along the fences where they do most of their walking we've tried a forage rye grass. I think it was some kind of Italian rye. They seem to like it. I would definately put some lime on before you plant and get your ph closer to 7 and the lime helps with some of the parasites. It will allow the plants to absorb more nutients. Rick
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Old Apr 30th 2009, 05:33 AM   #3
 
  Apr 2009
  Hallock, MN
Rick,

Can you hurt anything by over liming? I was told by the farmer who farms the land all around me that no one limes anything in my area because it wasn't needed. If it doesn't damage the soil I would do it. I like your idea of variety also. Last year I used Imperial's Alfa-Rack on about 3 acres or so. It has alfalfa in it along with some other forages the deer really liked.Were the turnips and chicory you planted an Imperial brand? If not, what brand were they, or what brand would you recommend ? Another question is, do turnips have a high nutritional value?



thanks,

Tom
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Old Apr 30th 2009, 06:02 AM   #4
 
  Apr 2009
  Central Illinois
While a 6.7 is plenty good for growing clover and alfalfa 7.0 is even a little better. I would spead some pellitized lime just to help with the parasites and if it goes a little higher I wouldn't worry about it at all. As far as brands of chickory I did use mostly Imperial chickory but in one pen I used a chickory from the local feed store and it worked just as good. The turnips are mostly ignored until we have a good frost then the deer really start on them. Evidently the sugars in the turnips get released or something after a frost and become alot more palatible. I just ask for forage turnips because they put alot more top on it which are good for the deer. If you can't get a forage turnip then a purple top turnip will work too. The deer will even learn to root up the turnip and eat the bulb(or turnip itself) during the winter months. I have also used beets instead. Just a side note on the chickory, it appears that a regular diet of chickory may help to control some internal parasites. However there are some chickories that aren't as palatable thats why I usually use the imperial whitetail chikory because I know it works. Also the higher the PH in your soil the more palatable the chickory. Rick
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Old Apr 30th 2009, 06:07 AM   #5
 Rick's Avatar
 
  Apr 2009
  West Salem, Ohio

Cervid: Whitetails
can you spread lime in the deer pen with deer in them with no fear of harm to the deer??
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Old Apr 30th 2009, 06:13 AM   #6
 
  Apr 2009
  Central Illinois
Just another thought about variety. I have also found that the deer also eat dandilions. I don't know how nutrious they are but we have a pen with not real good soil in it and had alot of dandilions in it along with some yellow clover in it and they love it. Now there are only a few dandilions coming up in that pen and the deer head straight for them. I don't know about up your way but around here the seed is plentiful and free.

Rick
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Old Apr 30th 2009, 07:17 AM   #7
 
  Apr 2009
  Central Illinois
Rick I have spread pellitized lime in deer pens with no ill effect. Ofcourse the pelletized lime falls past the leaves of the plant and to the ground since it contains alot less dust in it. It also is used by the plants quicker than regular rock lime. My vet even recomended spread lime on the floor of my fawn boxes to fight parasites. Ofcourse we cover the lime with pine shavings for bedding to keep the fawns fron direct contact. Rick
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Old Apr 30th 2009, 07:30 AM   #8
 
  Apr 2009
  Karnak, IL
I plant imperial whitetail clover in my pens and preserve.Out in the preserve I plant more alfalfa.
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Old Apr 30th 2009, 07:52 PM   #9
 Antlershed's Avatar
 
  Apr 2009
  cental Pennsylvania

Cervid: taxidermy
I always plant winter wheat, rye, and oats, deer love all those. I also planted some chicory and alfalfa last year, but it didnt turn out. My pens are horrible for planting, its all slate, so it dosent hold moisture, in mid summer most grasses and weeds are brown and dryed out. buckskin, i noticed also over the years that the deer love dadelions, its funny in the yard there are thousands, and at the edge of the yard where the pens start you look in and there are zero. they pick them as they pop up.
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Old Apr 30th 2009, 09:34 PM   #10
 
  Apr 2009
  Tobin Lake, Saskatchewan
We were discussing this on the old forums, quackgrass is as hardy and resilient as it gets ( it is usually listed as an invasive weed) its protien is 17+ has great fibre and is the only thing that will be on the earth longer is cockroaches , one way to plant dandylions in your pens is to take the push mower with a bagger and mow some that are setting seed and spread it on your pens
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Old May 3rd 2009, 04:25 PM   #11
 
  Apr 2009
hey all. i am also in minnesota and just starting out with the deer farming thing. just about ready to put my plots in and would also like advice on what would be a good starting point for good plots year round, thanks chris
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Old May 3rd 2009, 08:52 PM   #12
 
  Apr 2009
  Sullivan,MO 63080
Hi, Curtis Do you know where you can get quackgrass seed? I have searched the internet and cant find anyone who sells it. Thanks, Brad
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Old May 3rd 2009, 11:06 PM   #13
 
  Apr 2009
  Tobin Lake, Saskatchewan
Brad, I live in Saskatchewan so sending uncleaned uncertified seed across the line would be nothing but trouble , keep looking on line I did see it somewhere, start a thread and let the www do the work for you, the stuff I get is the seed they clean out of alfalfa and red clover up here, I do have a friend who works at a seed farm in Montana I will call him and get back to you if I find anything useful
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Old May 4th 2009, 11:58 AM   #14
 
  May 2009
I have had the best luck planting in pens using perennials with strong root systems. Chicory seems to do as well as anything. The chicory that Biologic makes really grows well on our dirt which is pretty poor but drains well. I also use the kale,rape, and turnip blend Biologic makes, Maximum. I have at least one pen with it available almost year round, once they get used to eating it, they dont have to have a frost to like it, they'll eat it thru the summer. We use the Clover Plus in our big fields in our preserve, the bucks love it.
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Old May 6th 2009, 07:40 PM   #15
 
  Apr 2009
  Tobin Lake, Saskatchewan
I just got a call from my seed guy im montana, he said you can not sell or ship quackgrass seed in the U.S. he recomended intermeadiate or pubesant wheat grass as the closest substitute. Star seed office in Kansas, check their web site.
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