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dbltree
11-25-2009, 11:34 AM
Dbltree, What do you typically plant after a brassica crop? I know you have mentioned the allelopathic response of brassicas in that they can inhibit seed germination and growth. Was just wondering if I could go back in and plant something this spring or should I wait and plant it into a fall plot of rye and clover.

It depends on how much debris is leftover as to the allelopathic chemicals, sometimes you can frost seed clover into the brassica patch but if that doesn't work I usually till it up and either plant oats and berseem clover or buckwheat.

Buckwheat is a safe bet because the seeds are larger and unaffected by the allelopathic chemicals but it also doesn't fix any nitrogen.

The forage radishes also have very strong allelopathic affects so I'm going to try some different tests this year and see what works best but leaving it bare all asome should never be an option.

Always keep the soil growing and working for you!

This was my first year growing brassicas and they did great until the deer decided they were ready to mow em down in late sept. Once the rye grain and clover was really kickn they gave em a break and let them rebound a little. Now they're back to hammering them again:) Hopefully they'll leave a few turnips in the ground for late season. This is also the 1st year they haven't stripped the sorghum bare. Looks like they might be leaving it until a good snow or two

I found the same thing in that my clover and alfalfa along with the rye and pea plots kept them from murdering my brassicas so early. They did severely set them back and root production on those brassicas is very limited.

Planting plots in strips or some type of blocks really helps to keep deer from concentrating on one plant type and also keeps them moving between strips.

This a sample on a friends farm where you can see strips of brassicas with some volunteer oats in them and then strips of winter rye/peas and red clover.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Viewofplotstrips.jpg

Eventually we'll have a third set of strips that will be white clover and in some cases a 4th strip of milo and/or egyptian wheat.

Some folks make the mistake of mixing them all together in which case they never do well, but planting strips of crops that are compatiable still gives us all the plant species in each plot but not in away that they must compete individually.

The strips make a perfect scenario to allow one to rotate between crops year to year. :way:

whitetail fanatic
11-26-2009, 05:40 AM
"Soybeans don't even come plose to a forage radish in breaking up hardpan in fact I wouldn't even consire soys for that purpose." Maybe what I was thinking was for the top layer of soil. Seems like I had alway heard that soybeans loosen the soil, maybe that's just the surface clods in cloddy fields?

So the radish could be seen as a "poor man's deep tiller", like what they use with the very deep tines to break up the hard pan down deep? Does the forage radish get so big and thick that it will drown out clover like dwarf essex rape would? If you were going to plant forage radish and red clover together, what rate would you plant the radish at? What rate would you recommend for a pure plot of the radish only?

Thanks dbltree.

dbltree
11-26-2009, 03:58 PM
"Soybeans don't even come close to a forage radish in breaking up hardpan in fact I wouldn't even consider soys for that purpose."

Maybe what I was thinking was for the top layer of soil. Seems like I had alway heard that soybeans loosen the soil, maybe that's just the surface clods in cloddy fields?

So the radish could be seen as a "poor man's deep tiller", like what they use with the very deep tines to break up the hard pan down deep? Does the forage radish get so big and thick that it will drown out clover like dwarf essex rape would? If you were going to plant forage radish and red clover together, what rate would you plant the radish at? What rate would you recommend for a pure plot of the radish only?

Thanks dbltree.

Yes...tillage radishes will break up hardpan that normally one would need a subsoiler for. The tops could shade out other plants, although they are finer then the big rape or turnip leaves.

Plant forage radish at 10#'s per acre alone but in mixes I plant the following...

September 1st: in this mix the red clover will be tiny and the forage radish will not get as larger nor as thick at 5#'s per acre.

Winter rye 50-80#'s per acre (56#'s = a bushel)
Spring oats 80-120#'s per acre (32#'s = a bushel)
Austrian Winter Peas 20-80#'s per acre (4010 or 6040 field peas will work fine for 1/2 the price)
Red Clover 8-12#'s per acre
Groundhog Forage Radish 5#'s per acre


July 15th: In this mix the forage radish will have time to put down a very long tap root provided it has plenty of nitrogen and competes well with the other brassicas at 5#'s per acre.

Dwarf Essex Rape Seed 1#
Purple Top Turnips 1#
Appin forage turnip 1#
Barkant Forage Turnip 1#
Barnapoli Rape Seed 1/2#
Pasja Hybrid Brassica 1/2#
GroundHog Forage Radish 5#

If you have some really compacted areas, I would plant the Groundhog radish alone at 10#'s per acre and fertilize at 60-90#'s of actual nitrogen and plant them by late July...;)

dbltree
11-27-2009, 03:31 PM
I took some soil samples from some plots that are "troubled" to say the least and sent them in for testing. I like using a little weed trowel so I can take a narrow sample without lugging a shovel or some such.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/SDC13637.jpg

I used soil sample bags that I requested free from the ISU Soil and Plant Lab

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/SDC13636.jpg

Most states have thier own soil labs and you can contact your local extension agent for more information but I send mine to ISU's soil lab.

This link is to a soil sample information sheet

Soil Sample Info Sheet (http://www.agron.iastate.edu/soiltesting/ST8WEB.pdf)

ISU Soil Lab home page:

ISU Soil and Plant Analysis Laboratory (http://www.agron.iastate.edu/soiltesting/default.html)

$8 a test is a pretty reasonable expense to know what your soil needs and if PH needs to be corrected and gave me some answers as to why this brassica plot did very poorly

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Poorbrassicas.jpg

In this case PH was 6.35 but Phosphorus (P) was low and needs 50#'s per acre and 80-90#'s of Potassium (K) plus whatever projected crop removal requires.

P&K levels can be built up so that they can easily be maintained sometimes just by growing the right combination of crops. Both winter rye and forage radish are capable of pulling up potassium from sub soils for instance. They can do this at higher rates the better the soil is and if plenty of nitrogen is available to encourage growth and much of the N can come from previous legume crops.

These are just some very basic links to help you understand more about these elements

Interpret Soil Tests (http://www.al-labs.com/publications/soiltestreading.pdf)

Understanding Potassium (http://extension.missouri.edu/publications/DisplayPub.aspx?P=G9185)

More about Phosphorus (http://www.avocadosource.com/tools/FertCalc_files/info_phosphorus.htm)

Understanding Your Soil’s Lime Requirements (http://www.optimise.net.nz/Optimise/Home/Entries/2009/7/1_Understanding_Your_Soil%E2%80%99s_Lime_Requireme nts_.html)

dbltree
12-02-2009, 09:21 AM
These Groundhog tillage radishes continue to amaze me! I planted some in my garden about the second week of September thinking I would share pictures of healthy ungrazed plants. The garden is fenced with a rabbit proof fence but deer can easily hop over it and that's exactly what they did.

Nothing else in the garden but these things and...deer tracks!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/SDC13806.jpg

Every plant has been completely or partially eaten

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/SDC13807.jpg

Now one might say "big deal", deer raid gardens and such all the time but for the past three years on my home farm deer have absoutely refused to touch beautiful healthy brassicas...not so much as a nibble, yet they hop over a fence literally feet from my house to eat these forage radishes!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/SDC13810.jpg

Only a few yards away is a lush alfalfa field where I watch them feed on a daily basis from my kitchen window, so they are certainly not hungry or desperate for feed. They are stopping to feed on these as they return with bellies full so there is no other reason to eat them except because they like them!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/SDC13809.jpg

In the meantime the roots are breaking up hardpan and recyling nitrogen so these things are a "win-win" plant!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/SDC13808.jpg

GroundHog Brand radish (http://www.ampacseed.com/groundhog.htm)

ask for them at Welter seed or talk to your local supplier about handling them

Welter Seed (http://www.welterseed.com/)

GH radish seed is priced at $2.65 a pound at Welters so compare prices before you order forage/tillage radish seed of any kind... ;)

waylonb19
12-04-2009, 05:49 PM
So the deer still haven't touched my turnips...I am hoping late season muzzleloader they are eating them. SOOOOOO if they don't eat them I am worried that if I plant them again next yr or the following yr. they still won't eat them. I don't want to waste my time and money planting them again. What makes them all the sudden start eating them if they don't touch them the first yr?

dbltree
12-06-2009, 03:39 AM
So the deer still haven't touched my turnips...I am hoping late season muzzleloader they are eating them. SOOOOOO if they don't eat them I am worried that if I plant them again next yr or the following yr. they still won't eat them. I don't want to waste my time and money planting them again. What makes them all the sudden start eating them if they don't touch them the first yr?


I hope that brasicas were not the only thing you planted?

Now you see why I plant strips of brassicas, winter rye and peas and clover (not mixed but sepreate strips of each) This allows me to rotate crops each year all within one plot.

It keeps deer moving among food sources, keeps them from wiping out one food source and never allows them to run out of feed.

Deer adapt to brassicas over a few years and I would strongly encourage you to give the Groundhog Radishes a try...they are eating those when they don't touch other brassicas.

If you include other food sources in those plots, they will adapt to them and then eventually start wiping them out....

Here an example of "strip plotting"....

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Viewofplotstrips.jpg

waylonb19
12-07-2009, 06:49 AM
Yeah I only planted brassicas. I thought about that too...I should of put some clover or something different off to one side. Live and learn I guess. I have a dozer sitting behind my house right now getting ready to clear out a timber plot for me. So next yr I will try to mix it up a little different. I still have faith they might start hitting the turnips when the nasty weather hits.:confused:

dbltree
12-07-2009, 01:55 PM
they might start hitting the turnips when the nasty weather hits

I will be suprised if they don't...keep us posted! :way:

Hat Trick
12-08-2009, 07:52 AM
I too just planted Brassicas. I mean, they have 40 acres of beans, 8 acres of alfalfa and 6 acres of clover/grass to eat. Starting on the 4th (trail camera evidence) they just absolutely started hammering them. They have eaten nearly half the green browse in the plots in a matter of a few days. They have yet to eat the turnips yet, but I imagine they will eat the crap out of them once they have nothing else to eat.

I have an old friend (70's) that hunts on my place and he has been eating the turnips for weeks from the stand and he said in the last few days they really sweetened up. He picks one on his way in and slices it up. HA HA.

I plan to sit over one of these plots or some standing beans I left. I pray the deer come in droves from all over for a snack!

bowhuntr311
12-08-2009, 09:36 AM
I have an old friend (70's) that hunts on my place and he has been eating the turnips for weeks from the stand and he said in the last few days they really sweetened up. He picks one on his way in and slices it up. HA HA.

I had never really thought about this but it make sense. Certainly would be a way to tell when the they start to sweeten up.

Hat Trick
12-08-2009, 10:18 AM
I had never really thought about this but it make sense. Certainly would be a way to tell when the they start to sweeten up.

Yep, but when I put two and two together what turned out to be true was they started to pound them when all the green browse keeled over. They are hammering them right now.

waylonb19
12-14-2009, 07:04 PM
Well I made it back to the plot today. That was after I burried my truck in the snow (had to be pulled out) and a long walk back to the plot. They have started EATING :D It looks like they just started within the last few days. The green tops that are sticking out of the snow have all been nipped off. They haven't started digging down to the other browse that is buried under the 14" of snow we got. Late season is hopefully going to be good. Now I just have to blade me out a trail so I can get back there to hunt it. :drink1:

risto2351
12-15-2009, 01:02 PM
With all this snow would it be better if the turnips were bladed or snowblowed off or should it just be left and let them fend for themselves ??

They are hitting mine but half is under snow and the other is blown off clean.




Well I made it back to the plot today. That was after I burried my truck in the snow (had to be pulled out) and a long walk back to the plot. They have started EATING :D It looks like they just started within the last few days. The green tops that are sticking out of the snow have all been nipped off. They haven't started digging down to the other browse that is buried under the 14" of snow we got. Late season is hopefully going to be good. Now I just have to blade me out a trail so I can get back there to hunt it. :drink1:

dbltree
12-19-2009, 05:28 AM
With all this snow would it be better if the turnips were bladed or snowblowed off or should it just be left and let them fend for themselves ??

They are hitting mine but half is under snow and the other is blown off clean.

I suppose they would appreciate being able to get to it but clearing that much snow might be a hassle!

I think if I was hunting a plot like that and had the option, I migh blade a swath clear the day before and then "mop up" when they come in to feed! ;)

Deer almost always choose to forage on rape versus turnip tops early in the season, so why bother with adding turnips to a brassica mix?

Once deer adapt to foraging on brassicas they generally will begin to utilize the turnips tops earlier in the fall but it is the roots that are important for a late winter attraction. I had a few days before our late muzzleloader season opens so I decided to go to a friends farm where we had planted the following mix in late July.

Dwarf Essex Rape Seed 1#
Purple Top Turnips 1#
Appin forage turnip 1#
Barkant Forage Turnip 1#
Barnapoli Rape Seed 1/2#
Pasja Hybrid Brassica 1/2#
GroundHog Forage Radish 5#

We have implemented "strip plotting" on his place so that we had strips of brassicas and strips of winter rye/oats/peas and Groundhog forage radish and red clover. I'll share pictures of the rye in the cereal grain forum but despite being right beside a field of corn that was 1/2 standing 1/2 harvested, they poured into the food plots and fed on both the rye and the turnip roots.

The brassicas at first glance don't look like much this time of year

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/12-18Brassica.jpg

but closer inspection reveals a bountiful harvest that deer are feeding heavily on

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/12-18-09Turnips.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Eatenturnips.jpg

Good quality brassica seeds, regardless of source should run roughly $2-3 a pound and despite claims by those companies who market seed exclusively to hunters my testing has proven absoutely no preference or advantage to any brand or variety over another. Typically however, companies who advertise and market products solely to hunters will charge 2-3 times the real value of the seed.

In 2 1/2 hours I watched upwards of 40 deer enter these plots and feed in some cases for an hour or more on these brassicas, none of which came from "buck on a bag" sources. These deer were certainly not starving with freshly harvested corn only yards away and in fact walking thru the corn to get to the food plot.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Deer%20in%20brassicas/12-16doegroupinturnips.jpg

Several good bucks that appear to be in the 4 yr old range literally gorged themselves on the turnip roots

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Deer%20in%20brassicas/1buck4Turnip.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Deer%20in%20brassicas/1Buckinbrassica.jpg

This ole boy stayed out there for nearly 2 hours stuffing him self with turnip roots

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Deer%20in%20brassicas/2buck2withturnip.jpg

and stayed until it was too dark to take pictures!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Deer%20in%20brassicas/2buck8.jpg

From a little after 3:00

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Deer%20in%20brassicas/DSC00672.jpg

until dark...the brassicas were getting hammered!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Deer%20in%20brassicas/500deer.jpg

These deer had never tasted a brassica in their life before this year and last year this field was weeds 8 feet high so they were not adapted or trained to feed there before this year.

Welters Seed is a great source for brassica seed but there are many sources including nannyslayers co-op, Welters web site is very informative and will give you a fair price comparison to check against your local sources.

Welter Seed & Honey Co. (http://www.welterseed.com/productItems.aspx?id=3&org=0)

I urge everyone to avoid planting ALL brassicas but to include seperate plantings of cereal grains and clovers to allow for rotations and to provide a steady year around source of feed for your whitetails...... ;)

Nontypcl1
12-20-2009, 05:57 AM
I decided to head out and check some cameras for the first time since we got 16" of snow dumped on us. While I was out I decided to trudge through the snow and check out what kind of activity the plots were seeing.

This is the first year I've planted brassicas, and well, the deer love them. After not touching them until mid september the deer have been hammering them ever since. After the rye and oats really got going the brassicas got a little break. Now that everyting is covered up in a thick layer of snow things have been a little different.


No need for blading the snow off this plot. Looks like something already beat me to it.:)

http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f71/stepcol/food%20plots/tmpphpch3wIW.jpg


Where they have dug through the snow there's nothing left but bare soil. Any trace of foliage or turnip has been devoured.

http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f71/stepcol/food%20plots/tmpphpO9avyI.jpg

Looks like I know where I'll be come monday evening.
After only planting a 1/2 acre of brassicas this year I think I better devote another plot to these tasty morsels

risto2351
12-21-2009, 10:57 AM
"I suppose they would appreciate being able to get to it but clearing that much snow might be a hassle!

I think if I was hunting a plot like that and had the option, I migh blade a swath clear the day before and then "mop up" when they come in to feed! ;)"

Paul,
All I was thinking was making it a little easier for them and and keeping them there. With drifts up to 18"-2 foot I see them leaving to hit something else a little easier.
Where it is only an inch or two they are hammering them. The doe I shot the other night was actually in the alfalfa eating right next to the turnips.

I see most of your snow is gone? Ours is not going anywhere soon.

Just trying to get the most bang for my buck (no pun intended). Otherwise the 500 - 600 acre standing cornfield is looking very good to them and my turnips may sit and rot like last year under the ice.

whitetail fanatic
12-23-2009, 07:55 PM
Here is a quote, supposedly from Dr. James Kroll. What do you all think of this? Is there anything to worry about here? Seems like it might just be a scare tactic that buck forage oats is using as advertising so they get more people to buy their product instead of brassicas.

"In recent years, brassicas (forage turnips, rape, kale, cabbage and fodder
radishes) have become popular, cheap forage plantings for white-tailed
deer food plots. Although brassicas have been used for grazing, allowing
animals such as white-tailed deer to consume large quantities can be
dangerous. These plants often contain large quantities of the alkaloids,
glucosenolates, thioglucosides and SMCO (S-methylcysteine suphoxide),
which are linked to a host of conditions including: poor performance,
hemolytic anemia, goiter, nitrate/nitrite poisoning, rumen stasis (paralysis),
polioencephalomalacia syndrome, bloat, embryonic death, poor
conception, reduced birth weights, tongue extension, excess salivation,
acute respiratory distress resulting in sudden death, blindness and
diarrhea. Glucosinolate concentrations of as little as 0.4% by dry weight is
considered to be toxic. Studies have reported concentrations in the tops
and leaves of kales to be 1.2 to 6.3 grams per kilogram; and, forage rape or
canola to range 2.9 to 11.9 grams per kilogram). Roots of turnips have
concentrations as high or higher than those found in leaves and stems.
The toxic dose of SMCO is 15 grams per 100 kilograms (fatal anemia) and
10 grams per 100 kilograms (low grade anemia). Concentrations of these
chemicals are reported to increase immediate after a drought and frost
conditions. The potential for poisoning is decreased if animals are
encouraged to eat other forages or by using rotation grazing; both
practices not practical with whitetails, since they tend to graze brassicas
heavily during winter. If you use brassicas in your food plot program, you
should take care to limit acreage and combine with other plants less toxic
to ruminants."

dbltree
12-23-2009, 08:03 PM
Seems like it might just be a scare tactic that buck forage oats is using as advertising so they get more people to buy their product instead of brassicas.


That's exactly what it is and I have no respect for people who use these types of tactics to sell or promote products.

Deer all ready have access to natural browse, so unlike livestock that are confined and have no choice, any toxicity issues are completely not an issue.

As you can see I do ALWAYS provide other food sources but not for the reasons Dr. Kroll listed...:(

whitetail fanatic
12-24-2009, 09:05 AM
Thanks dbltre, that's what I was thinking too. No matter how much deer like a certain food plot, they still instinctively eat a large portion of natural food sources in their daily diet. Between all our food plots, at a minimum we always have corn, rape, oats, and alfalfa. Plus we have excellent browse in overgrown CRP areas and selectively cut timber, with a couple areas that are almost clear cuts. Diversity is the key with both food plots and natural food sources such as browse, hard and soft mast.

dgallow
12-25-2009, 02:40 PM
Momma says, "Marketing is the devil!". :moon:

The theory of ruminant dietary selection and intake is perhaps explained best by Keetlars and Tolcamp in a 1993 article...the gist is that ruminants select certain plants and self regulate intake with the overall goal of longevity....the faster the animal's basal metabolic rate the shorter the longevity. This is a valid explanation for the lack of prevalance of ruminal acidosis in deer with unlimited access to corn in the vast ag fields of the mid-west or in TX where heavy baiting is common. Even with abundant acorns, deer in the crosstimbers will rarely consume more than 35% of intake as acorns. Some biologist need to go back to school! Improve native habitat and plant some plots...your deer will do fine!

Turnip bulbs and clover are popular with our deer right now!

We have blue-collar deer and they don't need white-collar seed! :way:

dbltree
12-26-2009, 05:50 PM
We have blue-collar deer and they don't need white-collar seed!

I like it! :grin::way:

letemgrow
12-26-2009, 05:58 PM
Deer can regulate themselves, afterall, do you see them founder on a beanfield or cornfield like cows do in the summer time when they get out?? A deer knows when to stop eating and move on and besides, they browse all the way to and from the plots in most cases I have seen on native vegetation so I would not be worried about planting brassicas. If deer are hammering them then I do not see any reason why they are not good for the deer.

HannibalBowhunter
12-29-2009, 01:32 PM
If I follow a soybean planting with brassicas the following year does it reduce/negate the need for additional fertilizer? What about soybeans that were overseeded with rye?

dbltree
12-29-2009, 03:59 PM
If I follow a soybean planting with brassicas the following year does it reduce/negate the need for additional fertilizer? What about soybeans that were overseeded with rye?

You gain roughly 30 nitrogen credits per acre, in otherwords you may only need 50#'s of N instead of 80 for your brassicas.

The rye will just recycle any N it's root systems have absorbed as it breaks down as well. You probably would gain the most if you tilled under the rye in late May and planted buckwheat then till that under in July for the brassicas....:)

dbltree
01-01-2010, 10:46 AM
12-22-09 update on brassicas that were heavily grazed all summer. They recovered in September when deer focused on clover and rye but they eventually turned on them with a vengence and mowed what was left to the ground.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/12-22-09Turnippatch.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Brassica1.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Brassica3.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Brassica6.jpg

A close up look reveals that they are knawing off even the tiniest semblence of a root, regardless if it is turnip or radish.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Brassica5.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Brassica4.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Brassica2.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/12-22-09Brassicas.jpg

It is difficult to grow roots of any size when they graze the tops so heavily during the summer months and in these cases it is difficult to use too much fertilizer. Forcing growth through optimum nutrient applications is the only answer when fencing and increased acreage is not an option.
In my case strip cropping clover, alfalfa, peas and rye prevented my brassicas from being wiped out entirely and allowed them to at least last until mid December.

When deer adapt to foraging on brassicas, the type or brand will matter not the least to deer and over time one will find it difficult to plant enough to satisfy them.... ;)

dbltree
01-06-2010, 11:52 AM
My friend Andy Yost has some great video of deer pouring into his brassica plot on Midwest Whitetail..I suspect he'll be planting more brassicas next year!

Midwest Whitetail Episode 24 (http://www.midwestwhitetail.com/gallery/41/media/1712/mwmo24-late-season.html)

Hat Trick
01-06-2010, 12:07 PM
My friend Andy Yost has some great video of deer pouring into his brassica plot on Midwest Whitetail..I suspect he'll be planting more brassicas next year!

Midwest Whitetail Episode 24 (http://www.midwestwhitetail.com/gallery/41/media/1712/mwmo24-late-season.html)


You bet I will be Paul! I plan to frost seed clover into them in Feb and then till under half of it to do a yearly rotation to keep them from disease etc. I am also going to try some strip plotting nearby as well.

They ignored them except for the ocassional bite here and there until around Thanksgiving when they started to gradually graze on them. Just after the first snowfall Dec 7th they started hammering them non-stop.

I will tell you I was concerned. My neighbor had planted Brassicas for a couple years with little to no success. I saw one of his plots full of rotted turnips the size of softballs last March. I am not sure if they had plenty to eat or if they just started to get used to them or what, I don't know really. What I do know is they have eaten all 3 of my one acre plots and they are digging all around much like you see in Paul's posts. I have no doubts they will eat them until there is nothing left, what is left:D

They were staging in them before heading to the standing beans we left.

Thanks again Paul!

Andy

MK M GOBL
01-06-2010, 01:16 PM
They have been hammering my purple top turnips for the past several weeks.
http://iowawhitetail.com/forum/picture.php?albumid=197&pictureid=2610

Daver
01-06-2010, 02:16 PM
Wow, neat pic with all those bucks in it, you should be able to scoop a few sheds in there! :)

dbltree
01-09-2010, 09:51 AM
One mistake many landowners make is leaving soil barren in the spring, allowing weeds to come up and wasting vaulable time in which the soil can be "working" for you.

A spent brassica patch should always be followed by a spring legume if at all possible or at the very least a crop of buckwheat.

Frost seeding red clover is an option but in some cases the allelopathic chemicals in the brassicas can cause problems...not always but it does happen is just something to be aware of.

Berseem or crimson clovers are annuals that are inexpensive and can be planted into a spent brassica plot after first tilling the soil good. Oats can be added to provide spring forage and then clip them off once the clover gets established.

As mentioned, buckwheat is an option but not being a legume it provides no nitrogen for the next crop to follow leaving it low on my list of possibles.

I like to follow my brassicas with my winter rye/oats/peas/forage radish and red clover combo, this means I can till the red clover under for the next crop of brassicas. The rye and forage radishes will recycle nitrogen in the soil releasing it the following spring so they have a distinct advantage over other crops in this regard.

In order to recycle it however there has to be N in the soil, so the more N fixed by legumes the better and all of that can be utilized by the next brassica crop by the decomposing plants the following summer.

This leaves some additional options such as peas (field, cow, and iron clay), soybeans and vetches and of all these chickling vetch is a new but very powerful tool for fixing a large amount of N in only 60-70 days.

