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Switchgrass experiment, thoughts?

Rous14

Member
Definitely thinking about season this fall and can’t wait but also thinking of next steps of habitat management on my farm that I want to get to.
I have a lot of areas on the farm that have pretty large sections of worthless trees (had forester out, believe he said they are silver maple but don’t quote me on that) that are probably 6-7” in diameter and tightly bunched. Very little if any sunlight reaching the floor so not a lot of undergrowth, mostly just exposed dirt with little weed competition.
Question is, this winter early spring if I get a bunch of those trees tipped over by either felling them or hinge cutting them or combo of both and immediately frost seed switch into the mess, any chance it’ll take or do you think by next summer the weeds will go crazy and over take it before it ever gets established?
Any thoughts or experience on how to pull it off possibly?
 

Wi transplant

PMA Member
Personally I would hinge areas /clumps. Of them and put in switch (properly) in between / around these areas. Cut out areas where switch will go and 1day with a dozer push out stumps. And prep for switch. Be able to spray around areas of hinge cut would help drastically with switch establishment!! And in 2 years you would have an awsome bedding area!!!

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Asclepias

New Member
You would need a way to get the broadleaves knocked back. So you could get sunlight down to the establishing grass seedlings. Best bet would be a broadleaf herbicide in season. Never heard of this method being done, but I would thing getting fire through there in year 2 and three would help. Good luck!
 

IowaBowHunter1983

Super Moderator
Staff member
Few things.... silver maple arn't premium trees but are far from worthless.

They typically like wet areas. Make sure anything you plant can handle sight conditions.

If you get to cutting they may sprout like crazy if not treated.
 

Rous14

Member
Few things.... silver maple arn't premium trees but are far from worthless.

They typically like wet areas. Make sure anything you plant can handle sight conditions.

If you get to cutting they may sprout like crazy if not treated.
....they may sprout like crazy if not treated”
What might? Just want to make sure I’m following ya
 

Rous14

Member
Personally I would hinge areas /clumps. Of them and put in switch (properly) in between / around these areas. Cut out areas where switch will go and 1day with a dozer push out stumps. And prep for switch. Be able to spray around areas of hinge cut would help drastically with switch establishment!! And in 2 years you would have an awsome bedding area!!!

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Thanks, it always looks perfect in my mind haha, but not sure I can execute it to make it like I picture it. I think I could keep the weeds managed decent w a broad leaf spray but I don’t think I could get the stumps removed. But I also don’t think the stumps would stop the deer from bedding in it as long as the switch was a decent stand. I’m also picturing many of the hinge cut tops laying in the switch but again not sure if it will work or not. The large stands of silver maple are very barren as far as the undergrowth so worse case scenario it should thicken up w natives even if the switch doesn’t establish.
 

Oct-Lull

Well-Known Member
I would say silvers would stay alive a while if hinged properly. Not sure that's a benefit. I am not saying its a horrible idea but I would do a cost benefit. Switch isn't cheap and I would venture just spreading and doing minimal work wouldn't get you real far. Site prep is key to a good stand. I woulf also say even if its a 1/4 acre spraying it would be a job and likely not be as effective as you might like. After all that if you do it take some good pictures and document it because I would be interested in seeing the result either way

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Rous14

Member
I would say silvers would stay alive a while if hinged properly. Not sure that's a benefit. I am not saying its a horrible idea but I would do a cost benefit. Switch isn't cheap and I would venture just spreading and doing minimal work wouldn't get you real far. Site prep is key to a good stand. I woulf also say even if its a 1/4 acre spraying it would be a job and likely not be as effective as you might like. After all that if you do it take some good pictures and document it because I would be interested in seeing the result either way

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Will do. Thanks for the input Oct-lull
 

Tmayer13

PMA Member
Another idea if you just after some bedding, would be to run a fire through this fall to just get rid of anything there, then you hinge the trees and just see what comes up next year. You may very well have some good natives in there that are just not getting any sunlight to germinate. Then see how that works and make plans accordingly in years to come...if burning isnt an option, id bet just by hinging you will still get some decent weed or native growth and either would serve the purpose of a bedroom
 
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