AC Greenfix Chickling Vetch (http://www.welterseed.com/ProductDetails.aspx?id=389)

I have not tried this green manure crop yet but it I intend to give it a try this spring on many of my spent brassica plots.

The following is basic information listed on Welters web site that might help landowners decide if this product might work well for them... ;)

AC Greenfix is a new high nitrogen annual legume that is highly nutritious with a high protein count. AC Greenfix can easily fix 80-100 lbs of nitrogen per acre with over 200 lbs shown in some soil tests in only 60-70 days!

Extensive studies have shown that AC Greenfix can greatly reduce nitrogen costs (as much as 85% of the N is available to future crops) while increasing yields and boosting fertility and bacterial life in the soil.
AC Greenfix averages 22-26% protein with 30% possible at bud stage. The solid stem and grassy leaves are extremely palatable with high relative feed value. Low bloat (comparable to sanfoin grass & birdsfoot trefoil) makes it easy to use with other feeds.

AC Greenfix is a moisture efficient plant with a strong indeterminate growth pattern and has been observed to be more frost tolerant than oats or barley.

AC Greenfix performs well alone or inter-seeded with other crops and is beneficial to deer and other wildlife.

AC Greenfix performs well until temperatures consistently hit the 90's and 100's.

Establishment
**DO NOT PLANT AC GREENFIX IN YOUR FIELD AFTER YOU HAVE HAD SOYBEANS THE YEAR BEFORE, THE CROP WILL NOT DO WELL!
Have a soil test completed prior to planting (the higher the pH the better-6-9).

You should also have a good phosphorous level for a healthy crop. It is also important to have P&K in the midrange and no nitrogen added.
For maximum growth, seeds need to be inoculated with a rhizobial inoculant that is commonly used to inoculate peas and lentils. Inoculants designated for alfalfas, clovers & soybeans will not be effective.

Inoculant should be purchased separately as seed needs to be inoculated right before planting. Store inoculant in area below 70 degrees and away from sunlight. Apply inoculant and mix thoroughly before seeding into damp ground.

Yields vary according to moisture and soil conditions and a soil test should be conducted.

Early spring planting will yield the best results (root development during cool spring weather will enable the plant to withstand stress later). Plants can tolerate temperatures as low as 22-26 degrees F and recommended soils temperature is 45 degrees.

AC Greenfix's large seed can be planted in the top 3 inches-planting depth should be determined by the available moisture and protection from freezing. Seeds should be covered by at least 1-2 inches of soil.
Use a regular grain drill or an air seeder. Avoid using equipment that may damage the seed. Since the seed is not round it could cause seed to chip, allowing infection by mold and other pathogens and thus reduce germination.

**Broadcasting is not recommended.
A minimum of 50-60 lbs/acre is recommended and in drier areas, 70 lbs/acre is desired.
Management
Do not wait until AC Greenfix makes pods before you mow it back or graze it-it will not grow back.
AC Greenfix grows slowly for the first 30-40 days.

For maximum nitrogen production, the plants should be soil incorporated before seedpods are filling and root nodule activity is greatly reduced. Nitrogen production will be reduced by removing forage, but sufficient to sustain a small grain or grass crop.
Seeds mature in about 90 days.

AC Greenfix withstands well under grazing, especially when mixed with grasses. Rotational grazing practices will allow for better regrowth. Yields will vary according to available moisture, soil conditions, and temperature. Average production has been 2000-5000 lbs/DM/Acre for one cutting. A second cutting is possible if temperatures remain moderate and moisture is available.

For organic growers, to control weeds early in the season, rotary mow, graze or cut this crop when it first starts to flower or during the first week of flowering. This will make the AC Greenfix tiller out faster and grow faster, thus resulting in a much better stand.

AC Greenfix forage will dry comparable to alfalfa or grass.

dbltree
01-12-2010, 01:43 PM
I just got a call from Welter Seed in regards to Groundhog Forage Radishes...across the nation these radishes have exploded in popularity with both livestockmen and by those planting them for deer forage!

AMPAC is the seed grower and their supplies for spring delivery have been exhausted until June so Welters was calling past customers like myself to give us first chance at what seed they had left in stock. I bought the last 23#'s they had and booked 50#'s for June delivery.

Most landowners planting for deer will need seed for July or September plantings so new seed will be available but Welters is encouraging everyone to just call and book your seed. Don't have to pay for it but just get on the list.

Here's the link to Welter Seed' GH seed...which is $2.65 a pound
Welter Seed - GH Radish (http://www.welterseed.com/ProductDetails.aspx?id=418)

They noted that customers have commented that their is a huge difference in GH and conventional oilseed radish in both forage and root development.

Another option is the Trophy brand radish available thru Cooper Seed although they are pricey at $6 a pound

Trophy Forage Radish (http://www.cooperseeds.com/pages/deer/fwindividual.html)

To my knowledge I know of no one who has planted either Groundhog or Trophy brand forage radishes and had deer refuse to eat them as often happens with other brassicas such as rape and turnips.

Certainly worth trying because of the many benefits both as a whitetail forage and soil improver so get on the list to try some forage radish in 2010...:)

HannibalBowhunter
01-12-2010, 02:21 PM
I'm on the 'List' - Thanks for the heads up!

HannibalBowhunter
01-13-2010, 11:12 AM
If I was planning to no-till brassicas what you recommend for fertilizer application? Is broadcasting it OK? Would it be better to do it at planting or after some growth is established?

dbltree
01-13-2010, 03:15 PM
If I was planning to no-till brassicas what you recommend for fertilizer application? Is broadcasting it OK? Would it be better to do it at planting or after some growth is established?

Nitrogen application without tillage is a tricky situation when using the most common form...urea. One must broadcast it on preferably within hours of a minimum of a 1/2" of rain or it will end up being lost to the atmosphere.

That being said if your going to no-till you might consider split applications of N with 1/2 being applied at planting and 1/2 at perhaps 30 days after germination.

Ammonium nitrate and ammonium sulfate are less volitile then urea and better options but they are more expensive and difficult to find in many areas. Worth checking on at your local ag supplier though...

dgallow
01-14-2010, 04:53 PM
That being said if your going to no-till you might consider split applications of N with 1/2 being applied at planting and 1/2 at perhaps 30 days after germination.

We used split applications of ammonium nitrate last fall and it worked really well for both topgrowth (10"+) and bulbs (up to softball size).

Local COOP had bagged AN last season, but he told me it would be strict bulk this year. We will just need to find a use for 500 lb! :way:

dbltree
01-14-2010, 05:14 PM
We used split applications of ammonium nitrate last fall and it worked really well for both topgrowth (10"+) and bulbs (up to softball size).

Local COOP had bagged AN last season, but he told me it would be strict bulk this year. We will just need to find a use for 500 lb! :way:

Your fortunate to be able to get it at all! AN is the ticket for no-till and top dressing for sure! :way:


My goal on these forums is to help landowners and managers learn how to grow high yielding forages that are also high in nutritive values while at the same time lowering their inputs by improving soils through a combination of crops and rotations.

We our fortunate to have all kinds of options that if planted properly, provide top quality forage and brassicas are one of those options. In this thread we have shared the use of three short season brassicas that include rape (canola), turnips and forage radish all of which have the potential to attract and feed deer well into late fall or early winter in most states.

Because many landowners are learning and eager to understand why they might wish to include brassicas in their habitat program perhaps we should go back to the beginning and compare the merits of each alone and in combination. Each brassica species has pros and cons and within each species are varieties with different qualities and a number of hybrids.

Which one is right for you? Do you need one, two or three species? Is it necessary to plant multiple varieties? What are each plants soil improving attributes if any?

Here are some thoughts to consider to help you better decide what might be best for you and your program.

The items in the quotes are from this link:
Brassicas for Forage (http://ohioline.osu.edu/agf-fact/0020.html)

Rape or canola is usually one of the first brassicas that deer will begin feeding on and seed is reasonable at $1 to 3 a pound. Rape can be used as a cover crop and if plowed under provide green manure but for most hunter/landowners this isn’t the reason we plant it nor a viable option. Rape does not have a long tap root so is generally not capable of breaking up hardpan nor does it have any ability to store nitrogen.

Rape is a short-season leafy brassica whose stems and leaves are ready to harvest (rotationally graze, strip graze or green chop) 90- 120 days after establishment. Plants develop a reddish tinge when ready for harvest. Rangi, Windall, Dwarf Essex, Winfred and Emerald varieties have performed satisfactorily in Penn State University trials. Leave a ten-inch stubble to facilitate rapid regrowth.

Rape leaves and stems have lower protein level (14-17%) than turnips. Rapes can attain yields of 8000 lb/acre dry matter if planted during May or June. Rape can be planted as late as August 1, but with lowered potential yield if planted late. Seed at 3-4 lb/acre rate.

Please note that yields are substantially reduced if planted after August 1st and rape typically will perform best if optimum levels of NPK are achieved at a planting. Rape is a higher nitrogen user so 60-90#’s per acre will greatly enhance both yield and quality of forage.

Turnips are often the last to be grazed until deer adapt to feeding on the turnip tops although many hybrids such as Appin and Pasja are more palatable and attractive. The positive attribute about turnips is the ability to grow a large bulbous root that deer will feed on long after other crops are gone. This in effect is “stockpiling” a food source that deer can take advantage of even after heavy snows.

Turnips do have a tap root that can extend down several feet but the bulk of the root is a softball sized bulb that often pushes itself out of the ground rather then drilling deeper. This lends itself perfectly to being an easy meal once severe weather kills the tops and in most cases deer will dig thru deep snows to reach this nutritious food source.

Turnips are short-season root brassicas that provide roots, stem and leaf growth for rotational grazing or strip grazing 70 to 90 days after seeding. The leaves can be grazed from mid- September until January depending upon critical low temperatures and snow cover. Top growth generally will survive temperatures between 15-20 degrees F, while bulbs will be about 5 degrees hardier. The common purple top garden type as well as Rondo, Royal Crown and other forage varieties, yield up to 7000 lb/acre of dry matter. The tops have 17-24% crude protein while roots contain 12-15% protein. Some new forage-type turnip varieties such as All Top produce relatively more top dry matter than roots. Turnips are seeded from mid July to mid August at rate of 2-3 lb/acre and produce maximum yields approximately 90 days after seeding

Again one must understand that planting after mid August begins to severely reduce yield and since the main attribute of turnips is root production, late plantings result in little or no root production.
Turnips are also heavy nitrogen users and just as with rape require 60-90#’s of nitrogen along with proper P&K levels or they will be short and stunted and lacking in the kind of protein levels we hope for.

Turnips do have the ability to bring up some subsoil nutrients but limited by their slender tap root and the round root does little to relieve soil compaction problems. Typically turnips would not be considered high on the list of soil improving crops but they can be an essential element as a late winter food source.

Forage radishes have been bred for root growth and forage production versus oilseed production and although they have been around awhile are relatively new to many landowners as a whitetail food source.
FR tops can be upwards of 20% protein and are quite possibly the highest on the palatablity list when it comes to brassicas. They can produce up to 8000#’s per acre of biomass and up to 3700#’s below ground in their root systems. The roots are also very high in protein but because much of it is below ground do not offer the late winter food source potential that turnips do.

FR are fast growing and can be planted from late July to early September and quickly begin to provide attractive forage lasting into early winter. FR like other brassicas also will produce higher yielding better quality forage is 60-90#’s of nitrogen is applied at a planting…depending on planting dates.
FR has some advantages in regards to the shape and size of its leaf in that it is more feathery or serrated rather then broad and flat such as with rape. Planted thick enough it will indeed canopy and smother competition but at lighter rates it lends itself better to being mixed with other brassicas or in fall cereal grain plantings.

Forage radish plants are unique in that their roots can grow 2-4 feet and tap roots as much as 8 feet deep allowing them to pull up subsoil nutrients from deep into the soil. “Drilling for nutrients is somewhat like drilling for oil; it does require some energy to find more energy and while radishes will grow with no added “energy” supplying them with nitrogen allows them to drill deeper into the soil.

The process of drilling or growing this long extended root creates a hole when the root decomposes and when combined in a planting will leave the soil mellow and loose the next spring. This allows the next crop to fully extend its own roots freely to reach water and nutrients rather then having its roots crammed up against a brick wall so to speak.
The root channels allow surface water to flow in and then freezing and thawing moves the soil much like a subsoiler on a tractor only with less energy required per acre.

All of that makes forage radishes very attractive but they have yet another unique attribute that also is lacking in other brassicas. The long tap root is able to capture and store nitrogen and while it does require some N to do the “drilling” it is then able to scavenge as much as 140#’s of nitrogen per acre that will be released the following spring for the next crop via the accumulated N.

All brassicas have allelopathic chemicals that can inhibit many small seeds from germinating but forage radishes are perhaps the strongest of all brassicas in that regard. In addition to reducing weed problems they also release biotoxic compounds that also suppress bacteria, fungi, insects and nematodes that can lower crop yields.

Kale and swedes are long season brassicas that are also attractive and useful in habitat programs but we’ll cover those another time.

Looking at the three aforementioned brassica species one can see that each has notable attributes that can make them very useful in attracting and holding whitetails in fall and early winter.

Each has pros and cons, rape has no root but it’s highly palatable and nutritious leaf makes it a great choice for early to late fall feed. It has few soil improving attributes and is a high nitrogen user.

Turnips are less attractive then rape but the roots make them a necessary component in a habitat program to provide late winter feed. It has some minor soil improving attributes and is also a high nitrogen user.
Forage radish leaves are extremely palatable and highly sought after by whitetails and do have some limited usefulness from the root that extends from the soil surface. It’s soil improving attributes are tremendous and for those with heavy clay soils it has the potential to make huge strides in ones soil and it’s ability to produce higher quality food sources for deer.
Unlike other brassicas forage radish has the added ability to capture and store nitrogen, re-releasing it to the next crop at no more more expense then that applied to rape and turnips.

Each of these three plants could be planted alone or in a mix that includes on or all three at seeding rates that are compatible with soil fertility, applied nutrients and grazing pressure. Some common sense and prudence is necessary and lighter seeding rates usually better then heavy.
Planting any of these brassicas to early will insure that they will mature and go to seed rendering them useless to whitetails and opening up a pandoras box of problems from volunteer plants the following year.
One variety of each is all that is needed but planting multiple varieties is sometimes fun and each has slightly different attributes that can help increase the overall effectiveness of your brassica plot.

Crops like clover, alfalfa and forage soybeans are some of the highest in protein and this is important for lactating does and antler development in bucks so they are usually better choices for spring and summer feed.
Brassicas however can tolerate colder temps and thus become a very important and valuable food source for late fall and early winter. Planting strips or blocks of brassicas, clover and fall cereal grains allows one to rotate crops and by following a tilled under legume such as clover, landowners can significantly reduce nitrogen inputs.

Utilizing nitrogen scavengers like forage radish and winter rye in your rotation allows nitrogen to be captured and used by the next crops while at the same time offering your whitetail herd attractive high quality forage.

If you feel brassicas have a place in your habitat program, look over the attributes of each and then decide which combination might work best for you, your deer and the soils on your land. :)

bowhuntr311
01-15-2010, 03:26 PM
.
Rapes can attain yields of 8000 lb/acre dry matter if planted during May or June.

Rape can be planted as late as August 1, but with lowered potential yield if planted late. Seed at 3-4 lb/acre rate.



So is there a reason that it is suggested to plant late July-Early Aug?

dbltree
01-16-2010, 08:09 AM
So is there a reason that it is suggested to plant late July-Early Aug?

There are different maturity dates just like with corn (for both rape and turnips) and the information provided in that quote was for grazing cattle and sheep. Livestockmen rotational graze rape so they can keep it from going to seed.

Deer hunters don't have that luxery!

2ndly since most of us mix rape and turnips, the turnips have a shorter maturity date so to make them work in conjunction they need to be planted about mid July.

The mose common rapes that hunters plant typically mature in 90 days and most turnips in 60-90 days so mid July is roughly the optimum date in the midwest.

Up your way June might be fine because cold weather no doubt comes several weeks earlier....;)

dbltree
01-21-2010, 09:57 AM
In regards to frost seeding clover into a dead brassica plot...here is an example of the conditions where I feel it will work better then others...

This plot is nothing more then bare dirt

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/01-19-10BrassicaPlot.jpg

Deer grazed it hard and heavy from the get go and then finally cleaned every last leaf from the plot

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Brassica1-1.jpg

The roots never had opportunity to grow and what was left they knawed off right to the dirt!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Brassica2-1.jpg

In this situation the allelopathic chemicals should be minimal at best and I believe that frost seeding will be successful. I will try both white and red clovers (seperately) to see if one or the other works better then others.

If either or both fail I will till the plots and plant berseem or crimson annual clovers and all clovers will be tilled under for a fall rye/pea mix...:)

Tickrancher
01-23-2010, 08:34 AM
I thought a few might enjoy the before and after photos of my first brassica plot. I started with a garden size plot of dwarf essex</ST1:p rape to see if the deer in my area would even eat it. Very cheap to plant! One bag of pelletized lime, one bag of 12-12-12 and some mail order seed from Welters. (I couldn’t find the seed locally.) It was planted like clover: Roundup, wait for the kill, fertilize, disk, cultipack, spread seed and cultipack again.

http://iowawhitetail.com/forum/picture.php?albumid=283&pictureid=2790

The deer didn’t touch it until the January cold and snow. Now many of the plants are down to stems.

http://iowawhitetail.com/forum/picture.php?albumid=283&pictureid=2789

I would think the plot would help the deer in some small way but I didn’t get a chance to hunt over the plot. Will the deer begin using it earlier next season? <O:p</O:p

shrek1
01-23-2010, 10:01 AM
Paul,

Thanks for the great update. Some very excellent points are made on all plants.


Tick rancher,

Great looking plot. More than likely they will hit it a bit sooner next year. You might want to start another small plot so that you can get into a rotation and not back to back brassicas. You can never have to many plots.:grin: You should still be able to enjoy shed hunting in and around that plot.

bowhuntr311
01-23-2010, 10:36 AM
Paul,

You should still be able to enjoy shed hunting in and around that plot.

Thats what i was thinking.

If you read through this thread there is discussion about not doing back to back brassicas due to possibilty of disease. If you can expand your plot, do the new half to brassicas and the old half to something else.

MK M GOBL
01-23-2010, 11:52 AM
Tickrancher, That is a great looking plot. What was the planting date?

Tickrancher
01-24-2010, 07:20 AM
Sprayed the Roundup in early July and planted August first. Any ideas for a test plot this year? I am considering sunflowers, cowpeas, soybeans or maybe milo. I already have a larger area in the Doubletree rotation of winter rye and clover.

dbltree
01-24-2010, 07:51 PM
. Any ideas for a test plot this year? I am considering sunflowers, cowpeas, soybeans or maybe milo. I already have a larger area in the Doubletree rotation of winter rye and clover.

Personally I have no use for sunflowers unless you have tons of ground and you just like the looks of them....that said, the others can be very attractive planted together or alone.

I'm going to plant milo this year simply because it is one of the few crops they usually won't touch until late fall, verus everything else that they mow to the ground before hunting season even starts.

I'll be posting in the Milo thread for those that are interested in seeing how it all works out...;)

dbltree
02-06-2010, 09:52 AM
Many plotters make the mistake of leaving their brassica plot empty the following spring when it could and should be growing a crop that starts feeding deer goes to work building soils and fixing nitrogen for the next crop.

Leaving any plot, field or soil bare and unused is not doing your deer and wildlife and favors and unwise soil stewardship, not to mention costing you money.

I've discussed multiple options in previous posts so I'll try to summarize some of the main options to make it easier for landowners to decide what might work best for them.

The following options are listed in pounds of seed per acre, cost per acre and appoximate nitrogen fixed and associated links to Welter Seed. One should always patronize your local seed source if possible but for some Welters may be your only choice.

Red Clover

Any red clover will work but Alta-Swede Mammoth Red Clover is the least expensive but yet most productive variety I am aware of. Sow at 10-15#'s per acre at an approximate cost of $20 an acre. Red Clover can be frost seeded but there is the risk of seeding failure due to the allelopathic chemicals in the brassicas.

The brassica plot can be tilled and oats and red clover planted together to provide a quick source of forage via the oats. Clip the oats off once the clover hets well started by early to mid June.

Red clover should fix 40-80#'s per acre over the length of a summer but up to 130 or more if allowed to grow a second year.

Alta-Swede Mammoth Red Clover - seed source (http://www.welterseed.com/ProductDetails.aspx?id=39)

Berseem Clover

Berseem clover is an annual clover that is often called the king of green manure crops and cannot be frost seeded. It is fast growing and often added to clover seed mixes because it will rapidly provide forage while other clovers are becoming established.

Sow berseem at 10-20#'s per acre at roughly $38 an acre, add oats as with red clover and clip them off later. Berseem should fix upwards of #100 of N per acre but be sure to keep it clipped if it sarts to flower or N fixation will end.

Berseem can be up to 28% crude protien making it a great spring/summer food source

Berseem Clover - seed source (http://www.welterseed.com/ProductDetails.aspx?id=332)

Crimson Clover

Crimson Clover is also an annual clover and frost seeding is not reccomended and like the aforementioned clovers oats can be added and clipped off or it can be planted alone at 20-30#'s per acre or roughly $32 an acre seeding costs.

Crimson is also high in protien and also will fix upwards of 100#'s of N by summers end.

Crimson Clover - seed source (http://www.welterseed.com/ProductDetails.aspx?id=375)

Greenfix Chickling Vetch

Greenfix Chickling Vetch is a great option where deer have not eaten the brassicas and there is concern that the allelopathic chemical content is high because larger seeds such as with vetch will be unaffected. Greenfix Chickling Vetch is also a great option where one must follow brassicas with brassicas and the growing season is short.

Greenfix Chickling Vetch can fix between 80-200#'s of N in only 60-70 days!! Most clovers can come no where near that in 2 months!! This vetch can be upwards of 30% protein and produce 2000-5000#'s DM per acre.

Sow Chickling Vetch at 50-70#'s per acre at roughly $50 an acre seed cost but be sure to cover seeds 1-2" deep and drill if possible as seeds can chip when broadcast. A hand seeder with plastic spreader will lower seed chipping and fracturing also.

Greenfix Chickling Vetch (http://www.welterseed.com/ProductDetails.aspx?id=389)

Other options include field peas, IC peas or buckwheat but the crops mentioned will provide the earliest forage to help hold deer on your property, build your soils and lower your fertilizer and herbicide inputs.
This is berseem and oats planted last spring and tilled under for a fall winter rye planting.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Cereal%20Grains/Oatsandberseem1.jpg

There are lot's of choices to fit almost every landowners needs when following brassicas so there is no excuse for leaving a plot bare and unproductive all summer... ;)

letemgrow
02-06-2010, 10:10 AM
Personally I have no use for sunflowers unless you have tons of ground and you just like the looks of them....that said, the others can be very attractive planted together or alone.


We planted a patch one year to shoot doves off of....man I wish there was a finch season, cause there had to be hundreds of those things on that plot. :D

dbltree
02-22-2010, 04:10 PM
It's late February and the snow keeps falling here in Iowa with no end in sight to the snow and cold weather so what do brassica plots look like now?

Remember the early fall strip plots where strips of brassicas (with a few volunteer oats) were alternated with strips of winter rye and peas?

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Viewofplotstrips.jpg

Well here is what they look like on 02/20/2010

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/WinterStripPlot.jpg

The snow churned and plowed by deer feeding on the turnips

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/02-20-10Brassica4.jpg

Scarcely an inch of snow untouched as they search out the tasty turnips

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/02-20-10Brassica7.jpg

Some landowners make the mistake of planting only forage rape and miss out on the late winter attraction that the turnips provide..

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/02-20-10Brassica.jpg

It's a mistake you see to only attract deer during hunting season because our endeavor should be to attract and HOLD whitetails ALL year long.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/02-20-10Brassica6.jpg

Turnips are an excellent way to help hold deer right on thru the winter

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/02-20-10Brassica5.jpg

and it's a simple matter to include them in your mid summer brassica planting!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/02-20-10Brassica3.jpg

Brassicas are only a small piece of the habitat puzzle but can be a very important one for most landowners....

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/02-20-10Brassica2.jpg

This is the mix I plant but it is just for reference and one can come up with your own favorite combination

Dwarf Essex Rape Seed 1#
Purple Top Turnips 1#
Appin forage turnip 1#
Barkant Forage Turnip 1#
Barnapoli Rape Seed 1/2#
Pasja Hybrid Brassica 1/2#
GroundHog Forage Radish 5#

Plant in mid to late July in most midwest states

Till ground, cultipack or firm soil, broadcast 5#'s per acre of brassica seed and re-cultipack.

Do NOT mix other crops with brassicas!

Use 60-90#'s of actual nitrogen (150-200#'s of urea per acre)

Hat Trick
02-22-2010, 04:32 PM
How are my Brassica plots? We had one week back in mid January where there was no snow. Before that time they had been digging all over the plots. After the snow melted there was hardly anything left...or so I thought. They continue to dig and dig and dig through the snow looking for anything. I will get some pics off the other computer when I get back up there again. Doesn't hurt that I found 2 matched sets and 6 of 8 sheds leading to or in the plots either :D

waylonb19
03-13-2010, 10:21 AM
Well the snow has melted and I have a plot full of turnips..haha I am really dissapointed in the activity in my brassicas last yr. I am wondering if they might still eat what is left of them this spring? I am also thinking about this yr. Since the deer didn't seem to hammer my brassicas am I better of planting something else this yr or put them back in and hope they will start hammering them the 2nd yr. I also am thinking of planting some clover in this plot this spring then till it under for the brassicas again come around August. I just hate to plant them again with such an average payoff as far as deer eating them goes last yr. So what do you think?

risto2351
03-13-2010, 10:30 AM
Deer have to acquire a taste for them Imo.

They do the same for me but they will hammer the neighbors.

I would plant clover in it now and plow it down this fall and either plant it

again this fall or put in a rye, oats, groundhog radish mix.

I try to rotate them every year.

Good luck in whatever you do.

dbltree
03-13-2010, 09:31 PM
Well the snow has melted and I have a plot full of turnips..haha I am really dissapointed in the activity in my brassicas last yr. I am wondering if they might still eat what is left of them this spring? I am also thinking about this yr. Since the deer didn't seem to hammer my brassicas am I better of planting something else this yr or put them back in and hope they will start hammering them the 2nd yr. I also am thinking of planting some clover in this plot this spring then till it under for the brassicas again come around August. I just hate to plant them again with such an average payoff as far as deer eating them goes last yr. So what do you think?

One thing I suggest to everyone is to avoid planting only one food source in any given plot. Divide your plots and plant 1/2 to brassicas and 1/2 to winter rye/peas and red clover (for instance) as Risto mentions this allows you to rotate crops but also brings deer into any given plot with different types of food sources.

If deer are attracted to the rye and peas they will eventually test out the brassicas and add Groundhog Forage Radish will encourage them further because it is even more palatable then rape and turnips.

The turnips will rot now and it's unlikely that deer will eat htme from this point forward sothe best bet is to work it up and plant an annual clover like crimson or berseem and then till that under for you next crops.

This summer plant 1/2 the plot to brassicas but consider planting the other 1/2 to a mix of winter rye, field or austrian winter peas, GH forage radish and red clover.

Pretty tough for deer to resist peas and rye and it will draw them in most of the winter regardless if they eat the brassicas or not...;)

dbltree
03-14-2010, 02:28 PM
One thing unique about planting short season brassicas (rape, turnips and forage radish) is that they can be planted in mid July to mid August at a time when we don't have to fight wet spring weather. This planting time frame also provides an opportunity to grow a legume during that time ahead of planting which in turn allows us to add soil humous and nitrogen. Clover then provides deer with a high quality food source rather then an empty plot.

Planting red clover with winter rye as the crop preceding the brassicas is one of the least expensive and most productive ways to accomplish this and the reason I encourage crop rotations between winter rye, peas, red clover and brassicas. That rotation builds soils, lowers the need for herbicides and fertilizers and when a plot is divided, these crops can provide the best of both every year.

Clovers should also be spring seeded into dead brassica plots rather then leaving it bare for the summer and preferably then rotated back to winter rye/peas and red clover.

I've discussed all of that previously of course and in the cereal grain threads I've shared information on how to get the most out of the legumes and that subject should be covered here as well.

70-85% of the nitrogen in a legume plant is in the leaves and plant itself, so while the roots do contain N, the upper part of the plant is the real "gold mine" so to speak. Killing the plant and leaving it on the soil surface allows most of the N to converted to ammonia and eventually lost to the atmosphere.

For that reason it's important to till the legume (such as clover or vetch) under as a whole plant and this is one time that plowing can be an effective way to fully trap all of the nutrients in the plants. Tilling or discing it under is the next best option although with smaller equipment landowners may need to mow the clover first and follow up quickly with tillage equipment.

It is also important NOT to allow the clover to flower and set seed as it will both stop fixing N and begin to dry out, losing the N contained in the plant itself. Inoculation of the seed at planting is also extremely important for best results, otherwise the clover or vetch will use the N in the soil and is likely to fix N less efficiently.

None of this has anything to do with brassicas themselves of course but as landowners go from a "plant stuff....shoot deer" way of thinking to a complete year around sustainable habitat program, they want to learn how to "fill in the blanks".

This link is very helpful in putting things into layman's terms to help landowners better understand the whole process.

Managing Cover Crops (http://www.sare.org/publications/covercrops/covercrops.pdf)

Knowledge of crop rotation, cover crops and the need to provide year around food sources will also help you understand why landowners need to get away from old habits of planting a plot to one crop.

Once you try dividing your plots and planting separate crops in each one you begin to see the advantages almost immediately and even more positive results over time due to lowered fertilizer and herbicide inputs.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/SDC12971.jpg

dbltree
03-22-2010, 12:34 AM
The following are just more links concerning the use of legumes as a source of nitrogen following or preceding brassicas (or crops like corn) and shows that clover (legumes) are just as beneficial in no-till situations as they are with tillage.

LEGUME COVER CROPS IN WISCONSIN (http://www.cias.wisc.edu/wicst/pubs/legume_seeding.htm)

Is tillage required for timely legume decomposition and nitrogen release under Wisconsin conditions? Wisconsin research indicates that tillage is probably not necessary for promoting sufficient legume nitrogen mineralization when corn follows alfalfa sod. Current UWEX recommendations for alfalfa nitrogen credits are not affected system.
In this situation, where alfalfa plants are three to six years old, several hundred pounds of nitrogen are available for mineralization. Even if only a portion of it mineralizes, it would be sufficient to meet the entire nitrogen needs of corn. This would not be the case with most green manures, which typically contain 100 to 200 lb nitrogen per acre in their biomass. Most of this nitrogen must be mineralized to prevent nitrogen deficiency in corn. A delay in mineralization would also lead to deficiency.

Decomposition and nitrogen release occurs very rapidly when legume residues are soil incorporated. Work in Wisconsin has shown half of a legume’s nitrogen is released as plant-available nitrogen within four weeks of being soil incorporated by chisel plowing. Contrary to popular belief, this rapid N release is possible without burying all of the legume residue. Thus, complete residue burying by moldboard plowing is not necessary, so a mulch tillage system is acceptable if soil conditions permit it.

What about no-till? Research from the southeastern United States clearly shows that legume residues left on the soil surface release nitrogen more slowly than incorporated residues. Legume residues left on the soil surface are more subject to environmental changes (temperature and moisture fluctuations), which affects the decomposition process

Cover Crops and Legumes (http://www.kansasruralcenter.org/publications/covercrops.pdf)

The portion of green-manure nitrogen provided to a
following crop is usually about 50-60% of the total
amount contained in the legume.

Approximately 40% of the plant tissue nitrogen becomes available the firstyear following a chemically burned, no-till legume mulch.
Approximately 60% of the tissue nitrogen is
released when the cover crop is incorporated as a green
manure rather than left on the surface as a mulch.
Lesser amounts are available the next two growing seasons,but increased yields are apparent.

Nutrients from decaying plant material are more readily available for use by succeeding crop plants than those nutrients derived from soil minerals or particles. During decomposition of organic matter, carbonic and other organic acids are formed. These organic acids react with insoluble mineral rocks and phosphates precipitates, releasing phosphates and exchangeable nutrients

Cover Crops and Legumes (http://www.wvu.edu/~agexten/ageng/Using_Crimson_Clover_to_Supply_Nitrogen_to_a_Silag e_Corn_Crop.pdf)

Crimson Clover Cover crop (http://www.mccc.msu.edu/documents/managingccprof/ManagingCoverCropsProfitably_crimsonclover.pdf)

Utilizing legumes for N supply can be sometimes confusing but one thing is certain...that the benefits are clear and using legumes in your brassica rotation to break the disease/pest cycle, build soils and furnish at all or a part of the crops N needs is just good managment....:)

dbltree
04-04-2010, 11:53 PM
On my farms there is not so much as a shred of evidence left that I ever planted brassicas but on a friends farm there are a number of "survivors"...

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Livebrassicas.jpg

The deep snow insulated them and hid them from deer

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Brassica1-2.jpg

Just another reason to til them up and plant clovers because these brassicas would mature and go to seed long before fall

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/4-1-2010.jpg

Volunteer brassicas can be very invasive like wild mustard and hard to get rid of but clover cover crops help eliminate that problem.... ;)

waylonb19
04-08-2010, 06:26 PM
My brassicas are growing back again. What would happen if you leave them? I am planning on tilling them under and planting clover but the area my plot is in is really wet right now. I might not be able to get in there till mid summer sometime. So if you leave the brassicas what happens. You said they will go to seed. What happens after that? Will they keep growing and be any good come late fall or winter? I figured they would of rotted out by now.

dbltree
04-09-2010, 10:27 AM
Will they keep growing and be any good come late fall or winter?

No....deer won't touch them at that point...;)

dbltree
04-14-2010, 10:20 AM
This pic from my brassica plot shows the string allelopathic affects of the brassicas...looks like a desert! :eek: :D

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Deadbrassicaatch.jpg

Leaving a plot bare like this all summer would be not only foolish but shameful! Our soils are not meant to be left bare and unproductive so in my case I tilled the plots under and planted berseem and crimson annual clovers.

I always rotate my plots/crops so last years brassica plots will be planted to winter rye and peas this fall and last years rye will be planted to brassicas this year. Annual clovers will provide a source of nitrogen for the rye and add thousands of pounds of biomass (organic matter) to the soil when I kill it to plant rye in late August.

The rye plots already have red clover planted in them from last fall and the same process will occur when I till those under for brassicas in July.

Instead of a bare dead brassica patch I will soon have some lush annual clovers to feed deer all summer and then take advantage of some free nutrients and improved soil tilth when I work in this source of green manure... ;)

dbltree
04-19-2010, 03:51 PM
Annual clovers don't really have anything to do with brassicas but then again they have everything to do with them when used as a cover crop to follow brassicas in the spring. In my case these annual clovers will be tilled under for winter rye and peas this fall and that allows the clovers to provide a lush source of high protein forage all summer and then a source of nitrogen for the fall rye and forage radish plots.

Just for fun I planted Berseem clover

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Clover/Annual%20Clovers/Berseem1.jpg

and Crimson Clover

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Clover/Annual%20Clovers/CrimsonClover4.jpg

along with chickling vetch

http://www.mccc.msu.edu/images/covercrops/ChicklingvetchAug2704.jpg

I also frost seeded red clover into some spent brassicas to see how they compare and see if there is any noticibale difference in any of these annuals as far as deer usuage or plot performance of crops following these annual cover crops.

We have a "stump" problem in one old pasture converted to food plots and after continually tearing up my tiller we decided to start plowing it first to either pull up the 3-6" stumps or at least mark them.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Equipment/Plowing.jpg

They have been there about 3-4 years now so many of them pulled up

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Equipment/Cedarroots.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Plowedground4-15-2010.jpg

I tilled the plowed ground, cultipacked, broadcast the seed and re-cultipacked to cover

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Clover/Annual%20Clovers/CIMG1017.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Clover/Annual%20Clovers/Annualcloverseeded.jpg

Various seeding rates and seed source can be found here:

Annual Clovers (http://www.welterseed.com/productItems.aspx?id=2&org=0)

and here

Chickling Vetch info (http://www.welterseed.com/ProductDetails.aspx?id=389)

I hope to encourage landowners to not have a one track mind and focus soely on one type of crop and worse yet only on a "kill" plot. Diversify your plantings to provide year around food sources, use annual cover crop species that will feed deer, improve soils and add free nitrogen to lower your costs.

Our whitetail/wildlife habitat should be like a spider web of crops, trees and native grasses that woven together provide all the intricate but essential components necessary to hold and harvest mature whitetails.

I'll be planting long season brassicas like swedes and kale very soon and exploring all the pros and cons of long seasons versus short season rape and turnips for those interested in that aspect of planting and growing brassicas for whitetails.... ;)

letemgrow
04-19-2010, 05:08 PM
I hope to encourage landowners to not have a one track mind and focus soely on one type of crop and worse yet only on a "kill" plot. Diversify your plantings to provide year around food sources, use annual cover crop species that will feed deer, improve soils and add free nitrogen to lower your costs.



All year round food will create better kill plots anyways IMO. The deer will be healthier which leads to bigger and better bucks and more deer :way:

letemgrow
04-19-2010, 05:14 PM
I have always frost seeded my clover, but for the incolulant, is it better to seed after the chance of frost or does it make any difference to the inoculant?

dbltree
04-19-2010, 07:22 PM
I have always frost seeded my clover, but for the incolulant, is it better to seed after the chance of frost or does it make any difference to the inoculant?

Frost seeding should not affect the inoculate Phil and that is also an excellent method of following brassicas with a legume. I did frost seed red clover in one strip of dead brassicas but in some cases where brassicas were uneaten they leave strong allelopathic chemicals behind that inhibit clover germination and in those cases I prefer to till them under and sow annual clovers.

If deer eat the brassics to the dirt then that's not usually much of a problem...;)

Critter
04-22-2010, 08:54 AM
Paul,
I've got about a 1/2 acre of ground I left untouched from a planting of winter rye from last summer. The rye is about a foot tall now. I'd like to plant some AWP and rye back in the same spot this summer, but am uncertain what to do with the ground now. Can I leave the rye grow and then use the tiller on it before I get ready to plant in August, or do I need to do something with it now to prevent any issues leaving it might create later for me?

dbltree
04-22-2010, 02:50 PM
Paul,
I've got about a 1/2 acre of ground I left untouched from a planting of winter rye from last summer. The rye is about a foot tall now. I'd like to plant some AWP and rye back in the same spot this summer, but am uncertain what to do with the ground now. Can I leave the rye grow and then use the tiller on it before I get ready to plant in August, or do I need to do something with it now to prevent any issues leaving it might create later for me?


I like to till it under and plant an annual clover for the summer but if that is not possible you can just leave it grow and work it up for a repeat of rye and peas.

The only problems are when you try to "till" mature rye because it will be long and stemmy and wind around a tiller. Easy to work in with a disc but not so much with a tiller.

In the future....add 10-12#'s or Alta-Swede Red Clover from Welters with your fall rye/pea planting, clip the rye off next May and allow the red clover to grow, feed your deer and fix nitrogen for the next rye crop.

Leaving a field in rye alone is kind of a waste because deer will not utilize it, it doesn't "fix" nitrogen and it is more difficult to work up...this is why I use red clover in the fall or annual clovers in the spring if at all possible.

Our property should feed and hold deer year around and our soil should be "working" for us by having the right crops planted that feed deer and our soil too....:way:

dbltree
05-01-2010, 07:59 AM
I planted a long season brassica mix yesterday but the mix has been changed somewhat and isn't exactly what I had in mind. They added too many short season varieties and it's high in Austrian Peas whereas I would prefer just swedes and kales.

The following is just a refresher on the difference between "short season" tape and turnips and "long season" kale and swedes...take note of the difference in maturity dates...;)

Turnips grow fast and can be grazed as early as 70 days after planting. They reach near maximum production levels in 80 to 90 days. The proportion of top growth to roots can vary from 90 percent tops/10 percent roots to 15 percent tops/85 percent roots. Some hybrids have fibrous roots that are not readily grazed by livestock. Turnips can be seeded any time from when soil temperature reaches 50o until 70 days prior to a killing frost. Some of the most promising varieties are Green Globe, York Globe, and Sirius.

Swedes, likes turnips, produce large edible roots. Swedes yield more than turnips but require 150 to 180 days to reach maximum production. Swedes usually produce a short stem but can have stems up to 2½ feet long when grown with tall crops which shade the swede. Swedes would generally be recommended for late summer seeding. Some of the most promising varieties are Calder and Sensation.

Rape is one of the best crops for fattening lambs and flushing ewes. Rape is a multi stemmed crop with fibrous roots. Stem height, diameter, and palatability vary with variety. Yield is maximized with a 180 day growth period for many varieties while most hybrids, on the other hand, produce greatest yields when allowed to grow 60 days before first harvest and 30 days before the second harvest. The most promising varieties are Rangi (which retains it leaves longer than most varieties), Fora, Wairoa, and the hybrid, Tyfon.

Kale varieties vary greatly in establishment characteristics, stem development, and time required to reach maturity. Stemless types reach a height of about 25 inches; the narrow stem types reach a height of 60 inches with primary stems up to 2 inches in diameter. Stemless kale reaches maturity in about 90 days, allowing a second harvest, while varieties that develop stems reach maturity in 150 to 180 days. The most promising varieties are Marrow-stem and Gruner.


All brassicas are heavy nitrogen users but long seasons are even heavier N users and usually require topdressing addtional nitrogen mid summer.
Long seasons also are susceptable to severe weed problems but grasses can be controlled with clethodim (Select or Arrow) and Dual II Magnum is supposed to be safe for pre-emergence weed control in brassicas as well.
I applied 200#'s of 46-0-0 urea and 200#'s 0f 6-24-24 per acre and 1 pint per acre of Dual II Magnum right after planting. I sowed about 5#'s per acre, cultipacked, broadcast seed and re-cultipacked to cover.

I'm hoping that because there are plenty of food sources all lush and plentiful that they will leave the kale and swedes alone for now but time will tell.

The mix I planted contains Winton Swedes and Maris Kestrel Kale among others


Winton is a new generation late maturing swede noted for high yield potential and excellent disease resistance. Winton reaches full maturity from 180 days. With high leaf yield and excellent animal preference.

Kestrel is a full maturity leafy kale variety with short stems (150-220 days to grazing). Kestrel was bred to have a low-fiber stem with high digestibility.


I bought my mix from Welter Seed
Long season mix (http://www.welterseed.com/ProductDetails.aspx?id=248)

Cooper Seed has them in individually

Cooper Seeds (http://www.cooperseeds.com/pages/deer/fwindividual.html)

Adams - Briscoe Seed Company (http://www.abseed.com/order.php)

Albert Lea Seed (http://www.alseed.com/) has forage kale seed

We'll see how the long seasons do on a couple different farms this year... ;)

dbltree
05-16-2010, 10:49 PM
I checked on the strip of long season brassicas (kale and swedes) I planted a while back

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/LongSeasonBrassicaplot5-15.jpg

and they are popping up nicely!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Kalenswedessprouting.jpg

I sprayed the plot with Dual II Magnum pre-emergence herbicide because planting anything in the spring is sure to invite weeds! So far this one is clean as a whistle however... ;)

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/SprayedwithDualII.jpg

I hope the lush strips of alfalfa and clover will keep them from murdering these 150 day brassicas but time will tell.

Dual II Magnum is $310 for a 2 1/2 gallon jug making it pretty pricey for small plotters unless you can split it with someone and for this reason usually short season brassicas (rape and turnips) are a better/easier option. Planted in mid July they rarely encounter the weed problems that early spring plantings do.

The long seasons do have to potential for higher yields of course and for some that may be reason enough to invest in some herbicide and fertilizer for a spring planting.

Dual II Magnum (http://www2.dupont.com/Crop_Protection/en_CA/assets/downloads/25729-20080821%20DUAL%20II%20Magnum%20E%20label.pdf)

Me-Too-Lachlor II (http://www.keystonepestsolutions.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=20&products_id=196) is a generic version for 1/2 the price but it isn't the same product either.

I have a couple more strips to put in on two more farms where I hope to compare the strips to adjacent strips of short seasons for comparison now that the "monsoons" have eased up in SE Iowa.... ;)

letemgrow
05-17-2010, 07:23 AM
Just got put on the list with Welter Seed for 50 pounds of groundhog radish and they are supposed to be in next week.

dbltree
05-17-2010, 11:32 AM
Just got put on the list with Welter Seed for 50 pounds of groundhog radish and they are supposed to be in next week.

Good idea Phil! That stuff is in hot demand now! :way:

letemgrow
05-17-2010, 12:12 PM
Good idea Phil! That stuff is in hot demand now! :way:


I want some for a food plot, but also want to do a little test. :D

Hopefully be able to scatter seed in the beanfield and see how that affects my corn production next year. :way:

dbltree
05-19-2010, 01:36 AM
I haven't had much success frost seeding clover into dead brassicas so this year I took 4 spent brassica strip plots and decided to conduct a test of sorts. I frost seeded one strip and tilled the other three planting one to berseem, one to crimson and one to chickling vetch...all of which will be used as cover crops and tilled under for a fall winter rye/pea/clover planting.

So far the one I frost seeded and left untilled has turned into somewhat of a mess as surviving brassicas began to re-grow and go to seed this spring.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/DSC01375.jpg

I can clip the plot to keep the plants from going to seed

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/DSC01374.jpg

but I just don't see a lot of red clover growing, largely I suspect because of the strong allelopathic affects from the remaining brassica plants

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/DSC01373.jpg

In places there are some clover plants but hardly the kind of thick cover crop one would expect.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/DSC01376.jpg

On the other hand the strips that I plowed under, tilled and planted to annual clovers or vetch are doing fine

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Cereal%20Grains/Cover%20Crops/AnnualClover5-14-2010.jpg

Berseem clover

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Cereal%20Grains/Cover%20Crops/Berseem5-15.jpg

Crimson Clover

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Cereal%20Grains/Cover%20Crops/Crimson5-15.jpg

and Chickling Vetch

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Cereal%20Grains/Cover%20Crops/DSC01365.jpg

Frost seeding clovers into dead brassica plots that are completely bare may work well but after trying it several times now I'm not real happy with the results versus tilling it under and planting.

I still have time to plant chickling vetch in the frost seeded plot so I'll probably do just that when I have time... ;)

dbltree
06-01-2010, 06:32 PM
May 30th update on the cover crops that I followed the spent brassicas with...growing like crazy!

Crimson Clover

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Cereal%20Grains/Cover%20Crops/CIMG1228.jpg

Berseem Clover

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Cereal%20Grains/Cover%20Crops/CIMG1226.jpg

Chickling Vetch

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Cereal%20Grains/Cover%20Crops/CIMG1230.jpg

All of those will be tilled under in late August for a winter rye/pea/clover planting and the winter rye/clover from last fall will be tilled under for brassicas in July.

View of the strip plots this time of year...

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Cereal%20Grains/Cover%20Crops/Atthe40.jpg

The lush new annual clovers are getting lot's of attention from both deer and turkeys versus none were the dead brassicas left barren all summer.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Cereal%20Grains/Cover%20Crops/CIMG1225.jpg

and the adjacent winter rye/clover combination is providing great cover and feed at the same time. The rye/clover I have tilled under was full of doe/fawn beds and hen turkeys will soon lead poults on foraging forays in the now blossoming clovers.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Cereal%20Grains/Cover%20Crops/CIMG1223.jpg

One can have a very diversified array of food and cover in even the smallest plots using strip or block plantings and rotating them year to year and doing so will benefit more then just your whitetails...;)

letemgrow
06-07-2010, 12:56 PM
Paul,

Whats the best way to plant the groundhog radishes?? Can they just be scatter seeded into a bean plot, or does it need to be worked up to get good seed/soil contact??

dbltree
06-07-2010, 01:05 PM
Paul,

Whats the best way to plant the groundhog radishes?? Can they just be scatter seeded into a bean plot, or does it need to be worked up to get good seed/soil contact??

Like most seeds germination is better if planted on a tilled surace and cultipacked to cover but GH radishes will germinate on the soil surface in standing soybeans with wnough water. Check Ampacs reference to that listed below....I'll be broadcating some with WR in my beans in late August. :way:

The heavy rains continue in my area of the midwest, averaging 2-5" of rain aweek for going on 6 weeks now! This is our third year in a row now of this kind of weather pattern and a reminder of why summer and fall plantings should be a major part of every landowners management plan.

July planted brassicas certainly fit well into that plan but I had hoped to do some spring planting of tillage radishes because they have a better chance of not being severely grazed this time of year and root development more pronounced.

The best I have done so far is get some Groundhog tillage radish seed planted in the garden Sunday afternoon.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/GHtillageradish.jpg

There are several tillage/forage radishes on the market but Groundhog is one of the few that has been developed as an improved tillage radish and is being used by farming operations on such a large scale that seed has been in high demand.

Farmers don't use inferior seed nor pay a premium for something that will not do "premium" work.

http://www.ampacseed.com/images/groundhog/ghoginhole550x733.jpg

Hunter landowners could do well to take a lesson from todays modern farmer and and search put the best improved seed at fair prices. Currently GH radish seed is being sold for prices in the $2.50-2.65 a pound range but of course there are those who put a "buck on the bag" or some reference to "deer" and charge 2-3 times as much so decide for yourself what seed will serve your purpose within your budget.

The only problem I have with GH radish is keeping deer from wiping them out before hunting season even on farms where they will not eat the usual brassicas(rape, turnips, kale and swedes). Root development wil vary widely depending on soil fertility and fertilizer inputs so like any crop it is not magic and will not put down 3 ft roots in poor soils with no nitrogen added.

The more N added the harder the radish will work and the more forage and root it will grow. I would also add that the "tillage" part actually comes after the fact, when the plant dies and decomposes leaving channels deep into the soil. Water flows in those channels and the freezing/thawing actions pulverize the packed soil so summer/fall plantings work better in that regard.

In time I expect other companies will bring other improved varieties on the market and make prices even more competitive but for now, if seed is priced over $3 a pound...I would consider a different source because you are being taken advantage of.

Ampac is the developer of GH radish:

GroundHog Tillage radish (http://www.ampacseed.com/groundhog.htm)

Search the Ampac dealer site for a dealer near you or Welter Seed will sell you GH seed by the pound which allows you to give it a try and see for yourself.

Welter Seed - GH tillage radish seed (http://www.welterseed.com/ProductDetails.aspx?id=418)

Try some with your brassicas or in a side by side strip and see what you think for yourself 5#'s will sow a 1/2 acre and even with a 3 dollar handling fee that is slightly over 16 bucks.

Someone is bound to try these radishes and find their deer won't eat them but I think across the country that will be the rare exception so if you try some please come back and let us know how you liked them... ;)

letemgrow
06-07-2010, 03:14 PM
If the rain keeps up at this rate, I will not have a choice but to spread the seeds and hope for more rain!!! :D

dbltree
06-08-2010, 06:59 AM
If the rain keeps up at this rate, I will not have a choice but to spread the seeds and hope for more rain!!! :D

2-3" more expected today here in SE IA and the fields are already saturated and then some, crops are drowning in the fields...not good!:(

dbltree
06-08-2010, 07:35 PM
2nd year in a row I have tried frost seeding red clover into a spent brassica plot to no avail, some folks have success doing this but the allelopathic chemicals seem to be to strong for it to work well.
Some of the brassicas re-grew

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/CIMG1319.jpg

and were going to seed, so I mowed the whole mess down!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/CIMG1318.jpg

Instead of that mess it could have looked like the plots I tilled and planted to annual clovers, clean and lush like this crimson clover!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Cereal%20Grains/Cover%20Crops/CIMG1336.jpg

If the rain would ever stop I would till it up and plant and annual clover or chickling vetch but sunshine is a scarce commodity in my neck of the woods..;)

waylonb19
06-09-2010, 08:15 PM
Whats a planting date on the GH radish? Is is about the same as brassicas? July/August? I might have to give some a test run. :D

dbltree
06-10-2010, 06:36 AM
Whats a planting date on the GH radish? Is is about the same as brassicas? July/August? I might have to give some a test run. :D

You can mix it with other brassicas in mid summer or add it to a winter rye planting in late Aug/early September...:way:

dbltree
06-13-2010, 07:17 PM
5 days after planting the little "Groundhogs" are popping up! :D

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Littlegroundhogradish.jpg

If I can keep the deer away from them perhaps we'll get to see what these babies can do... ;)

GroundHog Radish (http://www.ampacseed.com/groundhog.htm)

dbltree
06-14-2010, 03:30 PM
I plant this mix simply because I can pickup this seed from Welters in large enough quanities to avoid handling charges and they all have great attributes!

Dwarf Essex Rape Seed 1#
Purple Top Turnips 1#
Appin forage turnip 1#
Barkant Forage Turnip 1#
Barnapoli Rape Seed 1/2#
Pasja Hybrid Brassica 1/2#
GroundHog Forage Radish 5#


That being said however, certainly ALL of those are not required to plant a successful brassica plot that will be attractive to deer.

Everyone should plant a mix that includes both a rapeseed (canola) and a turnip although kale and kale hybrids can cetainly replace the rapeseed plants.

Dwarf Essex Rape has proven to be the very first brassica to be grazed in my side by side tests and it also happens to be the most economical brassica seed available. Deer will forage this brassica long before most turnip tops but the downside is that it has no late season attraction.

Turnips on the other hand provide both forage and roots with the latter being attractive well into late January.

DER and Purple Top turnips then become to old standbys that are readily available and very economical to plant. Brassicas are generally planted at roughly 5#'s per acre so I try to mix 1/2 and 1/2 in my overall mix.

If the improved forage brassicas are available they have do have some attributes that make them worth the slightly higher cost per pound and usually the forage turnips have leaves that are both more productive and palatable. It's important then to look at all aspects and what your goals and needs are when deciding what to plant.

There are many brassica mixes out there but I would be hesitant if the cost more then $5 a pound or $25 an acre for seed. Check also that a brassica mix does not contain clovers or cereal grains because they just don't grow well together and one will severely hinder the other.

Deer Creek Seed has a great mix for those folks up north and I have planted all of those on an individual basis.

DCS Wildlife Rape
Hunter Forage Brassica
Winfred Forage Brassica
Rangi Forage Brassica
Purple Top Turnip

If you have struggled to get deer to eat brassicas on your property consider planting a mix heavy in Groundhog Forage Radish and Dwarf Essex Rape and very lite on turnips and you may find you'll have better results.

When looking at commerical mixes at outdoor outlet stores, turn the bag over and look at the seed label on the back and see what your getting for the price. Sometimes it's a deal but often it's highway robbery. :eek:

If you are part of a QDM Co-op consider buying your brassica seed in bulk and then dividing it up at a given date when members can meet and pickup seed.

Brassicas can provide awesome forage but learn more about them and the various varieties and species before you deicide what might work best for you and your budget.... ;)

waylonb19
06-14-2010, 03:51 PM
I read someone say that Clopyralid is save to spray on brassicas to control broadleaf. I didn't think there was anything save to sray on them for broadleaf. I tried looking it up and only thing I came up with is its safe to spray on sugarbeets. Anyone know?

dbltree
06-14-2010, 08:29 PM
I read someone say that Clopyralid is save to spray on brassicas to control broadleaf. I didn't think there was anything save to sray on them for broadleaf. I tried looking it up and only thing I came up with is its safe to spray on sugarbeets. Anyone know?

Clopyralid is commonly sold under the brand name "Stinger" and it will control some broadleaves in brassicas.

Here's the label: Stinger herbicide label (http://www.cdms.net/ldat/ld02P014.pdf)

It's a little bit pricey but it might do the trick if you need it....:)

dbltree
06-15-2010, 10:44 AM
Ok...so what is the difference between "tillage" radish, "forage" radish and "oil seed" radish anyway????

Like silage corn and ear corn or alfalfa and grazing alfalfa....they are "the same only different!"

From this link: Radish names defined (http://www.tillageradish.com/pdfs/Radishnamesdefined.pdf)

Radish names defined

What’s in a name?

Radishes have become quite popular the past few years primarily because of consistent yield increases on crops that are planted the following year.

However there is confusion in the some farming circles- particularly in the Midwest about what kind of radish we are talking about. Tillage Radish, oilseed radish, and daikon radish are the most frequent names associated with Raphanus sativus, the scientific name for this species.

All these listed below are Raphanus sativus radishes with many different names associated with different uses. They are different when compared one with another. It’d be like using the generic term, “corn” to describe the many varieties of corn -sweet corn included.

Names for Raphanus sativus:

Forage radish- the name Dr. Ray Weil, University of Maryland, assigned to the Raphanus sativus selection he used in his research relating to cover crops.

Forage Radish is also used by those who use it for grazing. Dr, Weil will continue to use this term in order to be consistent with his research the past 8 years. But he is indeed using “tillage radish” seeds in current studies.

Tillage radishes are mentioned on an upcoming fact sheet from the University of Maryland.

Oilseed radish –As the name indicates these are Raphanus sativus selected for oilseed production, not root production. Seeding rate is sometimes double because of increased seed size.

Roots are less aggressive and the plants are generally harder to winterkill. There are namedvarieties of oilseed radish.

Daikon radish- a selection of Raphanus sativus used for human consumption.

Oilseed/daikon radish- confusing if this is really for oil seed or human consumption or something else.

Dichon/dicon radish- another name for daikon radish

Fodder radish-unspecified selection used as a cover crop

Field radish- unspecified selection used as a cover crop

Sprouting radish-Japanese use as sprouts in salads

Japanese radish-used for human consumption

Asian radish- used for human consumption

Chinese radish- used for human consumption

Tillage Radish- A trademarked name that describes the best selection of Raphanus sativus currently available for use as a soil conditioner and cover crop. Tillage Radishes are backed with 8 years of research at Cedar Meadow Farm in conjunction with the University of Maryland.

As you can see the terms "tillage" and "forage" are names coined during early research and they are essentially one in the same. Groundhog is just an improved variety no doubt from early progress made by Steve Groff of Cedar Meadows Farms and Dr. Ray Weil.

Cedar Medows Tillage Radish (http://www.cedarmeadowfarm.com/FarmResearch/ForageRadish.html)

Cedar Meadows Farm Field Day (http://www.rodaleinstitute.org/2006810/sullivan)

Forage Radish Fact Sheet (http://extension.umd.edu/publications/PDFs/FS824.pdf)

The key difference then between "oilseed" and the "forage/tillage" radish is of course the root because the oilseed version has been developed for "oilseed" production.

The "forage/tillage" versions were selected from the deep tap rooted varieties and improved varieties spawned from those. Since they were originally being used for grazing they were called "forage" radishes and then research on their usefulness as cover crops and then for breaking up soil compaction brought on the term "tillage".

Even though one may desire only grazing or only soil tillage the Groundhog version fulfills both needs equally well and no doubt other improved varieties will follow....:)

dbltree
06-18-2010, 06:34 AM
There is I think, no bigger culprit in the hunting/land management world then seed companies when it comes to spreading lies thru deceitful and often completely false information.

Buck Forage Oats is at the top of the list and for several years now they have been paying Dr. Kroll to literally lie to unsuspecting landowners to get people to buy their very over priced and unproductive product.
In regards to brassicas Dr. Kroll quotes 30 year old toxicity information that is not only rare but also ONLY a problem where livestock are fenced in and forced to eat ONLY brassicas.

Deer of course are free roaming and eat all other types of browse so there has NEVER been a known case of a single deer EVER becoming ill from eating brassicas.

Dr. Kroll is in effect lieing to each and every one of you and using his status to do so for no other reason then greed...something that seems to be rampant these days.

Ampac Seed has recently issued an article that includes comments on this subject from Ed Spin, someone who most of you know and respect. I urge you to read the article (page down...it's a newsletter) and understand the truth.

Article on brassica toxicity - the truth (http://www.ampacseed.com/pdfs/newsletters/Impact0410.pdf)

I don't sell seed and I is not important to me that you plant brassicas or not, what is important is that each of you are aware of the truth and make managment decisions based on facts rather then lies....;)

HannibalBowhunter
06-18-2010, 04:56 PM
Paul,

I had a couple of questions for you. You responded to my post on QDMA about getting rid of my rye. Well, I just got done cultipacking the rye. It worked great - now I have a a big field that looks like it needs to be baled. It is pretty thick in some places. You were saying that I could just overseed my brassicas into this "mulch" next month. Is that right? What about my cereal grain mix? I tried to use my disk on the rye and all it did was make a big haybale out of my disk. What should I do? Also, the portion of the field that I frostseeded with clover is still standing tall (just starting to bend over). I am concerned that as the rye falls over it will shade out/smother my clover. Help! I am going to make sure I clip off my rye next year!:D

dbltree
06-18-2010, 07:35 PM
Paul,

I had a couple of questions for you. You responded to my post on QDMA about getting rid of my rye. Well, I just got done cultipacking the rye. It worked great - now I have a a big field that looks like it needs to be baled. It is pretty thick in some places. You were saying that I could just overseed my brassicas into this "mulch" next month. Is that right? What about my cereal grain mix? I tried to use my disk on the rye and all it did was make a big haybale out of my disk. What should I do? Also, the portion of the field that I frostseeded with clover is still standing tall (just starting to bend over). I am concerned that as the rye falls over it will shade out/smother my clover. Help! I am going to make sure I clip off my rye next year!:D

The problem is that your tyring to work with it at the most difficult stage, been there done that too! :rolleyes:

With small equipment we want to deal with rye very early by either spraying, mowing or tilling....or....waiting until it's mature and dry.

It won't smother the clover...it will just "fade" away like this:

http://img202.imageshack.us/img202/5672/juneclover34of.jpg


You'll see how much easier it is to deal with rye when it drys down and turns to straw, it's entirely different then when it's green and "wirey"

Now that you have knocked the rye down it should be easy to disc it a little in a few weeks to plant brassicas. No need to do much more then scatch it up a bit, broadcast the brassica seed and cultipack it.

When you do the cereals later on, it should be even easier cause the rye started to decompose somewhat.

For now...just leave it lay and the stuff with clover, just leave it and don't worry about it for now...it's not as bad as it looks....:D

HannibalBowhunter
06-18-2010, 09:10 PM
Thanks. You make it all sound so easy:D

HannibalBowhunter
06-18-2010, 09:47 PM
Because I know you like pictures: Here is my rye after today.

http://i959.photobucket.com/albums/ae73/drsfriedersdorf/P1010007.jpg

http://i959.photobucket.com/albums/ae73/drsfriedersdorf/P1010008.jpg

dbltree
06-19-2010, 05:20 PM
Holy Cats! You were not kiddin' when you said it was thick! Gieesh! :eek: :D

I bet you could almost broadcast brassica seed right into that straw and never even disc it! I'm going to post more on this in the cereal grain thread but farmers are "Rolling Rye" more and more these days!

http://www.farmanddairy.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/11/rollerinrye1216-1web.jpg

Here's a link to an article on the subject:

Rolling Rye (http://www.farmanddairy.com/news/roller-in-the-rye-managing-cover-crops-with-rolling-and-crimping-techniques/10536.html)

dbltree
06-20-2010, 12:41 PM
Groundhog forage/tillage radish at 14 days

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/GHforageradish14days.jpg

I planted these solely to test growth rates of both foliage and roots but normal planting times would be mid to late July with other brassicas or in late August or September with cereal grains.

Optimim root growth is probably most attainable with mid to late summer plantings but GH radishes are very fast growing and plenty of grazing can be achieved by planting the end of August roughly 6 weeks before average first frost dates.

Unlike other brassicas that have broad leaves that form a shading type of canopy, forage radish has a feathery type leaf that makes it more compatible to plant at lower rates with cereal grains in the fall. At higher rates of 10#'s per acre it's best to plant it alone because the leaves will still form a dense canopy at those rates.

I ordered Tillage radish seed thru Albert Lea Seed but Albert Lea MN was hit with some deadly tornados that may have delayed shipping. When it does arrive I will plant both GH and Tillage again side by side and post weekly pics of growth using a ruler to show heights. :way:

HannibalBowhunter
06-20-2010, 10:12 PM
So, if I broadcast my brassica seed on the straw I obviously could not till in my urea. Could I topdress it then? At planting or down the road?

dbltree
06-21-2010, 11:44 AM
So, if I broadcast my brassica seed on the straw I obviously could not till in my urea. Could I topdress it then? At planting or down the road?


I would split the urea application if you can, 1/2 at planting and 1/2 at about 30 days perhaps.

As always spread urea within 24 hours of a 1/2 inch of rain...:way:

dbltree
06-22-2010, 09:21 PM
June 22, 2010

I recieved the Tillage brand radish seed from Albert Lea Seed House so I planted both Tillage and Groundhog brand radish seed side by side tonight. It is interesting to note that despite being a trademarked "brand" the seed is marked "VNS", origin in NZ.... ;)

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/CIMG1430.jpg

I added urea, all by hand of course but equal amounts as best I could and I also broadcasted some of each in our previously tilled but never planted garden. When I planted the earlier GH radish I had broadcasted some seed into the garden and it looks like it all came up!

We have had daily rains that include as much as 2" at a time so that is a big difference between that and overseeding in late summer when rains are less frequent, still with decent rainfall overseeding radish seed can work well.

The Groundhog brand radish that I planted a few weeks ago is growing like mad so I'll give weekly updates on growth of the first planting and the comparitive planting of Tillage and Groundhog and see how they pan out....:way:

jmm46
06-23-2010, 12:58 PM
So would it be possible to do the same to tall grass, spray it so it dies, then flatten it or just broadcast the purple top turnips and Dwarf Essex rape into it??

dbltree
06-23-2010, 08:21 PM
So would it be possible to do the same to tall grass, spray it so it dies, then flatten it or just broadcast the purple top turnips and Dwarf Essex rape into it??

You bet...but again, remember that brassicas love nitrogen so you need to be able to broadcast urea sometimes after seeding and get it on just before a minimum 1/2" of rain.

Tillage takes the "chance" out of the equation but otherwise your idea can and has worked well...:way:

dbltree
06-27-2010, 06:46 PM
June 27, 2010

Groundhog Radish at 5 days

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Littlegroundhogradish.jpg

14 days

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/GHforageradish14days.jpg

21 days...now by golly that's some fast growth!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0018.jpg

I'll keep posting progress along with the second planting of GH and Tillage radish that so far appear identical at 5 days old

Groundhog at 5 days

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0019.jpg

Tillage at 5 days

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0021.jpg

This is seed that I broadcasted on top in the garden, obviously slower then seed that was covered and had better soil seed contact.

Groundhog

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0025.jpg

Tillage

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0026.jpg

After planting/broadcasting the above seeds we have had 2" of rain over several days and very warm humid temps, so results obviously would not be the same on dry soils with little or no rainfall.

What I am curious to see is how the plants will develop compared to those that were "planted"

These are some GH radishes that I had broadcasted at 21 days that are only slightly behind the "planted" seeds

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0007.jpg

I hope to determine when they will reach "maturity" to know how soon is to soon as far as a planting date that will still leave them palatable for fall. All the ones I planted in July and late August last year were mowed to the ground long before they had a chance to mature.

They were all eaten before a frost and were eaten where they hadn't eaten other brassicas. Based on these growth pics you can see how it is possible to add them to a winter rye planting Sept 1st and have tremendous growth before frosts in early October.

Growth of course is dependant on nitrogen, soils, precipition and of course grazing pressure so everyone may see varying results... ;)

Sligh1
06-27-2010, 08:38 PM
So, are you saying you're planting them AROUND Sept 1st? When is the earliest you feel comfortable planting and when's the latest??

I'm trying Ground hog Radishes for 1st time this year. Say as a stand alone OR in a mix with rye or maybe oats - how many acres would you like to plant (for example, I try to do beans at a minimum of 4 acres so deer don't destroy them)- what acreage amount minimum would you feel really comfortable with?

would you feel ok mixing with a low to medium seeding of Jerry Oats or would the oats be too competitive for radishes???

Other than rye (and maybe oats) what other mix in's would you do (winter peas, purple top turnips, etc?)

*sorry for the 20 questions! :)

dbltree
06-28-2010, 06:36 AM
So, are you saying you're planting them AROUND Sept 1st? When is the earliest you feel comfortable planting and when's the latest??

I'm trying Ground hog Radishes for 1st time this year. Say as a stand alone OR in a mix with rye or maybe oats - how many acres would you like to plant (for example, I try to do beans at a minimum of 4 acres so deer don't destroy them)- what acreage amount minimum would you feel really comfortable with?

would you feel ok mixing with a low to medium seeding of Jerry Oats or would the oats be too competitive for radishes???

Other than rye (and maybe oats) what other mix in's would you do (winter peas, purple top turnips, etc?)

*sorry for the 20 questions! :)


So far I know that anywhere from mid July to early September will work as far as planting dates. Since the pics I posted show tremendous growth in only 3 weeks, early September is not to late.

No idea how many it would take...much less on your place then mine because your able to grow more feed then I and have more ag crops near by.

All of mine have been in a mix with either other brassicas in July or winter rye/oats/peas in late August. Plant radish at 10#'s per acre alone but 5#'s in a mix.

Normally I don't reccomend planting brassicas with cereals because they have broad leaves that canopy and they compete by shading. The forage rdish has a more feathery leaf that is not quite so competitive so at 5#'s per are in a mix with rye or oats it works quite well.

You can also overseed the forage radish into standing soybeans in late August as they start to turn along with Winter Rye.

Look back thru the cereal grain thread and you'll see the ones I mixed with rye and how they grubbed them to the ground...:way:

risto2351
07-02-2010, 09:08 AM
Buddy has a lot of volunteer turnips growing from last year. Evidently the tops were eaten only but they are still flowering. He is just wondering if he should replant or leave for this year?

dbltree
07-02-2010, 09:27 AM
Buddy has a lot of volunteer turnips growing from last year. Evidently the tops were eaten only but they are still flowering. He is just wondering if he should replant or leave for this year?

From what I have seen it's a little like volunteer corn...it doesn't amount to much and usually becames more like a weed then a crop. I always till it up and replant and remember to avoid planting too many years in a row in the same spot.

Rotate crops...especially brassicas and it works best to till up the spent brassica plot in the spring and plant some clover (like berseem) or buckwheat for the summer.

Leaving that "mess" there to go to seed does nothing for his deer, for his soil or his budget. Always plant a cover crop that will break the disease cycle, fix nitrogen and feed deer until replanting....;)

risto2351
07-02-2010, 09:55 AM
Thanks Paul.

I thought so but have never encountered that problem because I rotate mine like you mentioned.
Hope you have a great holiday.

dbltree
07-04-2010, 01:00 PM
July 4th 2010

One thing for certain...no frost required to "sweeten" Groundhog radishes...

Not even a month since planting they are working these GH radishes over

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/GrazedGH.jpg

So far they have left the ones in the raised bed alone and they look like this at 28 days giving one an idea of growth if planted Sept 1st with winter rye for instance.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/GhRadish30days.jpg

The GH and Tillage tests so far reveal no difference in growth
Groundhog at 12 days

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/GhRadish.jpg

Tillage at 12 days

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/Tillageradish.jpg

We have not had a drop of rain since June 27th so I watered the test plants but did not provide supplemental water for the plants in the garden. The soil has plenty of moisture so the established plants were unphased but the seed broadcasted on the bare soil germinated and then perished in the hot summer sun.

Any overseeded seeds either need continual moisture or the canopy of a crop such as beans to preserve soil moisture until seeds established roots...something to be aware of.... ;)

dbltree
07-05-2010, 02:59 PM
I decided on the following for my brasica mix this year:



5# Ground Hog Radish
1# Barnapoli Rape Seed
1# Barkant Forage turnip
1# Appin forage turnip
1# Pasja Hybrid Brassica

I have one spot in mind where so far deer have refused to touch anything but the GH forage/tillage radish so it seems like a great place to test the actual growth of turnips themselves. I'll plant them indivually in that spot and see how they stack up?

I usually include two types of rape but since deer seem to love the forage radish I'm going to go heavier on the radishes and a little lighter with the rape (canola).

The turnip types I chose are forage types that deer find the tops a little more palatable (perhaps not a good thing on my place!) so I'd like to see how they stack up individually this fall.

Testing varieties is something any landowner can do and see which one performs better or if there is little difference but so far in all the years I have grown brassicas one common theme has stood out...either deer love them all or hate them all regardless of brand or variety, the only exception being the forage radish...so far no deer seems able to resist them at my place... ;)

dbltree
07-09-2010, 02:29 AM
Mike sent me this pic of deer feeding in his brassica patch mid winter...a great reminder of why you need to include turnips alone with rape varieties for late winter food sources.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Deer%20in%20brassicas/DeerinBrassicasinWI.jpg

Now you know why Mike uses the handle "deerwatcher".... ;)

dbltree
07-15-2010, 09:38 AM
Do Barkant & Appin create a sizable bulb?
Yes they do, the only advantage over the Purple Tops is that the leaves are more palatable so they provide more grazing.

I actually used 3# purple top, 1.5 # Winfred,1 #Rangi and 1#Dwarf Essex in that mix. That is the plot they hit right after all the beans, sugar beets and corn were pretty much wiped out. The straight purple top plot was the last they hit. I like the Winfred in my mixes a little more than others; I get great leaf size

That's a great mix and it obviously worked well! Thanks for sharing the pic with us Mike! :)

On another note I would add that for most of the midwest and northern areas, mid July is the perfect time to plant a brassica plot.

Here are a few things to remember...

Plant 5#'s per acre...seed is tiny so use the smallest setting

Use a bare minimum of 100#'s of urea and 150-200#'s will produce better results

If soil fertility is low, add 200-400#'s of 6-24-24 (or something close to that)

Till soil, broadcast fertilizer, till it in, cultipack, broadcast seed and re-cultipack to cover

Normally weeds are not a problem this time of year (as they would be in the spring) but if you have a problem spray 6-8 ounces of clethodim and one quart of crop oil per acre to kill any and all grasses without harm to the brassicas.

If broadleaf weeds invade...use Stinger or Garrison herbicides

Check the herbicide thread for more information and labels etc.

Usually if grasses were killed previously with glyphosate then the brassicas will be dense enough to out compete weeds but cool wet weather can cause problems....;)

dbltree
07-17-2010, 07:07 AM
Eatin' dust and snortin' dsl smoke! Farmin' for fun sure beats a day at the office!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Farmin/CIMG1511.jpg

Burnin' daylight so I better get at it again today! :way:

dbltree
07-18-2010, 08:56 AM
Deerwatcher got his brassica plot ready by first nuking it with gly

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/MikeslateJulycorn.jpg

Then he ran his two tooth subsoiler over it....sweet!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/MikesSubsoiler.jpg

I suspect he has it all planted by now but the subsoiler left it looking like this

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/MikesBrassicaplot.jpg

Any type of heavy soils can stand some subsoiling now and then to break up hardpans and allow moisture to drain in instead of off. The channels also allow roots to penetrate deep into the subsoil for locked up nutrients.
Groundhog tillage radish can do much the same thing and Mike has some radish seed going into this plot along with his brassicas.... ;)

dbltree
07-18-2010, 02:19 PM
Brassica seed is tiny and I don't mean maybe! It's so tiny it's difficult to be certain of coverage and most of us tend to think we haven't put enough on. That leads to overseeding and stunted brassicas so here's a few thoughts that might prove helpful when broadcasting seed by hand rather then drilling.

Rape and turnip seeds...

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0010.jpg

Forage radish seeds...

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0011.jpg

We always want to cultipack first to firm the soil because otherwise it's terribly easy to bury the seed to deep....can you see the turnip seed in this pic??

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/TurnipSeed.jpg

Radish seed is slightly larger and a bit easier to see

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/GHRadishseed.jpg

I carry a few tools with me to insure that I only put the exact amount in the bag to cover the area to be seeded. I use a small scales that can weigh up to 2#'s of seed and a small pocket calculater along with a coffee can for dipping seed and in this case a bucket of mixed Pasja, Appin, Barkant turnips and Barnapoli Rape Seed and a seperate bucket of Ground Hog Forage radish.

I sowed 5#'s the rape/turnip mix and 5#'s of radish seed but if you budget will not allow heavy applications of nitrogen....cut those rates by 30-50%

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0009.jpg

I also carry my Nikon 800 range finder and since I am dealing mostly in strips I range the end of the field and pace off the width of the strip.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0003.jpg

In this case the strips were all 150 yards long X 3 = 450' and they varied in width from 24 - 50 ft. An example then is 450' X 30' = 13500 square feet. 31% of 43,560 (square ft per acre) is roughly 13,500. I try to sow turnip and rape seed at 5#'s per acre so 31% of 5#'s is 1.55 so I can easily weigh out roughly a pound and a 1/2 and now with certainty that I have exactly the right amount of seed for that strip.

If I have a little left over I go back over the strip til it's gone but if the bag is full of seed it removes the temptation to put a LOT more on thinking I mave have not put on enough.

Even at that....how do you know what setting to put your seeder on??
In this case because the Groundhog Forage radish is slightly larger seed, I used it to set the opening.

A few seeds placed in the bag allow you to open the gate until the seeds can just pass thru...

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0015.jpg

The set the stop for the gate which on my Earthway spreader is roughly 1.5

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0017.jpg

After sowing one strip I then have confidence that I applied the correct amount of seed...had I run out or had twice too much I would have needed to make further adjustments but that setting (that just barely allows seeds to pass thru) worked perfectly.

Each strip or block was slightly different but I could quickly pace off the width and weigh out the exact amount of seed in moments. One the seeder is set of course weighing out each field or plot might not be necessary but I feel more comfortable knowing that I have a precise amount of seed with no guesswork.

Previous to seeding I had applied fertilizer and tilled it in, a soil test can takes some guess work out but brassicas tend to require at least 75#'s of nitrogen and 40 pounds of P2O5 and 80 pounds of K2O. On my friend Walt's place we used 400#'s of triple 19 to ensure we had 80#'s of each.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/CIMG1504.jpg

On my own farm where P&K levels have been maintained but grazing pressure is intense I used 200#'s of 46-0-0 urea and 200#'s of 6-24-24 per acre. I had smaller strips so I applied the fertilizer with my bag seeder using the same calculations as for the seed. I didn't weigh it out but if I needed 44#'s I left a few pounds in the bag or if I needed 70#'s I used a bag and a 1/2. I opened the gate all the way and walked at a good clip and got pretty even and accurate coverage.

The importance of cultipackers when sowing brassicas cannot be over emphasised if you can get ahold of one. Walt's is a 4 footer and is slightly narrower then my 60" tiller.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/CIMG1509.jpg

Mine is 6' so it covers my wheel tracks well. Note my finely engineered, redneck approved hitch! :p

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Cultipacker.jpg

Mike on the otherhand is a classier plotter and has a neat 3 pt hitch packer that also does a beautiful job!:way:

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/MikesCultipacker.jpg

I pull the packer behind the tiller when tilling in the fertilizer so it's ready to sow seed, then broadcast seed and re-pack.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0034.jpg

One advantage of strip plotting is that deer always have food sources even while the brassicas are growing. Here you can see the white and red clover that was planted last fall with winter rye that is not only feeding deer but fixing nitrogen at the same time.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/CIMG1512.jpg

On the other side of the planted brassicas is a white clover strip that will remain in clover for several years. We just keep rotating each year...brassicas where rye and clover was and rye and clover where brassicas were. It's a no brainer method of having all your favorite food sources in one field every year without planting them in the same spot, thus controlling pests and disease.

At the end of the day it's nice to look back on a job well done....this morning we got 2 1/2" of rain! Thank you God!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Endoftheday-1.jpg

and dream about those big boys munching on turnips in December...

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Deer%20in%20brassicas/1buck4Turnip.jpg

Plenty of time to get brassicas planted if you haven't already!:)

dbltree
07-20-2010, 08:41 AM
Often we end up with some left over seed each year and if kept stored in a dry place, most seed keeps well. It's easy to do a ragdoll test the following planting season by wrapping some seed up in a moist paper towel and then counting the germinated seeds to give you a % of germination.

My friend Jordon shared this pic on Outreach of some 2 year old rape and turnip seed after only 24 hours! Obviously the seed is still good and he can expect a great crop.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v461/iowadeerhunter/101_3867.jpg

Some seeds take a while to actually germinate so don't wait til the night before you plant to check germination and keep your leftover seeds in a bucket or tote with a tight sealing lid for use next year....;)

dbltree
07-20-2010, 06:23 PM
July 20th Forage radish growth update

GroundHog Radish at 45 days

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0017.jpg

Strong robust growth with beautiful leaves.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0018-1.jpg

With plenty of nitrogen and copious amount of water it appears most of the growth is in the leaves although I have not pulled up a root yet.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0022.jpg

The Tillage/Trophy versus GroundHog radish at 28 days

GroundHog (Trademark name)

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0021-1.jpg

Tillage/Trophy (Trademark names)

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0019-1.jpg

Virtually no discernable difference and since all of these are Variety Not Stated (VNS) seeds contract grown by growers in NZ, it's no surprise. The only obvious difference is in the price of the seeds with fair market price being in the $2.50-3.00 a pound range.

Pennington Seeds has purchased the Trophy brand (Trademark name only) but beware if the price is above the fair market value because it is all the same seed with virtually no difference that might substantiate a higher price .... ;)

GroundHog Radish seed source (http://welterseed.com/ProductDetails.aspx?id=418)

Tillage Radish seed source (http://www.alseed.com/) (open catalog)

I added GH radish at 5#'s per acre to my brassica mix for the second year in a row now and I will once again also add 5#'s per acre to my winter rye/pea fall mix because deer readily lapped them up regardless of when or where I planted them... :way:

dbltree
07-22-2010, 05:32 PM
The little baby brassicas are popping up after only 5 days!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Brassicas5days.jpg

8" of rain and 93 degree temps may have had something to do with it!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Brassicas5daysold.jpg

Warm wet soils can cause nitrification to occur a little faster then usual, especially in sandy soils but I hope the combination of clovers and alfalfas I tilled under along with heavy amounts of urea will keep these babies happy!

Denitrification is also a probem in warm water logged soils and this link is helpful in understanding more about nitrogen.

Understanding Nitrogen in Soils (http://www.extension.umn.edu/distribution/cropsystems/DC3770.html)

Brassicas need plenty of nitrogen and no competition from weeds or other crops to produce great quality, high yielding forage so make sure you till in 100-200#'s of urea at planting for best results... ;)

dbltree
07-23-2010, 11:23 AM
I tilled under some beautiful white clover to plant some test samples of brassicas. The clover was planted last fall with winter rye and now I am "subdividing" the plots so that by fall each plot will have 1/3 clover, 1/3 brassicas and 1/3 winter rye/oats/peas/radish and more clover. Very easy to have all of these things in even the smallest garden sized plot!

The ground was still a little on the damp side so I made a pass thru 4 different clover plots last night to let it air out a little. There are different white clovers planted in each case, all have done well and all are capable of fixing upwards of 200#'s of nitrogen per acre.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0001.jpg

Earlier in the winter rye thread I had shredded the dried rye straw and now the combination of clover and straw makes a delightful rich organic matter!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0002.jpg

I added 200#'s of urea and 300#'s of 6-24-24...

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0003-1.jpg

and stirred everything in well to keep building the kind of soils crops thrive in!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0005.jpg

I pulled the cultipacker behind on the last pass to have a firm soil bed to broadcast the tiny brassica seeds into.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0004.jpg

I planted two different strips with individual plantings of Purple Top, Appin, Barkant, and Pasja Turnips, Dwarf Essex Rape and Barnapoli Rape, GroundHog, Tillage and Oil Seed Radish. I planted the ends to a mix because often the ends get grazed or exposed to drying winds etc. so I hope to have so good pictures of each individual variety or species later this fall.

I fertilized and sowed at rates that I knew would insure rapid robust growth and provide high quality high yielding forage as I normally do. I didn't have tags for the PTT, DER and Oilseed radish left from last year but the other tags reveal that it is all grown in New Zealand...

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0010-1.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0006.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0008.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0009-1.jpg

On this farm in the past deer have not touched any brassicas with the exception of the GroundHog forage radish so it will be interesting to see how these do. In late August I will till the third set of strips and plant the rye plots and add test samples of the various forage radishes to those also...all of it under the watchful eye of a trusted trail camera to boot... ;)

dbltree
07-24-2010, 08:46 AM
What should it cost to plant an acre of brassicas anyway??

5#'s of mixed rape/turnip seed @ $3 = $15
200#'s of urea @ $15 a bag = $60
200-400#'s of 6-24-24 @ 16 = $64-128
optional :
5# of forage radish @ $2.65 =$13.25
Totals run between $76 to 220 an acre

Brassica seed should not cost more then $3.5 a# and urea (nitrogen) usage can be cut in 1/2 by tilling under a legume such as clover. P&K levels can be determined with a soil test thus avoiding unecessary expense and over application if one or both is not needed. PH levels may also have to be corrected with lime but that is not considered a yearly expense.

Deerwatchers Purple Top turnips are already well on their way and the condition of his crops in general are a sign that he is keeping nutrient levels high and not cutting corners.

I also strongly urge everyone to take note of Mikes strip cropping that insures that he has multiple food sources that last all year and allow him to easily rotate crops for healthy soils and high yielding forages!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/MikesPTTs.jpg

Hardwood11
07-24-2010, 09:17 AM
I planted brassicas this spring on my ground in MN and they look great. The turnips are enourmous. I did nothing out of the ordinary, hand spread, no fertilizer or weed control. The key was a very nice loose seed bed in the spring, and we have had plenty of rain.

It is a bit weedy, but I do not care, 1/2 acre so I can somewhat weed it by hand. It should be a late season deer magnet, for a very economical price...tillage and one bag or seed.

waylonb19
07-25-2010, 04:29 PM
I am planting a mix of Winter Rye, Oats, 6040 Peas, Ground hog radish and clover. When is the best time to get this in the ground in Central IA? I am thinking late August first part of Sept. but wanted some other input on this.

dbltree
07-25-2010, 05:49 PM
I am planting a mix of Winter Rye, Oats, 6040 Peas, Ground hog radish and clover. When is the best time to get this in the ground in Central IA? I am thinking late August first part of Sept. but wanted some other input on this.

You are correct...last week of August should be about right in your area...:way:

waylonb19
07-25-2010, 09:48 PM
One more question. What are my options as far as herbicides for this mix? I figure grass herbicides are out because of the oats and rye, but is there anything safe to spray for broadleaf if needed? Planting this late in the season I am thinking weeds might not be much of a problem but just curious.

dbltree
07-25-2010, 11:30 PM
One more question. What are my options as far as herbicides for this mix? I figure grass herbicides are out because of the oats and rye, but is there anything safe to spray for broadleaf if needed? Planting this late in the season I am thinking weeds might not be much of a problem but just curious.

No worries about weeds this fall...if any come up they will die at the first frost.

If you have cool season grasses like brome or fescue, then kill those first with glyphosate but beyond that you won't need any herbicides....;)

dbltree
07-26-2010, 03:56 PM
I posted comments earlier in this thread about the differences (or lack thereof) of the forage radish's but there is still some confusion on this topic and I get questions on this subject that might be easier to clarify here.

Daikon radish (Raphanus sativus var. longipinnatus) is a Japanese radish and the name quite literally means "long root".

While first grown for human consumption of the roots, they eventually became popular for grazing livestock...hence the name "forage radish".
Our friends in New Zealand are way ahead of us in growing forages for pasturing livestock, especially sheep largely because most of our livestock here in the US are raised in confinement. We tend to only pasture those areas that are to rough to cultivate or toarid to grow crops.

It is then no surprise that many of our clovers and brassicas are grown in New Zealand and because farmers there are set up to grow, harvest and market the seeds....we just purchase it from them.

Soil scientist Ray Weil and organic farmer Steve Groff have worked together on various types of cover crops and eventually discovered the advantages of these long rooted radish's for loosening compacted soils, recycling nitrogen and controlling weeds.

Ray then coined the name "Tillage" radish however forage and tillage are the exact same radish. Steff Groff trademarked the name "Tillage radish"
Ampac Seed is a farmer owned company that markets a variety of forage and cover crop seeds through dozens of retail seed dealer across the country including Welter Seed. Ampac trademarked the name "GroundHog" Radish

Kent Kammermeyer and Tommy Hunter joined together to trademark the name "Trophy" radish right sot which have since been sold to Pennington Seed.

Now anyone can "Trademark" almost anything...I could buy the very same radish seeds and "trademark" them "Dbltree's Monster Buck Radish" if I wanted to.

ALL of the Daikon forage radish seed that is being sold under those names is being grown in New Zealand as VNS seed..."variety not stated" that means that one or more farmers in New Zealand can sell their seed to literally all of the three trademark names listed above and ALL of it can be exactly the same seed, grown in the same field.

Currently they sell these seeds to markets in the US for roughly .75 cents a pound and then it is re-sold under the trademark names. Nothing unsual about any of that and does not this imply that anything at all is wrong with the seed.

The problem arises when someone attaches a "big buck" on a bag name to the seed and jacks the price up 200 or more %

Both GroundHog and Tillage brand seeds can be bought across the US for $2.50 - 3.20 per # but I have seen Trophy brand seeds being advertised for as high as $7 a pound which leaves me incredulous because it is ALL the SAME seeds!!

Seeds such as Durana or Alice clover are specific varieties that have been developed by plant breeders and then usually patented. Another example is Sucraseed's High Sugar Ryegrass...NO ONE else can market that seed which has very specific attributes found in no other ryegrass.

If the tag says VNS...the seed is NOT a variety...the variety is unknown!

That means that paying a premium for the seed would be nothing short of insanity...yet there are always the unknowing who are drawn to a "buck on a bag" seed like lambs to slaughter.

Ampac Seed (http://www.ampacseed.com/) has a great dealer search site for a dealer near you for GH radish seed.

Welter seed (http://www.welterseed.com/ProductDetails.aspx?id=418) markets seed for Ampac at very reasonable prices and you can order 5#'s or 50 and it pays to at least know what a "fair" price is before you purchase it locally.

Tillage Radish (http://www.tillageradish.com/) has a great web site with good cover crop info and also has a list of dealers.

Hopefully landowners will ALL learn from this and begin to realize that they are often (almost always) being taken to the cleaners when purchasing "buck on a bag" seed.

It is expensive and somewhat difficult to get a patent...one has to show that you have developed a specific variety with significant positive attributes before a patent will be issued for a "new" seed variety.

Paying for a trademark name is however relatively easy and attaching a "buck" name easily pursuades gullible hunters. Even well know companies such as WTI may use different seeds in their mixes because only the name on the bag is trademarked....yet hunters pay way more then a premium for this seed.

Know what you are getting before paying a dime more then fair market price for ANY seed and especially radish seed....;)

jmm46
07-26-2010, 11:27 PM
I'm a little confused on when to plant Purple top turnips and Dwarf Essex Rape. When is the best time to plant these? I thought end of July was the time to plant, however I see pictures of others that planted them in Spring or early summer...

dbltree
07-27-2010, 01:32 AM
I'm a little confused on when to plant Purple top turnips and Dwarf Essex Rape. When is the best time to plant these? I thought end of July was the time to plant, however I see pictures of others that planted them in Spring or early summer...

In my area mid July is usually the optimum time frame but in the far north late June to early July may work well for some.

Spring plantings I would not reccomend because in most cases the turnips will mature and go to seed if planted that early. In different areas of the country folks may need to do some testing of their own and plant some test spots at different time frames and see what works best....;)

risto2351
07-27-2010, 04:53 PM
Paul,
Looking to get the brassicas in this weekend.
With little rain on the horizon (20-30 % chance) should I wait to fertilize with Urea
or work it in the soil and put it in anyway?

dbltree
07-27-2010, 05:11 PM
Paul,
Looking to get the brassicas in this weekend.
With little rain on the horizon (20-30 % chance) should I wait to fertilize with Urea
or work it in the soil and put it in anyway?

Work it in at planting time and then rain isn't a factor, it's only when you broadcast it on top that you are at the mercy of the weather....;)

dbltree
07-28-2010, 10:27 PM
I swear everything Deerwatcher plants...leaps out of the ground the next day! :D

This is Gh forage radish and Dwarf Essex Rape he planted about a month ago.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/GHradish3.jpg

He overseeded some GroundHog forage radish into some thin areas and timely rains did the rest.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/GHradish1.jpg

And look it there...deer already flockin' to it! :p

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/GHradish2.jpg

I'm anxious to check on mine this weekend...the heat and humidy combined with plenty of soil moisture is making things grow right now!! :way:

HannibalBowhunter
08-01-2010, 07:31 AM
Great updates! I love following along with you. IF I were planting my brassicas by spraying and broadcasting would you recommend increasing rates? What about the groundhog radish - are they amenable to broadcasting? Plan to topdress with urea when rain is forecast.

dbltree
08-01-2010, 12:31 PM
Great updates! I love following along with you. IF I were planting my brassicas by spraying and broadcasting would you recommend increasing rates? What about the groundhog radish - are they amenable to broadcasting? Plan to topdress with urea when rain is forecast.

Yes...if broadcasting any seeds on untilled soil where germination is dependant on rainfall I usually up the rates a bit.

The GH radishes pictured above where broadcast on bare soil and germinated from rains only...:way:

dbltree
08-01-2010, 02:33 PM
7-31-2010 Brassica Test Plantings

I sowed the various brassicas in strips sandwhiched between strips of clover and next to standing soybeans and alfalfa

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Brassica6-1.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Brassica7.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Brassica1-3.jpg

They are coming up nicely on tilled soil ...these happen to be Purple Top Turnips and two year old seed

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Brassic8.jpg

I also overseeded mixed brassica seed into areas that had been killed with glyphosate...

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Brassica2-2.jpg

This area was just grass/weeds

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Brassica5-1.jpg

and into soybeans although I expect the soybeans to canopy and shade out the brassicas

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Brassica4-1.jpg

I will over seed brassicas (rape, turnips and forage radish) again in late August into the standing beans just before the leaves turn as well.

The tilled areas have been fertilized heavily and the untilled areas have recieved none at this point. In the past 12 years on this farm the only brassicas deer have touched were forage radishes so I expect to beable to show what the various varieties and species look like by fall.

Are Purple Top turnips bigger then Barkant? Will one rape or forage radish be sought out over another?

Time will tell.... ;)

dbltree
08-03-2010, 07:28 AM
200#'s of urea, 10" of rain and 3 weeks of hot, humid weather sure make the brassicas grow!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0002-1.jpg

Only a matter of time before the deer turn on them but for now they are unmolested

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0001-1.jpg

On this farm it is rare to get brassicas to survive until season despite having lots of alfalfa, clover and soybeans . All just common seeds one can buy from places like Welter Seed...no expensive "buck on a bag" seed, yet they pound them to the dirt.

Ohhh...no frost needed to sweeten them either... ;)

risto2351
08-03-2010, 08:19 AM
You are rubbing it in Paul.

I put all mine in Sunday late with rain on the horizon worked in the

200#'s of urea and did not get anything for rain in the NE corner of the state.

I think I have figured out how to make the rain stop up there for now.

Just plant my food plots. :(

Blaster
08-03-2010, 12:23 PM
How late can you plant brassicas in southern Iowa?

180class
08-03-2010, 12:47 PM
It's too late Derek. You're S.O.L.

dbltree
08-03-2010, 09:23 PM
How late can you plant brassicas in southern Iowa?

You can plant them all the way to the fist of September but that's like planting corn in June instead of April...growth and yield will be dramatically lowered the later you plant.

Ideally mid July is best but we are fixin' to plant some more this week and they will still put on some great growth!:way:

KSQ2
08-04-2010, 02:28 PM
I'll be planting brassicas here in Southern Kansas in about two weeks or so. it's pretty dry down here right now, and HOT! What do I need to do to "work the seed in"? Last year I disked, fertilized, broadcast and then dragged (chainlink fence with cinder blocks on it). The dragging buried the seed too deep, the only places it came up was where the drag missed. Will a cultipacker sufficiently bury the seed in case it takes a while to rain?
Also, I'll be planting into a 1/2 acre disked soybean plot, with the nitrogen from the beans can I go a little lighter on the fertilizer?

dbltree
08-04-2010, 06:28 PM
All I use is a cultipacker or for very small plots you can run an ATV over the seedbed (back n forth) to cover the seedbed. Very easy to bury the tiny seeds!

Soybeans usually give you about 30 N credits the following year although the season is 1/2 over compared to following with corn...;)

dbltree
08-05-2010, 06:53 AM
We put 400#'s of triple 19 per acre (which is nearly 80#'s each of NPK) on my friend Walt's brassicas at planting time.

Lot's of rain and hot humid weather have them growing like crazy now!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0014.jpg

This pic shows the broad leaves of the rape and turnips and how quickly they canopy and why other crops would quickly be smothered.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0005-1.jpg

Here you can see a few GroundHog forage radish plants

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0007.jpg

The feathery leaf of the forage radish still forms a dense canopy but allows more light then the large soild leaf of the rape and turnip plants.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0008-1.jpg

I noticed the tiny seeds didn't go quite as far as I though leaving a small area along the edge with fewer plants

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0004-1.jpg

If one has the time you can close down the gate on the seeder and travel both ways for better coverage but on long strips it's not really practical so just be aware that the small seeds don't "fly" very far when using a hand or bag seeder... ;)

dtr
08-06-2010, 09:05 AM
Last weekend i tilled up my plots and was going to go borrow a cultipacker but it looked like heavy rains were coming so I didn't have time to cultipack. The seedbeds were really fluffy. I broadcast a mixture of turnips, sugar beets, radishes, and wintergreens and unfortunately we only got about 1/4" of rain. We just missed all the heavier rains. I checked the plots yesterday and am seeing some germination but am worried about whether or not they will make it with all the hot dry weather that's now in the forecast. The dirt is powder dry on top now. Is it possible that the newly germinated brassicas coud die if there isn't any rain for a while? How long can they survive waiting on the next rain?

dbltree
08-08-2010, 03:54 PM
The dirt is powder dry on top now. Is it possible that the newly germinated brassicas coud die if there isn't any rain for a while? How long can they survive waiting on the next rain? <!-- / message -->

It's possible but also a good chance that most of them won't germinate until you do get a good rain. Keep us posted on how they do?

dbltree
08-08-2010, 05:46 PM
August 7 2010 planted July 17th, 22 days now

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/CIMG1618.jpg

Not bad for the "cheap seeds" ;)

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/CIMG1617.jpg

It's easy to see the folly in trying to plant other crops with brassicas that are sown at normal planting rates!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/CIMG1616.jpg

At only 3 weeks old they are already canopied and dominating even the weeds!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/CIMG1615.jpg

A whole bunch of winter feed right there! :way:

dtr
08-08-2010, 10:20 PM
Awesome looking plots doubletree! Looks like rain is on the horizon for tonight. I checked my plots today and the new brassicas are hanging in there so far. It's amazing they are still alive when the soil is so dry and it's been so hot. If we get this rain tonight, I'll be home free.

Do you ever broadcast fertilizer after germination? Chem gro spread my fertilizer and only put about 20 pounds of nitrogen on my plots. Lots of P and K, but not much nitrogen. Just wondering if I should broadcast more nitrogen at some point? If so, how long should I wait?

NWBuck
08-09-2010, 09:30 AM
We planted our plot about 10 days after yours, and the combination of rain and heat we've been getting has them off to an excellent start.

http://i568.photobucket.com/albums/ss121/NWBuck/P1040631.jpg

Unfortunately, it has also given new life to the button weeds, and it looks like I better find some time for another round of spraying this week.

http://i568.photobucket.com/albums/ss121/NWBuck/P1040632.jpg

dbltree
08-09-2010, 10:14 AM
Just wondering if I should broadcast more nitrogen at some point? If so, how long should I wait?

Yes...brassicas need 60-80#'s actual N for best results so if one isn't able to till it at planting (best method) then broadcast urea at 30 days (roughly) just before a big rain (like the rain we just had)

You need a minimum 1/2 rain to incorporate the urea withion 24 hours or it will be lost to the atmosphere.

Watch the weather and when a good storm is imminent, broadcast the urea...pain in the butt sometimes so I find it much easier and safer to till it in at planting time...;)

new life to the button weeds

I had an outbreak of velvertleaf in some of mine too....probably allow it to get above the brassicas and clip them off.

Your brassicas look great! :way:

dbltree
08-09-2010, 11:03 PM
I was really gettin' tired of Deerwatcher kickin' my butt with his beautiful food plots all the time but I think maybe I got a leg up on him this time!:D

Brassicas at 3 weeks up WI way...:way:

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/MIkesbrassicas3weeks.jpg

Just don't pay any attention to the other awesome crops in the background...:rolleyes:

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/MIkesbrassicas3wks.jpg

Mike mentioned they had a good rain up his way so I expect he'll have some rapid growth now. No chance of deer going hungry around his place! ;)

dbltree
08-11-2010, 07:07 PM
A friend of mine asked me earlier this summer if he couldn't just let his brassicas that had survived the winter, go to seed and then just disc them in and re-seed? I suggested against it but didn't have hard facts as to why...just a gut feeling that it could turn into a mess.

Recently another gentleman called me with questions and noted that he had done just that....disced his brassicas in after they went to seed, only to be dismayed when he ended up with a carpet of brassicas thicker then hair on a dogs back! You might liken it to dumping a bag of seed corn on the ground and kicking it around a bit...folks it just isn't going to work.

He ended up re-discing the sprouted brassicas under and sowing new seed at a low rate and is hoping that more of the volunteer seed won't come up with it. Others have fought re-seeded brassicas that came back for years like weeds, haunting them as they try to kill it off so I advise against allowing your brassicas to go to seed. If at all possible till them under in the spring and plant annual clovers or buckwheat for the summer or if all else fails get out the Roundup and kill the plot after it's greened up in May.

Couple pics of different brassica species and varieties as of early August

Barnopoli Rape

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/CIMG1621.jpg

Appin Turnip

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/CIMG1622.jpg

GroundHog Forage Radish

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/CIMG1620.jpg

Each slightly different but all very attractive to whitetails... ;)

tommyls1313
08-13-2010, 06:46 PM
I planted 5 plots last weekend with some Biologic brassicas, Whitetail Institute Tall Tine Tubers, and purple top turnips. The next day we got rains on each farm ranging from 1" to 2.5". Should I be worried about getting to much rain to start on my plots and be prepared to reseed?

Thanks in advance

dbltree
08-13-2010, 09:01 PM
I planted 5 plots last weekend with some Biologic brassicas, Whitetail Institute Tall Tine Tubers, and purple top turnips. The next day we got rains on each farm ranging from 1" to 2.5". Should I be worried about getting to much rain to start on my plots and be prepared to reseed?

Thanks in advance

The ones you see posted we had 2 1/2" 3 days later and 5" more in the next few days...so you should be fine unless it's extremely hilly soil.

They should be up and growing by now! :way:

tommyls1313
08-13-2010, 10:38 PM
Sweeew:) Thanks dbltree. That makes me feel much better

buckhunter31
08-14-2010, 08:25 AM
I am wondering what i can spray on my brassica plot i am having a grass issue? Can I spray post on it?

Alpha Doe
08-14-2010, 08:43 PM
Do you already have the poast herbicide? If so that will kill the grasses and will not hurt your brassicas. Any grass specific herbicides will be safe on brassicas. Have you considered using a generic clethodim such as Arrow for grass control? It is usually lower priced than Poast or Select.

buckhunter31
08-15-2010, 07:47 AM
yes i already have the poast. I live on a cranberry marsh so we have all kinds of chemicals. Thanks for the help.

risto2351
08-16-2010, 01:49 PM
Paul,

I used my rake yesterday to break up the dirt on the top of the plots.

Question is should I recultipack and then seed and cultipack or just seed
after I break the top?

Welters will send me my seed tomorrow and I will get it replanted.

Thanks for your help and sorry for bothering you on Sunday.

KSQ2
08-20-2010, 02:56 PM
Dbltree, can I topdress phosphorus? I tilled in potash and nitrogen at planting, but I neglected phosphorus.

dbltree
08-21-2010, 07:44 AM
Paul,

I used my rake yesterday to break up the dirt on the top of the plots.

Question is should I recultipack and then seed and cultipack or just seed
after I break the top?

Welters will send me my seed tomorrow and I will get it replanted.

Thanks for your help and sorry for bothering you on Sunday.

I've been onvacation so I imagine you already got it planted but if the soil is not tilled deep and loose then one could just sow and cultipack.

Dbltree, can I topdress phosphorus? I tilled in potash and nitrogen at planting, but I neglected phosphorus.

Yep...you can apply P&K anytime...;)

I've been on vacation this past week and I returned to find I was inundated with messages about drowned brassicas or brassicas that failed to come up due to soil crusting.

Heavy summer rains on saturated soils continue to cause drowning problems in August just as it did with corn in May and there is little we can do about it except re-plant.

Heavy soils pounded by 2-3" rains followed by hot baking sun has also caused severe soil crsuting, something that prevents the tiny brassicas from emerging once they germinate.

This often happens with soybeans and farmers use a rotary hoe to loosen soils but brassicas are too fragile for this an the the how would finish off whatever was left of them.

One of my friends had brassicas drown

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Drownedbrassicas.jpg

despite being on extremely fertile soil...there is nothing to show for our efforts

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Deadbrassicas.jpg

another friend was diasspointed to find his soils crusted over with only a smattering of emerged brassicas...note the cracked soil surface that only comes when the upper surface forms a dried crust.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/SoilCrusting.jpg

It's getting late in the summer but one has several options...

Overseed more brassicas without tilling and hope for rains to germinate the seeds.

Leave it for now and overseed winter rye in another week (if there is at least some emerged brassicas to warrant "filling in" with rye)

Till it up and re-plant a cereal mix such as rye/peas and forage radish.

At this point I personally would opt to re-plant with cereals the end of August but each landowner will want to weight the pros and cons and decide if they have anything worth salvaging in their current brassica plot.

Brassicas can be planted all the way to Sept 1st but in most mid-west and northern states they won't have much growing time and a cereal grain mix will be more productive.

Forage radishes grow very fast and in 30 days can produce a lot of forage so they make a slightly better alternative where rape and turnip plantings have failed late in the summer...;)

DE2IA
08-21-2010, 12:00 PM
This has me worried....mine were planted 8/7 in SE Iowa.....did anyone in that are have success? I haven't had a chance to check mine yet.

KSQ2
08-22-2010, 08:40 AM
Yep...you can apply P&K anytime...;)
I'm assuming you mean I can top dress the granular type phosphorus I get at the feed store in bulk, right? If so, do I need to try and spread this before a rain, or will it last a while? Sorry, I'm a little naive with this stuff...

letemgrow
08-22-2010, 08:50 AM
I'm assuming you mean I can top dress the granular type phosphorus I get at the feed store in bulk, right? If so, do I need to try and spread this before a rain, or will it last a while? Sorry, I'm a little naive with this stuff...


P&K will not evaporate off like N will. :way:

KSQ2
08-22-2010, 12:17 PM
Thanks! I'll get some on it this week!

risto2351
08-23-2010, 11:43 AM
Well Paul you were correct I had it all disked the day I talked to you and had it planted the next day.

Problem #1: All the rain they had last week missed me.
Don't know how but it did. :(

Problem #2: No rain forecasted for the next week.

After all the rain this summer I can not believe it.

KSQ2
08-23-2010, 02:24 PM
Problem #1: All the rain they had last week missed me.
Don't know how but it did. :(

Problem #2: No rain forecasted for the next week.


Your not alone, I don't think mine will make it down here in Kansas, just looked at it last night. We need rain BAD!

dtr
08-23-2010, 08:19 PM
I planted my brassicas around the first of August and did not have a cultipacker. I tilled my plots first and there was so much rain in the forecast I went ahead and broadcast the seed with my 4wheeler instead of waiting and cultipacking. That was a big mistake. The only areas I have that germinated well are in the tire tracks of my 4 wheeler. Everwhere else is very spotty! I never realized how critical culitpacking was but I know now! I'll never do that again.

I think I'm going to broadcast rye into these plots to fill in all the bare spots. Does that make sense Paul?

dbltree
08-23-2010, 08:19 PM
You may be surprised...if there is eough soil moisture to germinate seed your better off sometimes with out rainfall until after they emerge.

Keep us posted on how they do?

KSQ2
08-26-2010, 10:41 AM
It's been two weeks since we planted our brassicas the soil was powder dry at planting. We've had one decent rain on them five days after planting (1") and they have germinated. Now the plants are about a 1/2" tall and actually look pretty good considering the heat and lack of rain lately. How much longer will they make it w/o a good rain on them?

dbltree
08-26-2010, 11:19 AM
I think I'm going to broadcast rye into these plots to fill in all the bare spots. Does that make sense Paul?

You bet! I overseed heavily grazed brassicas and thin spots with winter rye every year...works very well.

How much longer will they make it w/o a good rain on them?

Hard to say? Depends on the soil type and sub soil moisture...brassicas are like corn, they love water and nitrogen and without them they eventually start to suffer.

Hope you get some rain soon:way:

KSQ2
08-26-2010, 11:37 AM
Hope you get some rain soon:way:

You and me both!

dbltree
08-27-2010, 09:15 PM
August 27th 2010

I checked on the brassicas today, in the ground about 45 days now and looking great!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Brassicaswestfield.jpg

A few spots had some browning I believe from heavy rains a while back but for the most part they look healthy!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/CIMG1727.jpg

This is an example of how healthy, properly planted brassicas shade eveything else out and make it nearly impossible to grow clovers and other crops with them unless planting rates are cut severely.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/CIMG1734.jpg

Now here's where it gets interesting....I sowed 5#'s of a mix of turnips and rape and 5#'s of GroundHog Forage radish in all the plots and fertilized with 400#'s of triple 19 in this case (nearly 80# each actual NPK)

As I walkd thru the plots I soon noticed that nearly every single GHFR had been heavily grazed!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/CIMG1733.jpg

Now obviously at the heavy rates planted the whole patch is a solid mass of brassicas but deer have stepped thru the plot carefully choosing the GHFR over the other brassicas!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/CIMG1730.jpg

The GHFR plants are all tall and healthy and growing well and providing a tremendous amount of forage

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/CIMG1729.jpg

It's easy to see that the other forage brassicas have not been touched at this point

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/CIMG1728.jpg

Another interesting aspect is that in some cases they have begun to eat the radish roots...in August no less!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/CIMG1737.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/CIMG1736.jpg

I would really like to hear from other landowners across the country who may be trying forage radish this year to see how deer on your property react to them. As one can see....these radish plants have not seen a frost and with lush white clover plots next to them, deer are hardly starving for feed.

Post up your own results or lack of it but this is the second year in a row that deer have begun pounding the GroundHog forage radishes here in SE Iowa well before cold weather. :way:

HannibalBowhunter
08-27-2010, 09:41 PM
I checked on my brassicas today which weren't planted until August 13. I notice that in both plots the GHFR were noticeably taller and seemed to have a higher germination rate than than the other brassicas in the mix (rape, turnips, and hybrid forage brassica). Is this typical?

dbltree
08-28-2010, 08:23 PM
I checked on my brassicas today which weren't planted until August 13. I notice that in both plots the GHFR were noticeably taller and seemed to have a higher germination rate than than the other brassicas in the mix (rape, turnips, and hybrid forage brassica). Is this typical?

I wouldn't say it is typical because the brassicas pictures are all about the same height but one place where I planted the mix in clay soils not quite dry enough the GHFR did better. The other brassicas were not strong enough to break thru the crust but the radishes did and of course are taller and thicker then the others.

Couple thoughts for those who have had brassica failures...

In several cases severe soil crusting prevented the tiny brassica seeds from emerging, they germinate but cannot break thru the crusted soil surface.

Soil crusting occures on heavy clay type soils when the soil is worked a little on the wet side, and then it dries in the summer sun or gets heavy hard rains followed by hot sun. The clay bakes like a brick and seals the soil surface and small brassica seedlings cannot break thru...they germinate and then die just under the surface.

The weather is something we have no control over and sometimes it's "now or never" and we end up planting in less then ideal conditions that often end up failures when planting brassicas.

Those with light sandy soils don't have soil crusting problems but have to deal with drought and brassicas suffer quickly without sufficient rainfall.

Brassicas also don't like poor PH situations so don't guess...soil test first and know where you stand before planting your crops.

The good thing is that winter rye will thrive in each one of those situations....it's rare that soil crusting will stop the tough rye seeds from breaking thru, only extreme drought will effect rye and rye also grows in low PH situations.

If you brassicas failed...pick up some winter rye and you'll still have a great food plot to get your thru this fall!

dbltree
09-01-2010, 07:19 PM
While planting the cereal grains I tilled right up close to the brassica plantings in the strip plots and I noticed the tiller uprooted a few of the GroundHog Forage radishes in places and at least revealed some in others.

I had already put in a 12 hour day so didn't go hunting for the biggest baddest radish root but just quickly snapped a few pics along the edge.

Many are as bigger or bigger then a hammer handle!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0226.jpg

Some day I'll take a tape measure and something for reference but these give you some idea of the size of these things in 50 days of growing.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0220.jpg

They still have an easy 45 days to grow but you can see they have already eaten most of the foliage off this plant!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0224.jpg

Deer have been attacking them with a vengence so perhaps few will survive that long but for now there are still plenty in this field.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0217.jpg

These had 200#'s of urea and 400#'s of 6-24-24 in addition to plowing under clover and rye so they are well fed and doing a great job of attracting and holding whitetails as summer turns to fall... :way:

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0218.jpg

scottonbuck
09-01-2010, 08:36 PM
Looks awesome. I just hope my Brassicas are able to take off with flying colors after last month of heavy rains. Last nights rain mixed with all this sunshine we have had lately might be the ticket.

waylonb19
09-04-2010, 08:43 AM
Yeah my acre of brassicas failed to this yr. I planted before a rain and thought it would be perfect. Only problem is we had 2" of rain a day after I planted..then another 2" the day after that. I believe it either burried my seed to deep or just crusted over and they couldn't come up. Planning on planting it into rye. Is it to late to plant Ground hog radish also? I assume I could get away with planting it still since I just planted some a week ago. Just wanted your thoughts. Just plant it into Rye? Or throw some GHR into the mix?

dbltree
09-04-2010, 09:05 AM
Is it to late to plant Ground hog radish also?

Nope! That's a good thing about GHFR...it's fast growing and is most commonly planted about Sept 1st or even later as a cover crop.

In 30 days it can provide a huge amount of feed...that's of course assuming deer actually allow it to grow...:rolleyes:

Go ahead and add it to your rye planting and let us know how it does for you :way:

waylonb19
09-04-2010, 07:30 PM
I am guessing a light frost wont hurt them then. I need to replant but I am not sure if I can get my radishes before Thurs. which is when they are calling for rain. With the short week Welters prob can't get it here before then. So it's going to be at least a week before I can plant and that depends on how much rain we get. :( Farming sure is tough.

davidoswalt054
09-04-2010, 08:15 PM
Should I fertilize after the brassicas have been growing 4 weeks, I did fertilize when I planted them.

dbltree
09-05-2010, 09:01 PM
Should I fertilize after the brassicas have been growing 4 weeks, I did fertilize when I planted them.

It won't hurt anything but it really depends on how much you put down at planting?

The only thing brassicas are really going to need at this point it nitrogen so if you put down 60-90#'s of actual N at planting, that's probably enough.

Any less then that and they could stand being sidedressed but remember urea needs to be applied just before a minimum 1/2" of rain or you'll lose most of it within 24-48 hours...;)

waylonb19
09-06-2010, 06:17 PM
What is the latest a guy could get away with planting ground hog radish in Central IA?

MK M GOBL
09-06-2010, 06:21 PM
Thursday we had 2" of rain in 30 minutes. My turnip plot looked awesome up until that. It was 12-18" tall. On Friday it looked like someone ran over it with a lawn roller. I've never seen turnips do this, but they got flattened. I'm hoping they pop back up, but some of the stems were even broken. I've been growing turnips for years and never had this happen. Anyone else have this happen during a heavy rain?

dbltree
09-06-2010, 07:41 PM
What is the latest a guy could get away with planting ground hog radish in Central IA?

I think I would want them in by this coming weekend to get any substantial growth but if we have late frosts perhaps even a week later might still work?

I've never seen turnips do this, but they got flattened.

I can't say that I have witnessed that problem? Let us know if they stand back up and recover or not?

Mikes GroundHog forage radish and Purple Top Turnip plot is doing great up in WI! :way:

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/MikesGHFR9-6-2010.jpg

The GroundHog forage radishes have put some meat on!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/MikesGHFR.jpg

and the Purple Top turnips aren't to shabby either!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/MikesPTT9-6-10.jpg

Since the deer are all in his sugarbeet plot....there ought to be plenty of late winter feed left in his brassica plot... ;)

risto2351
09-07-2010, 09:41 AM
Paul,

I put down 150#'s of Urea down twice this year. As you know the first time it got crusted over and the second time we went 2 weeks before a rain. I did work it into the soil with the rake and did not just topdress it.

Should I add more with the long stint of no rain or just wait it out?



It won't hurt anything but it really depends on how much you put down at planting?

The only thing brassicas are really going to need at this point it nitrogen so if you put down 60-90#'s of actual N at planting, that's probably enough.

Any less then that and they could stand being sidedressed but remember urea needs to be applied just before a minimum 1/2" of rain or you'll lose most of it within 24-48 hours...;)

dbltree
09-07-2010, 11:43 AM
Are the brassicas up and growing or are these just planted? Once brassicas begin to grow it's easy to monitor growth and decided if more N is needed or not.

Lush green leaves indicate they are probably getting enough nitrogen but pale, yellow stunted plants are probably starving for N.

Keep and eye on them and see how they do with what you have already applied...;)

dtr
09-08-2010, 08:21 AM
How do you post attachments on this site? I'm not the greatest with computers. I'd like to post a picture of a weed that's in some of my brassica plots to see if anyone knows what it is.

Tracker15
09-08-2010, 11:42 AM
DTR See below

How do I attach a file to a post?
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dtr
09-08-2010, 08:50 PM
Thanks Tracker 15. I must be blind because I can't find any button labeled "Manage Attachments". I wanted to post a pictures of a "weed" that is thriving in my foodplots to see if anyone knew what it was.

I sent the picture to a friend and his wife identified it as "purslane". The reason I was curious is that the deer are hammering it. I've got pics of deer eating it constantly. They are keeping it mowed down and aren't bothering the brassicas too much. Turns out it's some type of herb that is edible for humans and is actually served in some restaraunts. As much as my deer seem to like it, I wonder if a person could plant it?

dtr
09-08-2010, 08:54 PM
Paul,

I have one brassica plot that has turnips with leaves that are turning yellow. In all my other plots they are dark green and thriving. I'm assuming it's from a lack of nitrogen but I can't understand why because all of them were fertilized and limed the same.

Is it too late to put down some more nitrogen?

Sligh1
09-09-2010, 12:19 AM
DTR- area get too wet? I think I have some of the same issues as you with a few areas on my plot that should be fine according to fertilizer input. Too much rain is my guess (talked with Dbltree earlier on that one) as that would really be the only other reason. And I guess one other reason could be that area was planted too thick - planted thicker than the area that looks good. Either too wet or too thick of seeding.

dbltree
09-09-2010, 06:52 AM
Paul,

I have one brassica plot that has turnips with leaves that are turning yellow. In all my other plots they are dark green and thriving. I'm assuming it's from a lack of nitrogen but I can't understand why because all of them were fertilized and limed the same.

Is it too late to put down some more nitrogen?

It's not to late to add nitrogen (today or Friday would be good days because we have rain coming in) but as Skip mentions a lot of brassicas are stunted because of heavy rains on already saturated soils.

If you look closely you may find that the healthy brassicas are on slightly higher soils, sometimes only a slight 1 to 2" rise. There the roots are getting air and not drowning in water.

Of course you maybe also be suffering from dry soils depending on where you live and they will suffer from lack of water.

At this point urea, ammonium nitrate or sulfate would provide brassicas with an extra boost although they may never fully catch up. ;)

dbltree
09-09-2010, 07:55 AM
Lot's of stunted or discolored brassicas showing up in areas of the field slightly lower then others where constant heavy fainfall on saturated soils caused some drowning in the same way corn drowned this spring. Bone dry soils may be the problem in other areas of the country where brassica leaves may appear brown and burnt around the edges.

These are discolored and stunted from too much rain...

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0225.jpg

Drought stricken brassicas probably will not respond to an application of nitrogen unless it's also accomponied by plenty of rain. On the other hand stunted brassicas in wet areas (that have since dried out) may respond to nitrogen simply because heavy rains pushed N beyond the root zones.

Most areas have 3-6 weeks growing time so adding 100#'s or urea within 24 hours of a minimum 1/2" rain could improve both forage and root yields.
Those that have plant a mixed brassica planting that includes rape, turnips and forage radish may be interested in seeing which varieties deer forage first.

Deer seem to attack the GroundHog forage radish first, then rape plants and later the turnip plants but each of you may find some differences.

This is Barnapoli Rape...

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0250.jpg

Appin turnips...

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0248.jpg

Turnip roots should be developing rapidly now

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0252.jpg

Brassicas can be a great element in your habitat program but remember not to "bet the fram" on them or any other single food source! Crops fail or deer may reject them so divide your plots and provide multiple food sources that can be easily rotated each year... :way:

risto2351
09-09-2010, 08:39 AM
They are just starting to fill in as we speak.

They are green and look to be doing pretty good.

Had .30 of an inch of rain a few days ago.

We do not have a lot of rain coming or forcasted so if I do need anymore I might have to check and see what Wally World has on sale or let the chips fall where they may. :way:



Are the brassicas up and growing or are these just planted? Once brassicas begin to grow it's easy to monitor growth and decided if more N is needed or not.

Lush green leaves indicate they are probably getting enough nitrogen but pale, yellow stunted plants are probably starving for N.

Keep and eye on them and see how they do with what you have already applied...;)

dbltree
09-10-2010, 01:13 PM
I planted one test plot in early August that contains individual varieties of turnips, rape and radish plants. Ground was a little to wet, poured rain afterwards and then hot backing sun caused some soil crusting but eventually the seed struggled to life and the plants are looking pretty decent now.

I planted GroundHog, Trophy/Tillage and Oilseed radishes in the strip sandwhiched between multiple rape and turnip varieties in the strip and inbetween clover and now rye/pea strips. The entire thing is only yards away from a large field of soybeans as you can see here in the background and alfalfa behind me.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0149.jpg

I just wanted to point out that clearly there is large amount of very desirable food sources yet...they are trashing the radishes!


http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0156.jpg

Both leaves..

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0154.jpg

and roots

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0150.jpg

This is the second year in a row they have hammered the radish plants yet in the past never touched a leaf on ordinary brassicas.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0152.jpg

No reason that I can see that they would choose the radish plants except that they love the taste of these things!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0151.jpg

It's one thing to plant them in an area with no other food sourceds and say "they like them" but when they are wading in high quality feed that they are well adpated to eating...yet choose forage radish, well....that's work shoutin' about... :way:

dbltree
09-14-2010, 01:44 PM
I planted some GroundHog Forage radish in the garden the first part of June, it got grazed off once but eventually recovered and is still growing!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0122.jpg

My hat gives one an idea how big the roots can get!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0123.jpg

During the heat of the day they wilt a little but even at that this is an example of height.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0001.jpg

Had they not been eaten down perhaps they may have went to seed by now although I have seen no sign of any attempting too. Based on that I would say that GHFR can be planted as early as the first part of July with no worries about them becoming ranks or going to seed in most of the mid west or northern areas.... :way:

dbltree
09-15-2010, 01:36 PM
If your tired of hearing about forage radish....now would be the time to exit this post...

I use small odd areas in between crop fields at my home farm as "test plots" simply because the ag crops give one a better more truthful test by putting any "test" crops up against what deer are accustomed to eating. In the past I have tested all the major brands and varieties of brassicas side by side in plots such as this one...beautiful brassicas but deer touched nary a one of them.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/BiologicMax10-10.jpg

Not unusual and on other farms deer mowed the same brassicas to the dirt, so in that test I was able to show that deer did not show a preference for expensive "buck on a bag" or "brand" brassicas over commonly available brassicas seed. I also established a simple fact...that deer had not yet developed a taste for brassicas at my home farm where they are literally wading in corn, soybeans and alfalfa.

Only 5 days ago I shared a picture of forage radishes in one of my test plots that were being grazed heavily despite being surrounded by soybeans, alfalfa, clover and corn.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0149.jpg

This morning I went down to do some fertilizer testing and was surprised to find this...

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0014.jpg

EVERY single radish plant devoured while the other brassicas remain untouched!! :eek:

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0015.jpg

The ground is trampled with deer tracks and the forage and roots eaten to the ground

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0018-2.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0017-1.jpg

I've never seen anything like it!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0016-1.jpg

Now I have seen deer mow everything to the ground, that is certain but not selectively choose certain plants in a small area such as this with so much other feed available!

The rest of the test strip contains a multitude of other brassica varieties...none of which have been touched as of yet.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0019-2.jpg

The other brassicas have huge, healthy and lush leaves

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0022-1.jpg

In another test area I had planted my "mix" of brassicas and GHFR and as you can see it's right smack against some beautiful white clover

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0024.jpg

Yet deer are selectively picking out the Groundhog forage radish plants

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0025-1.jpg

In the first pictures I had planted GroundHog, Oilseed and Tillage/Trophy radish seed and as you can see they at ALL of them plum to the dirt! I've tried to show the still green soybeans (that are still being heavily grazed as well) along with the lush clover to make it clear that these deer simply do not need to eat the radish plants.

They are eating them to the dirt simply because they love the taste of both the forage and the roots...that my friends is a fact!

What you spend spend you seed budget on makes no never mind to me but if you want some great forage that is very inexpensive...consider giving GroundHog forage radish a try.... :way:

GroundHog Forage Radish seed source (http://www.welterseed.com/ProductDetails.aspx?id=418)

Boz
09-15-2010, 02:43 PM
I see that you planted the GHR in June, and they have been devoured before hunting season. My question is, would it be better to plant them in late August / early September so they might make it to bow season?

bowhuntr311
09-15-2010, 05:51 PM
Ok Dbltree,

You have now steered me AWAY from GHFR. True I want my deer to eat my brassicas but I want them to wait as late into the year as possible. I would be furious if I planted a plot full of GHFR for a late season spot and came in before season to find them gone. Even adding these into a mix sounds like a bad idea. As long as your goal for brassicas is for late season feed.

So here is my questions to you: why are the deer after the ONE kind and not the rest? Something to do with a certain maturity level of them and not the others maybe? Do you think that your GHFR plot is an exeption to the norm?

dbltree
09-15-2010, 09:12 PM
I see that you planted the GHR in June, and they have been devoured before hunting season. My question is, would it be better to plant them in late August / early September so they might make it to bow season?

I only planted a sample plot in the garden in June...normally I plant the forage radishes with rape and turnips in mid July and then again mixed with winter rye, oats and peas in late August.

You have now steered me AWAY from GHFR. True I want my deer to eat my brassicas but I want them to wait as late into the year as possible. I would be furious if I planted a plot full of GHFR for a late season spot and came in before season to find them gone. Even adding these into a mix sounds like a bad idea. As long as your goal for brassicas is for late season feed.

So here is my questions to you: why are the deer after the ONE kind and not the rest? Something to do with a certain maturity level of them and not the others maybe? Do you think that your GHFR plot is an exeption to the norm?

Couple points I think your missing here...the area they wiped out is only a very tiny test area and where I mixed the GHFR with other brassicas in large (several acres) plantings they are holding their own although still being grazed heavily.

Planting a small plot of GHFR alone in an area with no other food sources would be akin to doing the same thing with soybeans...they would get wiped out in short order!

On the other hand it's extremely important to feed deer year around to hold them on our property, so we need food sources that they can't resist.

A mixed brassica planting that includes GroundHog forage radish insures that deer will start using the plot early, yet also insures that they will spare the turnips allowing them to grow and provide late season feed.

why are the deer after the ONE kind and not the rest? Something to do with a certain maturity level of them and not the others maybe? Do you think that your GHFR plot is an exeption to the norm?

I'm not sure I understand this question?? Why are deer after the radish plants and not the other brassicas??

Obviously because they are extremely palatable and sweet and turnip greens are not! (cook some of each and see for yourself...;):D )

I want deer to stay in my food sources 24-7...365 days a year...a combination of food sources that include plants like GHFR insure that happens...:way:

bowhuntr311
09-15-2010, 09:41 PM
Planting a small plot of GHFR alone in an area with no other food sources would be akin to doing the same thing with soybeans...they would get wiped out in short order!

My biggest plot is an acre. I cant afford space wise to to plant multiple crops. Each plot that I plant is for a different parts of the season. If I had enough space I would plant different crops but Im limited to a plot per property if Im lucky. Hence, planting GHFR alone would not do me much good, I think the deer would blow through my 1/2acre plots in days. Although I do agree, planting them in with a big enough brassica plot may allow one planting and you would have deer steady grazing over a longer period of time.



Obviously because they are extremely palatable and sweet and turnip greens are not! (cook some of each and see for yourself...;):D )


So unlike turnip greens which seem to be sweeter and more palatable after freezing the GHFR are sweeter already, if you had enough and they would last until some hard frosts would they become even more sweet?

Boz
09-16-2010, 10:38 AM
So I have a rookie food plotter question about how and why we didn't get any brassicas to germinate. We have a farm in south central Iowa (Leon area)that we recently tried to plant brassicas on. On July 31st we mowed 4 acres that had been in CRP for the last couple years and sprayed Round Up. The next morning we tilled everything in, cultipacked, broad cast the seed and cultipacked again. Would planting after only 12 hours of spraying Round Up cause seeds not to germinate? The only place seeds are coming up is at the edge where 4x4 turned around and sprayer was shut down, so we are assuming it is a round up issue.

dbltree
09-16-2010, 08:47 PM
I cant afford space wise to to plant multiple cropsI would counter that you can't afford not too...no reason on earth not to plant clover, brassicas and a cereal combination in any size plots to hold deer all year long.

I do it with very high deer densities and plots as small as gardens.

I normally plant 5#'s per acre of a brassica mix but when I add GHFR I add 5#'s and fertilize with 200#'s of urea so I'm not short changing my yield or forage quality...so one has nothing to lose and everything to gain...;)

after freezing the GHFR are sweeter already, if you had enough and they would last until some hard frosts would they become even more sweet? Good question? Could very well be true and I wouldn't be surprised at all but I don't have facts on the subject? I think all brassicas tend to get sweeter as starches turn to sugars after frosts and that would include forage radishes.

So I have a rookie food plotter question about how and why we didn't get any brassicas to germinate. We have a farm in south central Iowa (Leon area)that we recently tried to plant brassicas on. On July 31st we mowed 4 acres that had been in CRP for the last couple years and sprayed Round Up. The next morning we tilled everything in, cultipacked, broad cast the seed and cultipacked again. Would planting after only 12 hours of spraying Round Up cause seeds not to germinate? The only place seeds are coming up is at the edge where 4x4 turned around and sprayer was shut down, so we are assuming it is a round up issue. Roundup would have absolutely no effect on your brassica germination but I can tell you what caused your brassica planting to fail.

Happened to many of us all across southern Iowa, extremely heavy rains followed by hot baking summer sun caused severe soil crusting.

A 1/2" crust will keep all tiny seeds like brassicas from emerging after germination and the heavy rains followed by hot sunshine backed the upper layer like a brick.

Seeds germinate but can't emerge....areas that may not have been compacted as much (like around the edges, raised areas or more mellow loamy soils) would see seed emergence.

The only other reason would be if you had some other herbicide in your tank before spraying the roundup...such as 2-4D perhaps but barring that I suspect soil crusting...;)

Boz
09-16-2010, 09:39 PM
Thanks for the input, guess my farmer friends weren't full of it :) If that happens again next year is there anything to do other than re-planting?

dbltree
09-18-2010, 08:01 AM
Thanks for the input, guess my farmer friends weren't full of it :) If that happens again next year is there anything to do other than re-planting?

No not really...it happens with soybeans frequently and farmers use a rotary hoe to break the crust but soybeans are very large and string, it would kill brassicas.

Just make sure soil is good and dry and not sticky at all when you fit it and sow it and hope you don't get a gully washer 2 days later...:rolleyes:

Mike sent me a few pics of some of his GroundHog forage radish plots including these of a plot he nuked with roundup and then broadcasted GHFR seed.

Before

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/2010planting156.jpg

After...not so shabby! :way:

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/2010planting183.jpg

These are some of his GHFR in the ground 60 days now... :eek:

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/MikesGHFR2.jpg

Mike has tons of corn, soybeans and sugar beets so deer are not focusing on his radish plots yet but...they'll be there when the corn and beans are not...;)

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/MikesGHFR1.jpg

letemgrow
09-18-2010, 08:23 AM
Whoa!! Those are some big radishes!!

Thayer
09-19-2010, 10:58 AM
A person could miss quite a bit by not visiting here very often.

Thanks for all the info.

Have you tasted the GHR's? I did and the leaves were good...can't blame the deer for chowing on them. Never had a radish before...this year, I hope.

letemgrow
09-19-2010, 11:08 AM
One thing I learned from spraying and broadcasting into sod the same day...it can be difficult to get back in and broadcast the urea right before a rain if you don't live right on the property. I have been back 3-4 times since I scatter seeded but missed the rains each time.

I got great germination, but without the N, they are not doing nearly as well as they could be. This is where tilling and adding the fertilizer would have done much better.

Oats, groundhog forage radish and sunflowers, so far, I have not noticed any browse on the gfr or the sunflowers, but they are hitting the feed oats...go figure :D

http://i327.photobucket.com/albums/k445/pes1979/Habitat%20Improvements%20on%20the%20farm/FallPlot1.jpg

This was a weaker area so I broadcasted again a week or two ago and it took this time.

http://i327.photobucket.com/albums/k445/pes1979/Habitat%20Improvements%20on%20the%20farm/FallPlot.jpg

dbltree
09-19-2010, 02:53 PM
Have you tasted the GHR's? I did and the leaves were good...can't blame the deer for chowing on them

Heck...they haven't left me any to taste! :D

I have not noticed any browse on the gfr or the sunflowers, but they are hitting the feed oats...go figure :D

So I have noticed they seem to like the GHFR when they get bigger Phil, so that's good in this case that they are eating the oats and allowing the radish plants to get some growth on them.

I really like the cereal grain/radish combo...and yours are looking good! :way:

dbltree
09-20-2010, 04:16 PM
So far I have been very pleased at the ease with which the GroundHog forage radish germinates when overseeded on bare ground.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0011-1.jpg

I mixed GHFR with winter rye and here you can see both have germinated and are growing

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0013.jpg

These are only a week old so well behind the conventionally sown rye and radish mix but any growth and resulting feed is a plus so we'll keep an eye on it and see how it does as fall progresses... :way:

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0014-1.jpg

roadking
09-21-2010, 01:34 PM
When should I bcast my bean plots with rye? They are just starting to turn but still fairly green.

dbltree
09-21-2010, 02:00 PM
I would go ahead and get the rye put on since we have some rain in the forecast. As long as the leaves are starting to turn you should be about right to allow some sunlight in by the time the rye germinates and starts growing. :way:

dbltree
09-23-2010, 04:11 PM
We have received 5" of rain since Saturday and more in the forecast pushing us up near 30" above normal, more then double our normal rainfall for the year! Farmers are reporting yield 30-40% below normal but soybeans appear to have endured the heavy rains much better.

Just another reason not to put all your eggs in one basket and grow multiple crop types in each plot. Our clovers have absolutely thrived all year seemingly loving the cool wet weather and the cereal grain plantings this fall have largely done well thus far.

The brassicas are like the corn partially because they too love nitrogen and they need to "breathe" and cannot do so in waterlogged soils. Where ground is well drained they have lush full leaves...

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0008-2.jpg

But soils even a few inches lower are waterlogged and the brassicas are suffering...note the radical difference here from one side of the strip to the other.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0007-1.jpg

Some roots are healthy and growing like this GroundHog forage radish root

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0006-1.jpg

While I found others where the plant was dead and the root dead and rotting...nothing we can do about the weather, some areas are dry and begging for even a hint of rain while we are literally awash in water.

Diverse plantings insure we don't end up with nothing! Any crops can drown but clovers with shallow root systems not requiring nitrogen can do well as can cereal grains planted in early fall. Their root systems will not be that extensive yet making them less vulnerable to water logged soils and they are all well adapted to dry soils and weather.

Consider planting blocks of strips of different crops in each field so all bases are covered and deer are never without great food sources and you'll have a better chance of holding them on your property year around, year after year... :way:

dbltree
09-25-2010, 09:01 AM
I sprayed some grass that had invaded my brassicas in a couple spots...

Dead grass...healthy brassicas!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0013-1.jpg

Clethodim Label (http://www.cropsmart.net/Products/Clethodim/CropsmartClethodimLabel2008.pdf)

If your local ag co-op doesn't have clethodim on hand they can probably order it but here is a great online source where clethodim is priced very reasonably.

Clethodim source (http://www.ruralking.com/clethodim-1-gal.html)

Now that deer have cleaned up every last forage radish in the test strip...(and I mean they have licked the plate!)

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0012.jpg

They are starting on the rape plants....

Dwarf Essex Rape

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0004-2.jpg

Barnapoli Rape

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0003-2.jpg

at this point they have not touched the turnips and I would note that this makes this combination (forage radish, rape and turnips) ideal because with proper fertilization yields of all three can be higher then that if only rape and turnips were planted.

This also ensures that deer will feed in your plots from August til the last turnip is gone in late winter...the radish plants are a great way to acclimate deer to feeding on brassicas and also to adapt them to feeding in your plots and living on your land. Of course that isn't going to happen if you have not provided them with safe secure bedding areas as well.... :way:

dbltree
09-28-2010, 06:17 AM
Mike tells me that's a 12" boot next to this GroundHog forage radish root! :eek:

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/GHFRMike9-24.jpg

Look at the size of his Purple Top Turnips!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/PurpletopTurnipsMike9-24.jpg

and the leaves on his Rangi Rape are humongous!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/RangriRapeMike9-24.jpg

Always interesting to see what known species and varieties look like so if you have any to share please post em up and share the fruits of your labors in the brassica plots... :way:

roadking
09-28-2010, 07:22 AM
Looks like my Shot Plot will be finished growing this weekend. I assume once we get a frost they are finished growing?? They actually don't look to bad but I wish they were a little bigger.

dbltree
09-28-2010, 08:13 AM
Looks like my Shot Plot will be finished growing this weekend. I assume once we get a frost they are finished growing?? They actually don't look to bad but I wish they were a little bigger.

They can survive some light frosts and continue growing but of course have their limits so keep us posted on how low the temps get and if yours continue to grow...I suspect they will still put on some growth yet....:way:

dbltree
09-29-2010, 07:13 AM
Rich sent me some pics of his SE Iowa grown brassicas...a mix of turnips, Wintergreen's, sugarbeets and GroundHog forage radish

Great looking plot!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/RichBaughBrassicas.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/RB3.jpg

Turnips have done well!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/RB4.jpg

Guess they like GroundHog forage radish's at Rich's farm too!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/RB6GHFR.jpg

Rich is a Realtor for Whitetail properties and you can watch him take a great buck on Realtree TV that airs in early October....thanks for sharing the pics Rich!:way:

dbltree
10-03-2010, 12:52 PM
Every year I run across someone who planted their brassicas way to late for them to amount to anything,simply because they were not aware of how and when to plant them. In most of the upper Midwest and northern areas brassicas (rape and turnips) should be planted mid July through early August for optimum yields...a little earlier in far north and a little later as you move south.

I always shoot for no later then mid July here in SE Iowa which leaves brassicas looking like this by October 1st

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0023.jpg

Tall, healthy, lush well fed brassicas can produce a tremendous amount of high quality forage that will last well into early winter

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/BiologicMax10-10.jpg

Late August plantings however yield very little by comparison and no roots at all will develop

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0022.jpg

Earlier planted turnips can produce turnip roots the size of softballs and attract and hold deer well into late winter

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0010-2.jpg

There always new plotters coming along to which all of this seems foreign and brand new so for their sake it's important to bring this information up so they can see the difference.

The only exception to all of this is GroundHog forage radish because it can be planted with rye in late August and put on tremendous growth in 45 days, so we have multiple options when planting radishes.... :way:

dbltree
10-04-2010, 07:50 PM
I always find fair tests to be interesting so I am always trying a little something different to substantiate what I have already learned over the years. The brassica test plots this year being in a spot where previously deer refused to take so much as a nibble and eventually this...

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas9-15.jpg

turned to this...

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/FrozenbrassicasatHome.jpg

so one might expect to grow brassicas there simply to show what various varieties look like as they mature, however the GroundHog forage radish threw a monkey wrench in my plans, albeit a pleasant one.

The strip contained 3 different forage/tillage Daikon radishes, 2 varieties of rape and 4 varieties of turnips and since deer had grubbed the GHFR to the ground the previous fall it was no surprise when they did the same this year. What did surprise me is that after eating every lasts scrap of the forage radishes, roots and all...they started in on the rape plants!

Having adapted to feeding on the brassicas thanks to the radish plants deer have moved down the strip despite the presence of lush clover on one side and winter rye and peas on the other...leaving nothing but bare soil as they work their way up the strip.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0001-3.jpg

The ever dependable and inexpensive Dwarf Essex Rape is being grazed heavily now

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0005-3.jpg

as is the Barnapoli rape

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0006-3.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0007-3.jpg

While the Appin Turnips

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0008-3.jpg

and Pasja Turnips are largely untouched thus far

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0009-2.jpg

although if you look near the root on this plant you can see where they have been "taste testing" them also

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0010-2.jpg

Some things to consider...

If deer already demolish your brassicas then adding the forage radishes and fertilizing for high yields simply gives you more growth and more potential grazing starting a little earlier in the fall. The forage radish plants may (emphasis on "may") keep deer focused on them which will allow turnip plants to grow and stockpile feed for later in the season

If on the other hand deer have so far refused to touch your previous brassica plants, adding forage radishes to your mix could very well change their minds and adapt them to feeding on them.

Many landowners still make the mistake of planting one food source to attract deer at only one time of year and then further aggravate the situation by killing the deer feeding in that food source.

If on your way home from work you noticed a $20 bill by the side of the road, i suspect there are few who would not stop and pick it up. Suppose another 20 us there the next day and the following and each day after...would you ever stop taking that route??

If the twenties stopped, perhaps you might change your route or see if the cash was now somewhere else and if at some point the bills appear again months later, you might never know it having now adapted to a different route.

Could be there are lots of bills laying around and a small crowd stops each day to pick them up only one day shots ring out and that happens every time you stop there....would that 20 be worth risking your life for.

Hopefully that analogy gives you the idea...we want to adapt deer to feeding in safe places on our property by keeping food sources there year around and then to the extent possible harvest these deer in travel corridors away from the food source itself. I make an exception during the late muzzy season here in Iowa when gaunt hungry bucks make their way to food sources during day light hours.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Deer%20in%20brassicas/1buck4Turnip.jpg

Brassicas are just one tool in our food plot recipe and using a combination of radish, rape and turnips we can use them to keep deer well fed from August until well after the New Year.... :way:

risto2351
10-05-2010, 03:46 PM
Paul,
Don't forget mother nature.

I planted mine right on schedule and got 3" of rain and heat.

Replanted again and no rain.
Have growth but not as much as before.
Like you said though having a variety sure has helped and
next year I will plant even sooner. :way:




Every year I run across someone who planted their brassicas way to late for them to amount to anything,simply because they were not aware of how and when to plant them. In most of the upper Midwest and northern areas brassicas (rape and turnips) should be planted mid July through early August for optimum yields...a little earlier in far north and a little later as you move south.

I always shoot for no later then mid July here in SE Iowa which leaves brassicas looking like this by October 1st

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0023.jpg

Tall, healthy, lush well fed brassicas can produce a tremendous amount of high quality forage that will last well into early winter

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/BiologicMax10-10.jpg

Late August plantings however yield very little by comparison and no roots at all will develop

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0022.jpg

Earlier planted turnips can produce turnip roots the size of softballs and attract and hold deer well into late winter

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0010-2.jpg

There always new plotters coming along to which all of this seems foreign and brand new so for their sake it's important to bring this information up so they can see the difference.

The only exception to all of this is GroundHog forage radish because it can be planted with rye in late August and put on tremendous growth in 45 days, so we have multiple options when planting radishes.... :way:

dbltree
10-05-2010, 08:16 PM
I planted mine right on schedule and got 3" of rain and heat.

Replanted again and no rain.

Don't feel like the Lone Ranger Tony...myself and a lot of other folks had the exact same problem, I just had some that got plant a different day, slightly different soil etc. and they survived but it's been a tough year for brassicas in much of Iowa...;)

dbltree
10-09-2010, 10:24 PM
This buck couldn't resist hitting the GroundHog forage radish several days in a row...

http://i633.photobucket.com/albums/uu51/Imatreehugger/2010%20season/MDGC1355.jpg

http://i633.photobucket.com/albums/uu51/Imatreehugger/2010%20season/MDGC1397.jpg

http://i633.photobucket.com/albums/uu51/Imatreehugger/2010%20season/MDGC1396-1.jpg

and finally met his demise coming into the GHFR one time to many! The buck was taken by a very deserving lady and the harvest pics are posted on Outreach Outdoors.
Harvest Pics (http://www.outreachoutdoors.com/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=2851&start=10)

They have plenty of food sources of all kinds but he obviously loved the GHFR....right up to the end...http://www.michigan-sportsman.com/forum/images/smilies/wink.gif

HannibalBowhunter
10-11-2010, 09:04 PM
No rain here for almost 3 weeks and my brassicas are really wilting! Those huge leaves look like lettuce that has been left on the counter for several days! If we ever get rain - will they come back? Or are they in trouble once they start to go south.

dbltree
10-12-2010, 05:12 AM
No rain here for almost 3 weeks and my brassicas are really wilting! Those huge leaves look like lettuce that has been left on the counter for several days! If we ever get rain - will they come back? Or are they in trouble once they start to go south.

Depending on how extreme things get they will often send up new growth because the roots are deep into the moisture zone.

No rain in sight for SE Iowa though....;)

dbltree
10-16-2010, 11:16 AM
A friend of mine from back east sent this TC pic from his brassica plot....mentioned he planted the same brassica seed mix I do and obviously his deer approve! :D

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/BobsBrassicas.jpg

Looks like they are eagerly awaiting the apples to drop as well.... :way:

letemgrow
10-16-2010, 12:43 PM
A friend of mine from back east sent this TC pic from his brassica plot....mentioned he planted the same brassica seed mix I do and obviously his deer approve! :D


Looks like they are eagerly awaiting the apples to drop as well.... :way:

Now that is a great plot!! Apples and brassicas all in one spot.

Hat Trick
10-23-2010, 03:10 AM
This is my second year growing brassicas and boy did I learn a lot from last year. Last year the biggest turnips I saw were around the size of baseballs. They were nice, but they had too much rain and I planted them too thick. The deer still fed in them all winter. This year I had optimal growing conditions and well, I think these two pictures speak for themselves that I am doing something right.

*disclaimer* I do not work for frigid forage, they are a sponsor and I have agreed to share some tips and help them with producing some footage of do's and don'ts etc.

While this isn't the widest turnip I found this is a good representative of what is in my plots overall.

It's as big as a hat! Obviously the turnip weighs more so it sits on the grass deeper while the hat floats on the grass.

http://i709.photobucket.com/albums/ww98/HatTrick7/Food%20Plots/HatWTurnipFF.jpg

Just another angle to show the sheer size of them. Notice the hat is opened up nearly all the way.

http://i709.photobucket.com/albums/ww98/HatTrick7/Food%20Plots/TurniponTableFF.jpg

dbltree
10-23-2010, 01:13 PM
Some awesome looking turnips Hat Trick! :way:

October 23, 2010

I thought I had some darn nice Groundhog Forage Radish roots growing here in Iowa until...Mike sent a pic of his from WI...

Gieesh! :eek:

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/MIkeGHFRroot.jpg

Mike said he broke off 3-4" getting it out and of course the root hairs go down even deeper but either way there is a huge amount of tonnage in these things, not to mention the soil pulverizing that these babies are capable of!

This one has gotten huge and not too shabby for these old clay soils here at home

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/GHFRRoot.jpg

Few others at random out in the mixed brassica plots (planted mid July, rape, turnips and radish)

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0021-2.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0023.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0024-1.jpg

Now that the lush rye/radish plots are keeping the deer busy some of the roots are starting to sprout new foliage

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0016-2.jpg

The GHFR that I planted in June and fenced surprisingly is still lush and has not went to seed!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/GroundhogForageRadish.jpg

Tremendous amount of high quality forage and roots from these brassica plants that also scavenge nitrogen, pull up sub soil nutrients and loosen compacted soils to boot....hard to find fault with a crop like that.... ;)

dbltree
10-31-2010, 07:34 PM
The forecast called for a killing frost/freeze so I took pics of the Groundhog forage radish the day before....

This is the tallest plant of those planted in my garden area back in June

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0028.jpg

I tried to get a pic of the height of the root but I needed a second person to hold back the leaves

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0029.jpg

One root had some insect damage and broke off and I measured the top at roughly 4"

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0030.jpg

By now i think everyone is pretty much aware that all the Daikon forage radish seed is all the same...all VNS (Variety Not Stated) so while they have trademark names like groundhog, trophy or tillage....the actual seed and plants are virtually one in the same.

Still...I planted seed from all three at varying times in different plots, all of which has long ago been devoured. These are the last samples planted in the garden and you can see there is no difference in any aspect of these plants.

Groundhog

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0034.jpg

Trophy

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0033.jpg

Tillage

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0032.jpg

Next year when you order you forage radish seed...simply look for the least expensive option with the lowest shipping cost and you'll be good to go!

All these late plantings were done in early September BTW and I planted one row of GHFR next to one row of mixed brassicas (rape and turnips) just to compare height and growth rates and they are pretty much the same.

GHFR planted early September

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0038.jpg

Mixed brassicas planted early September

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0037.jpg

Despite crop fields littered with spilled grain and lush alfalfa 60 yards from out garden which is only feet from our house....deer have finally been stepping over the fence to forage on the GHFR

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0040.jpg

The tell tale tracks leave little doubt who the midnight raiders were....

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0041.jpg

October 29th we had temps down to 24 degrees and at daylight all our annual flowers were completely dead, yet the forage radish plants were barely wilted. I'll keep tabs on them this coming week or so and see how much cold weather they can take... :way:

dbltree
11-04-2010, 08:02 AM
There is....conventional till/planting, no-till planting and...no planting!

Conventional panting is still one of the most effective and common planting methods for most annual crops because it insures that the seed is placed at the correct depth and soil firmly pressed over and around the seed. The seed is in the soil moisture zone, germinates quickly and roots are able to reach nutrients and the plant grows rapidly.

No-till planting provides many of the same positives by utilizing a special coulter to cut through surface trash and till a very small path in front of that planter seed openers and packing wheels. Seed is still placed at the proper depth and effectively covered yet a great deal of time and expense saved with a simple one pass planting.

No planting (overseeding/broadcasting on untilled soil) requires virtually no equipment and the least expense but because seeds are on top of the soil there is often a high rate of failures. The seeds use up a great deal of energy attempting to send roots into the soil moisture area and without rain may not germinate at all. Frequently seeds may receive enough rainfall to germinate but then lack of continued moisture causes the seedling to die on the surface. Seeds are also exposed to predation by birds, rodents and even insects so there are many factors that can affect the success of a no planting type seeding.

When all conditions are prefect almost all seeds will germinate and grow when broadcast on the surface, but as we all know perfect weather conditions can not be predicted nor expected. Small seeds like brassicas and clovers tend to be more successful under difficult conditions then larger seeds and certain crop species work better then others. Winter rye tends to work better then oats or wheat for instance and under the right conditions peas and soybeans will germinate and grow far better then corn.

For food plot purposes clover, brassicas and cereal grains are the crops most commonly overseeded with no prior tillage and all can be successful plantings given acceptable weather conditions. We have all seen conventionally plant crops of all kinds fail because of adverse weather conditions and the odds of failure increase dramatically with overseeded non-planted crops.

Overseeding brassicas and/or rye into standing soybeans or corn is commonly done as the soil surface is already clean and seeds make soil/seed contact easily.

There often situations in areas inaccessible with equipment where no planting may be the only option and I have a degree of success by simply spraying sod grasses with roundup and broadcasting seeds as I did here with Groundhog forage radish.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/CIMG1787.jpg

This happened to be a very narrow strip along the soybeans that had grown up to weeds and not meant to be an actual "plot" but merely an example of the possibles.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/CIMG1792.jpg

While one can spray ahead of time I find the dying grasses and weeds give an element of protection at first by keeping seeds from being exposed to drying winds and sun. The vegetation slowly wilts and forms a form of mulch to help conserve surface moisture while the seedlings become established.

After seeds germinate and begin to grow then it is important to add nitrogen such as urea to the growing brassica plants although in this case I did not.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/CIMG1788.jpg

In this case the weed stubble helped protect the growing brassicas from being grazed until they began to reach far above the dead weed stubble.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/CIMG1790.jpg

Heavy clay soils or extremely droughty soils sometimes don't work as well as rich loamy soils for obvious reasons so every landowner may experience varying results year to year. I tend to use no planting only when overseeding into other crops, thin areas or inaccessible areas because yields/results are far better and dependable with conventional or no-till planting.

Tillage also allows for better incorporation of nitrogen to eliminate concerns about being at the mercy of the weather to incorporate the nitrogen. If seedlings struggle to long to reach moisture and nutrients they quickly become weak and permanently set back. Their attractiveness to whitetails then will be far less then healthy robust plants and I am unwilling to risk my entire habitat program by only no planting.

I do feel that everyone should take advantage of overseeding brassicas and rye into standing crops because the risk is minimal and the costs are very low. One already has a crop there so if the no planted seed doesn't do well it's not a total loss and with only seed and perhaps a little urea used, the costs are relatively low.

Give no planting a try next year in odd areas or standing crops and see how it works on your soils and then share your results with others.... :way:

dbltree
11-08-2010, 01:02 PM
November 8th, 2010

We've had freezing nights as low as 24 degrees and repeated hard freezing/frosts so it's always interesting to see what the various brassicas look like at this point.

The rape plants look healthy and dark green!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Rapeseed11-14.jpg

Barnapoli Rape...remember rape plants do not form a root like turnips and are solely for forage purposes

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/BarnapoliRape.jpg

Dwarf Essex Rape ....both rape varieties had been grazed

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/DER11-4.jpg

Appin Turnip tops

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/AppinTurnip11-4.jpg

Appin Turnip roots...not as large as Purple Tops

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/ApprinTurniproot11-4.jpg

Pasja Forage turnip (Hybrid) bred for forage rather then root production

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/PasjaTurnips.jpg

Pasja turnip root....relatively small

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/PasjaTurniproot11-4.jpg

Barkant Turnip top

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/BarkantTurnip11-4.jpg

Barkant turnip root...great tops and root production!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/BarkantTurniproot11-4.jpg

Purple Top Turnip tops...not quite as much forage as the other varieties

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/PurpleTopTurnip11-4.jpg

Purple Top Turnip root...great root production!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/PurpleTopTurniproot11-4.jpg

Once deer found the GroundHog forage radish in the garden they have begun to ravage the plants but they have been totally unaffected by the freezing weather.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/11-7-10GHFR.jpg

The September planted samples show the GHFR on the left being grazed and the mixed turnips and rape on the right not yet touched....I would recommend avoiding planting rape and turnips after late August and go with GHFR instead.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/11-7-10GHFRandturnips.jpg

In summary I think a good inexpensive brassica mix that everyone could reply on would be one that is made up of Purple Top turnips, Dwarf Essex Rape and Groundhog forage radish.

That mix would inexpensive, easily obtained, very reliable and would feed deer from August until the last turnip was eaten in late winter.

dbltree
11-23-2010, 10:02 AM
November 23rd, 2010

We're about to get night time temps down in the teens so it's always interesting to see how the brassicas do and how deer react to them. Obviously with temps into the 20's they have been well "frosted" and yet they still offer plenty of forage. These are pics from two different farms (they have been wiped out entirely at the third farm)

These were planted mid July, grazed heavily in late August and early September and then when the rye/pea/radish combo came on deer allowed the brassicas to recover and re-grow.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0012-1.jpg

The turnips have some substantial growth and these will be an important food source later this winter.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0011-3.jpg

The Groundhog Forage radish is still being grazed but also has recovered

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0013-2.jpg

and it will be interesting to see how the roots last compared to the turnips. One reason that the forage radish is so adept at loosening compacted soil is because the root decomposes rapidly after the plant dies and that leaves a channel in which water flows and the freezing/thawing action pulverizes the soil and leaves it loose and mellow.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0014-2.jpg

This brassica strip contains individual species and varieties with Dwarf Essex Rape and Barnapoli Rape being in the foreground here. Note also there is white clover on the left and the rye/forage pea/forage radish combo on the right so they have loads of lush food to choose from along with harvested soybean and corn fields around the corner.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0001-4.jpg

The have been grazed but not wiped out like the GHFR

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0004-3.jpg

The hybrid Appin and Pasja turnips still have awesome foliage that would be very attractive if deer were interested in them. They have so much feed on this farm that they have not touched them as of yet

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0003-3.jpg

By contrast the Purple Top turnips have little forage but great root production making them a better component for late season food sources.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0002-3.jpg

Last fall we had temps down into the low teens in early November and that did the brassicas in a little earlier but this year they will last well into December. As soon as the plants wilt and die I'll dig up some roots and see what we ended up with for growth... ;)

Nontypcl1
11-23-2010, 10:15 AM
Looking nice! I wish all my turnips still looked like that. One plot that is more secluded has been wiped out. No foliage, no stems and turnips and radishes eaten to the ground. The other plot, which is a little more open has been getting hit hard recently. There is still a lot left and I hope it can hold through till late season. I don't think I can plant enough of those things. We'll have to see next year. I plan on overseeding 5 acres of soybeans with em.:D

dbltree
11-25-2010, 01:44 PM
I plan on overseeding 5 acres of soybeans with em

Keep us posted on how that works out next fall! :way:

November 25th, 2010

The temp. dropped to 14 degrees this morning which took the forage radish from "frosted" to "froze"

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0001-1.jpg

I kept these somewhat protected by planting them in the garden next to the house but deer finally discovered them and have been chowing down.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0002.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0005.jpg

Unlike the rich black prairie soils Iowa is known for, we live on very poor clay subsoil that was once woodland habitat. I hauled in some top soil for or garden but it's only a few inches deep yet the Groundhog forage radish thrived by adding urea to give it plenty of nitrogen.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0006-1.jpg

I decided to dig one of the forage radish roots up and see what it looked like?

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0007-2.jpg

You can see the hard clay soil that I had to literally chip away from the root but it still had grown downward about 10" and of course way beyond that with the actual tap root.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0008.jpg

I finally chiseled the root out of the rock hard soil and measured it at around 20", note how the root is somewhat bulging where it tried to push it's way down but grew outward as it did.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0012.jpg

The actual root mass far exceeds that of most turnips which is interesting and of course the benefits to the soil are also much greater then with other brassicas.

For those that have had trouble getting deer to eat brassicas, the forage radishes are helpful in getting them to accept them. I planted some forage radish in a row and mixed brassicas in a row right beside them. Deer previously refused to eat the common brassicas but once they started feeding on the GHFR, they eventually started on the other brassicas.

GHFR...

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0004.jpg

Mixed brassicas

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0003.jpg

Regardless of which brassica seed mix you choose next summer I would consider adding GroundHog Forage Radish to your planting because it is not only irresistible to whitetails but also has awesome soil building attributes as well.... :way:

bowhuntr311
11-26-2010, 08:40 PM
Dbltree, you never stop amazing me with your comparisons and indepth analysis of food plots. Amazing write up as usual.

If you were going to "classify" GHFR in terms of seasons, would you call it an "early season brassica"? Seems you talk about the deer getting into these earlier than the rest of the rapes and turnips.

dbltree
11-28-2010, 08:15 AM
Dbltree, you never stop amazing me with your comparisons and indepth analysis of food plots. Amazing write up as usual.

If you were going to "classify" GHFR in terms of seasons, would you call it an "early season brassica"? Seems you talk about the deer getting into these earlier than the rest of the rapes and turnips.

The Groundhog Forage Radish is really a very versatile brassica because it is fast growing it is one of the few that can be effective planted with winter rye. On the other hand because it doesn't mature and go to seed quickly it can also be planted with rape and turnips in mid July.

It grows roughly to the same heights as the other brassicas and produces a tremendous amount of root tonnage (I think more then turnips possibly).

The difference is that deer love it...why I can't say but obviously it simply tastes better which makes it a little like soybeans, it's possible they could wipe it out if planted alone.

Mixing it with other brassicas (or winter rye) seems to be the most effective way to utilize GHFR because they will focus on it and allow the other brassicas to grow.

So I guess you could say it is both early and late season....pretty adaptable! :)

dbltree
11-29-2010, 07:29 AM
Year 1 B ---> M ----C
Year 2 M ---> B ----C
Year 3 B ---> M ----C
Year 4 M ---> B ----C (plant white clover with the rye mix "M")
Year 5 M---> B ---> C ---> (the previous year clover planting becomes the new -C-)

This is kind of a good explanation of a crop rotation between white clover (C), brassicas (B) and the winter rye/oats/forage peas/forage radish/ red or white clover mix (M)

Each year the brassicas and mix are rotated while the perennial white clover remains as is but when the white clover starts to thin and needs to be rotated we rotate ALL the strips.

To prepare we start our white clover with rye the fall preceding the complete rotation, then in year 5 we turn under the old clover strips and plant brassicas. We move the rye mix to the brassicas and of course the previous rye strips are now perennial white clover.

A 5 year rotation is shown but it could be a 3 or 4 year rotation if for some reason the clover thinned earlier. ALL of the strips or blocks would have some type of clover in them during the summer months (brassicas tilled under and planted to annual clovers and red or white clovers planted with the rye)

Under this rotation our soils are NEVER bare an unproductive expect for a few days while seeds germinate. Deer are NEVER without feed...year around! We always have all of our favorite crops/plants in any plots and yet disease and pests will not be a problem.

Weeds are far less likely to be a problem either because these crops either suffocate weeds or prevent them from growing....:)

risto2351
11-29-2010, 08:44 AM
Keep us posted on how that works out next fall! :way:

November 25th, 2010

The temp. dropped to 14 degrees this morning which took the forage radish from "frosted" to "froze"

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0001-1.jpg

I kept these somewhat protected by planting them in the garden next to the house but deer finally discovered them and have been chowing down.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0002.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0005.jpg

Unlike the rich black prairie soils Iowa is known for, we live on very poor clay subsoil that was once woodland habitat. I hauled in some top soil for or garden but it's only a few inches deep yet the Groundhog forage radish thrived by adding urea to give it plenty of nitrogen.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0006-1.jpg

I decided to dig one of the forage radish roots up and see what it looked like?

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0007-2.jpg

You can see the hard clay soil that I had to literally chip away from the root but it still had grown downward about 10" and of course way beyond that with the actual tap root.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0008.jpg

I finally chiseled the root out of the rock hard soil and measured it at around 20", note how the root is somewhat bulging where it tried to push it's way down but grew outward as it did.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0012.jpg

The actual root mass far exceeds that of most turnips which is interesting and of course the benefits to the soil are also much greater then with other brassicas.

For those that have had trouble getting deer to eat brassicas, the forage radishes are helpful in getting them to accept them. I planted some forage radish in a row and mixed brassicas in a row right beside them. Deer previously refused to eat the common brassicas but once they started feeding on the GHFR, they eventually started on the other brassicas.

GHFR...

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0004.jpg

Mixed brassicas

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Forage%20Radish/IMG_0003.jpg

Regardless of which brassica seed mix you choose next summer I would consider adding GroundHog Forage Radish to your planting because it is not only irresistible to whitetails but also has awesome soil building attributes as well.... :way:

Paul,

Will the deer still keep on eating the leaves even though they are wilting with the cold temps or start going for the tubulars?


I see they are eating my tops now but still have a bunch left to eat.

Thanks.

dbltree
11-29-2010, 08:45 PM
Will the deer still keep on eating the leaves even though they are wilting with the cold temps or start going for the tubulars?

I see they are eating my tops now but still have a bunch left to eat

Usually but it depends on what other food sources they have of course...;)

nannyslayer
12-01-2010, 10:40 PM
Pulled a purple top out of my plot yesterday while checking a camera. Planted August 7th, ended up putting on 150lbs of actual N, and 39-39-39 over the whole plot. So in all, it got 189lbs of N. From what I have seen with past experience, if your turnips are planted a little later, and you pour the N to them, they will still produce a decent crop, take it moisture is there.

http://i232.photobucket.com/albums/ee299/nannyslayer/IMG00096-20101130-1601.jpg

nannyslayer
12-01-2010, 10:43 PM
One this if for sure though, I WILL be trying some radish's next year. :way:

Everything I have seen here has me convinced that they would work great in my area, and I bet the deer will love them.

dbltree
12-02-2010, 01:02 AM
Dang that's bigun Brian! 189lbs of N...gieesh...and I though I was bad! :D

SEIowaDeerslayer
12-02-2010, 07:54 AM
One this if for sure though, I WILL be trying some radish's next year. :way:

Everything I have seen here has me convinced that they would work great in my area, and I bet the deer will love them.

X2. Radishes and rye are getting broadcasted into the beans next year.

nannyslayer
12-03-2010, 12:09 AM
Dang that's bigun Brian! 189lbs of N...gieesh...and I though I was bad! :D


I get to sweep the floors in the fertilizer buildings. :D

bowhuntr311
12-03-2010, 06:46 PM
It grows roughly to the same heights as the other brassicas and produces a tremendous amount of root tonnage (I think more then turnips possibly).

So by looking at the pictures I could easily see the possibilty of equal or more tonnage. Im all about the tonnage due to lack of space. Heres where my thought process is going with the radishs. By looking at the pictures the radishs look "carrot" shaped. As far as the deer eating the root itself it would appear they would break at groundlevel leaving 1/2 in the dirt? Now the majority of foodplots are planted in poor blow sand, however if the ground freezes Nov. 1st which is reasonable I doubt the deer are going to be able to get the other half. When I get decent turnips the deer will either "dish" them out or they are able to pop them out whole.
Do you think your going to lose a certain percentage of the crop (root) to broken off plants?


Mixing it with other brassicas (or winter rye) seems to be the most effective way to utilize GHFR because they will focus on it and allow the other brassicas to grow.


What sort of seeding rate would you do if mixing GHFR with rye? Usual planting dates for rye for me is right around labor day, although after speaking with several other avid food plotters in the area sounds like more people are planthing closer to august 15th to try to get more tonnage out the rye. Thier saying the rye is 6-8in tall by first frost, where mine is usually 2inches. Any thoughts or comments about the taller rye?

dbltree
12-07-2010, 03:54 PM
The part of the root that stays in the ground they are unlikely to dig out but that part is useful for breaking up soil compaction.

Our rye and oats got nearly knee high and they have eaten it almost to the ground so you could no doubt plant a little earlier!

December 7th, 2010

Temps have been down around 10 to 15 degrees at night for awhile now which has nuked everything not winter hardy.

The brassicas are pretty well frozen now, leaving them somewhat flattened

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0005-4.jpg

The rape plants are still being grazed however

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0006-4.jpg

and these GroundHog forage radishes in the garden are still being attacked nightly

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/GHFR12-5.jpg

It's a little easier to see the roots now that the forage is wilted and while there are plenty of Purple Top turnips

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0007-4.jpg

the Barkant turnips seem to be larger

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0008-4.jpg

The brassicas in my larger plots have been mowed to the ground some time ago but here where they are a little "finickier" they cleaned up the GHFR early on, then worked on the rape plants and left the turnip tops untouched. We'll see how long before they hit the turnip roots in this plot.

View of the "strip" plot....clover in the foreground, brassicas in the center and the rye combination in the background.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/IMG_0003.jpg

While this plot is to small to feed deer year around the concept works like a charm when grown on a larger scale and insures whitetails will always be feeding in this same spot all year long and not....the neighbors.... ;)

dbltree
12-17-2010, 07:34 PM
December 18th, 2010

Remember these brassicas....August 30th?

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0221.jpg

Today...wiped out!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0014-3.jpg

2 acres worth!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0015-1.jpg

200#'s of urea and 400#'s of 6-24-24 at planting...devoured!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0021.jpg

They are still working on the roots but they aren't going to last long

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0023-1.jpg

Fortunately the winter rye/pea/radish combination is taking up the slack in the strip plots

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0026.jpg

and they have the second round of forage radish roots to clean up yet

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Cereal%20Grains/IMG_0016-1.jpg

It's often hard to predict or be certain of how long and food source we plant might last and therein lies yet another problem when landowners plant one food source in this field and another in a different field. Deer adapt to feeding one place, then run out of feed and abandon that spot leaving stands and blinds unproductive. They then start new and often unpredictable patterns that leave hunters frustrated and disappointed. To the extent possible utilize one central field or food plot area and plant multiple food sources that are capable of feeding, holding and adapting deer to using not only that field but the same runways day after day, year after year.

How are your brassicas? Any left? Tops...roots? Did deer use them a little...a lot or never touch them? If not used what where they feeding on nearby?

2 out of 3 farms they wiped out the brassicas, the third they killed the GHFR early, grazed the rape plants but as of yet have not touched the turnips. They do however have acres of corn and bean stubble to pick through along with the rye combination strips... ;)

Jetboatgreg
12-20-2010, 07:01 PM
Here in Northeast Pa i am experiencing the same results...I cked my brassica plots this weekend and most all the greens are gone. Although there is a considerable amount of turnips and forage radish that are still in the ground..some nibbled on other not touched.

We have also had below normal cold here...but no or just a skiff of snow. The turnips are all "frozen". I still have some corn left and they are still hitting that. So it will be interesting to see if they start foraging later in the year on the remaining turnips.

Greg

dbltree
12-22-2010, 06:37 AM
Mike sent a couple pics from WI of deer out in his strips of soybeans, sugar beets and Groundhog Forage radish/Purple Top turnip plantings....getting lot's of attention right now!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Deer%20in%20brassicas/MikesBeansRadishplots.jpg

Good chance Mike may have a successful late season hunt!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/Deer%20in%20brassicas/MikesDecemberplots.jpg

Mike is wise and plants multiple crops that keep deer fed all winter and he notes that right now they are hitting the above mentioned crops and not touching his corn yet. One advantage of multiple crop species is that they may leave one source at first which allows it so be "stockpiled" for when they are in dire need.

Lot of winter yet in WI so I have no doubt his corn will eventually be stripped bare as well... ;)

dbltree
01-01-2011, 08:41 AM
Hard to believe the once lush brassicas of summer...

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/BarnapoliRape.jpg

have now been reduced to this....

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0002-4.jpg

Yet there is still plenty of valuable and nutritious feed available under the snow

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0001-5.jpg

and it's pretty obvious that I am not the only one who is aware of that...

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0004-4.jpg

The brassicas tops even though frozen and matted against the ground are still providing plenty of food.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0003-4.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0005-5.jpg

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0006-5.jpg

The Ground Hog forage radish roots, many the size (in diameter) of a baseball bat appear to have been consumed first leaving the turnip roots as the next choice for dinner

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0018.jpg

The ground is matted with tracks

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0019.jpg

and some turnip roots are laying on top where deer pulled them up as they ate the tops

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0020.jpg

Turnips are not highly favored forage and rank dead last behind the radish and rape/canola foliage but that is a good thing! If deer focus on other food sources and allow the turnips to grow they will be rewarded in mid winter when they need it most.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0021-1.jpg

In southern areas where there are mild or no winters, turnips may not be a necessary part of a brassica mix but in the north they are an excellent source of feed for the winter months and become then....a crucial tool in providing food sources for our whitetails all year long. A combination of food sources that together provide year around attraction is what adapts whitetails to living on and around our property, it's what keeps them using the exact same runways, day after day, year after year and makes their actions for the most part...completely predictable.

Brassicas alone can never provide year around feed but they can be used in combination with other crops such as clover, winter rye, soybeans etc. and those combination can be rotated to make disease and pests a non-issue. Don't make the mistake then of planting only brassicas..include other great crops in the same field/plot in strips or sections that allow for easy rotation.

You'll be amazed at the difference you see in deer numbers in only a few short years... ;)

dbltree
01-04-2011, 12:32 PM
January 4th, 2011

There are often many trains of thought regarding the use of turnips in a brassica mix or in a habitat program period. If deer eat rape and radish early on then why add turnips? Often deer may not focus on turnip tops as well as the more palatable rape/canola and radish plants during the forage/grazing season leading some to believe that planting turnips is a waste of time and effort.

My own experience has been that turnips can be a crucial element in holding and adapting whitetails to our properties by helping to provide the sometimes missing link during difficult winter months. Planting a radish/rape/turnip mix in mid summer then works very well as deer focus first on the forage radish, then on the rape and in doing so allow the turnips to grow and yield large tuberous roots. This is a form of "stockpiling" that livestockmen often utilize and the same principle can be used in our habitat programs.

Any crop that can produce enough winter feed can work well including corn, soybeans, milo and sugar beets but often those crops get decimated early on and even if fenced at first may not be able to provide a food source all winter. Winter rye is very helpful because it stays green under the snow but it to may be grazed to the ground and not able to provide significant forage in mid winter.

Turnips...if not decimated early on can fit perfectly into our habitat program and keep deer on our property as well as keeping them fat and healthy through the most challenging winter weather. My friend Rich sent some pics of one of his turnip/radish plots recently and commented on the unbelievable amount of feed there!

This is a summer view

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/RichBaughBrassicas.jpg

and this is the plot now

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/RichTurnips2.jpg

More feed then they can possibly eat it appears!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/RichTurnips1.jpg

Rich notes that while they are eating both turnip and radish roots they appear to be concentrating on the turnip roots at this point and he has been culling does from large groups of deer that gather every evening to feed on the turnips.

If you haven't tried brassicas consider adding a small area to see how your deer react to them, sometimes it takes several years for them to adapt to them and other times they decimate them before season. Adding Ground Hog forage radish usually cause deer to focus on the radish tops early, adapting them to feeding there and exposing them to the rape and turnips.

A good mix to start with that is inexpensive and very productive might include the following:

5#'s Ground Hog forage radish
3#'s Purple Top Turnip
2#'s Dwarf Essex RapeAlways check locally for seed but here is a source if you need one that is reasonably priced and will sell seed by the pound.

Welter Seed & Honey (http://www.welterseed.com/productItems.aspx?id=3&org=0)

One can play with seeding rates and experiment but that is guideline that can work well for most landowners. Plan on using 80-100#'s of actual nitrogen per acre for best yields and don't forget to take advantage of the turnips in the late seasons to trim your deer numbers if need be.... ;)

dbltree
01-20-2011, 02:47 PM
January 20th, 2011

Funny how when the snow piles up and them temps drop to below zero...."finicky" deer seem to like turnips after all! :D

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0001-6.jpg

They have been scratching around for the turnips pretty steady in the test plot where they ate the GHFR in September, the rape in November and now....they are finding the turnips pretty tasty in January

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0003-5.jpg

Plenty of roots left to eat too...amazing how much feed there is when you fertilize and grow a good crop

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0002-5.jpg

The combination of forage radish, forage rape and turnips work well together and when planted beside other crops such as clover and rye...we end up with all year food sources that keep deer from visiting the neighbors....and then not returning... ;)

651
01-22-2011, 01:35 PM
5#'s Ground Hog forage radish
3#'s Purple Top Turnip
2#'s Dwarf Essex Rape

Per acre correct?

dbltree
01-23-2011, 07:31 AM
5#'s Ground Hog forage radish
3#'s Purple Top Turnip
2#'s Dwarf Essex Rape

Per acre correct?

Yes....and to that I apply 300-400#'s of 6-24-24 and 200#'s of urea (46-0-0) nitrogen for best results. I plant in strips....brassicas, winter rye, brassicas, winter rye...and then rotate them each year.

This is the mix I plant to rotate brassicas too because the red clover will help furnish a portion of the nitrogen needed by the brassicas and the rye and radishes will help pullup subsoil potassium.

Winter rye 50-80#'s per acre (56#'s = a bushel)
Spring oats 80-120#'s per acre (32#'s = a bushel)
Austrian Winter Peas 20-80#'s per acre (4010 or 6040 field peas will work fine for 1/2 the price)
Groundhog Forage Radish 5#'s per acre
Red Clover 8-12#'s per acre or white clover at 6#'s per acre


I also make sure I have some white clover and then the combination of ALL these crops in ONE place will help hold and adapt deer to your property by providing all they need year around.:way:

651
01-23-2011, 12:14 PM
Thanks!!!!!!

dbltree
01-25-2011, 08:33 AM
January 25th, 2011

I checked the brassica strips in another field recently and deer were hitting them pretty hard.

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0013-3.jpg

Anyplace there are some turnips or tops left they are scratching for them!

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0011-4.jpg

Interesting to is that there is standing corn not far away

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0009-3.jpg

Brassicas that include turnips in the mix really help to keep deer adapted to using our feeding areas all year long

http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e288/dbltree/Brassicas/IMG_0012-2.jpg

This spring we'll plant these brassica strips to annual clovers and then till that under in late August to plant the winter rye combination and move the brassica strips to the rye strips where there is red clover planted now...perfect rotation that allows us to have so many great food sources all in one field! :way: