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Old 04-12-2018, 09:43 PM   #1
Mousehunter
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Default Dreaming of food plots and equipment

I have messed arround with food plots for years, but honestly with minimal results. Looking for a fresh start. Eventually would like to plant 20+ acres. Right now have a few acres cleaned, fenced, and ready to go. In addition to deer, would love to boost dove hunting as well.

My tractor is pretty much toast, most of its implements have been either stolen or vandalized. Do have a Kubota 900 UTV-so either focusing on using it, or replacing the tractor.

So with a somewhat realistic budget (no new 100hp tractor is in my future). What would you want to plant and how would you want to plant it-including crop rotations.
—-
Fwiw seriously considering a UTV based 2 row planter, and or a no-till drill. Both are still a lot cheaper than a new tractor. Oil sunflowers via the row planter, not sure of the mix of soybean, ic peas, corn, and millet. In theory the row planter can handle them all, so not sure if the no till is needed (unless I want to add in small seed cover crops like clover

My soil is mostly sandy. I do have some better soil in one field, but it would need massive clearing to use and is probably the worse location due to roads. Only redeaming value is that it is above a good duck tank-seed run off would make duck hunting better.
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Old 04-12-2018, 09:51 PM   #2
Low Fence
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Planting with atv/ Utv is limited to smaller fall plots.... unless you have limitless time. 20+Acres would take week

There are tons of awesome threads in what to plant. But a tractor is almost a must to produce plots that actually work worth the time and money
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Old 04-12-2018, 10:47 PM   #3
BolilloLoco
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I plant 5acres with a MF383, shredder, disc, tiller, seed spreader and drag. No way I would attempt it with a UTV. Gotta have a tractor for 20acres. And some good implements. No till drill is awesome. But not mandatory.
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Old 04-12-2018, 10:55 PM   #4
muddyz
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Seems like you could get a tractor, shedder and a tiller or disc for less than 10k if you aren’t attracted to new, shiny ones.
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Old 04-12-2018, 10:56 PM   #5
Mousehunter
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My current tractor is a Ford 3000. I really don’t know exactly how bad it’s problems are. That said while it is theoretically 50hp tractor, it only had 1700lbs of lift on the 3pt new, and no power down. I never had much luck using it with our disk plow. It could probably run a 3 row planter, maybe a tiny no till. The UTV however is a brute (for what it is).

Someone stole the nuts off my disk plow (left the bolts), and the PTO shaft off my shredder. Currently using a skid steer for most of the jobs the tractor did. It is currently my digging, clearing, and shredding machine (hydro shears does wonders on mesquite). It is not as fast as a tractor, but the little 3000 was not that fast anyway.

Last edited by Mousehunter; 04-12-2018 at 11:10 PM.
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Old 04-12-2018, 11:10 PM   #6
Low Fence
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mousehunter View Post
My current tractor is a Ford 3000. I really donít know exactly how bad itís problems are. That said while it is theoretically 50hp tractor, it only had 1700lbs of lift on the 3pt new, and no power down. I never had much luck using it with our disk plow. It could probably run a 3 row planter, maybe a tiny no till. The UTV however is a brute (for what it is).

Someone stole the nuts off my disk plow (left the bolts), and the PTO shaft off my shredder. Currently using a skid steer for most of the jobs the tractor did.
1700 lift is 1700 better than 0 of a utv. That would lift any 6-7í disk Iíve ever seen. I completely understand having to improvise but major plots without a functioning tractor ainít happening. I have a no till and still plant 90% of my wildlife plots with disk
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Old 04-12-2018, 11:20 PM   #7
Drycreek3189
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My heavy duty Land Pride disc only weighs 1200 lb. No need for down pressure if you set your gangs right. Fix your tractor and save the UTV for what it was made for. Twenty acres gonna get old quick with a UTV. My two cents. A disc, cyclone type spreader, and a homemade tire drag will plant anything you want to plant.
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Old 04-13-2018, 12:49 AM   #8
Chew
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Where are you located Mousehunter?
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Old 04-13-2018, 06:25 AM   #9
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And if you get a row planter you will need seed plates for each size seed you want to plant.
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Old 04-13-2018, 06:50 AM   #10
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Maybe you should make a couple little plots this spring and get your tractor fixed up for the fall. The disc you got must be a biggun or it’s got some bearings out cause that tractor ought to pull a 6 ft disc in dry dirt.
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Old 04-13-2018, 07:22 AM   #11
Bowtech38
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You could rent a tractor. You around the temple area?
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Old 04-13-2018, 12:13 PM   #12
Ironman
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A ford 3000 is plenty. Like others said, get a spreader and disk or tiller. Make a drag and you're set. I personally like a pull behind spreader so I'm not doing everything with the 3 point. One less time changing implements. I use my JD Gator to broadcast seed and fertilizer. Throw the bags in the back and keep filling and broadcasting.
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Old 04-13-2018, 01:33 PM   #13
Mousehunter
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I got a drag harrow for landscape work, have not used it for planting yet. Will defiantly look into a tow behind spreader (pretty sure the one stolen was 3pt), the receiver spreader (for corn feeding) did not throw all that well, and I did not want to run fertilizer through it anyway.

Local seed shop recommended disk, broadcast, and drag. He liked rows, but not for deer mix, and not really for small areas. Of course his solution is just increase your seeding rates... easy solution for a seed dealer.
—-
Will start pestering my Tractor guys again to see when they have time to mess with a project...
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Old 04-13-2018, 01:47 PM   #14
yotethumper
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If you are planting that much I would not use an ATV or UTV. You will cause wear and tear on them.

I would fix your tractor, its an investment. Or I would find a buddy with the right equipment and borrow or rent through him.
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Old 04-13-2018, 02:13 PM   #15
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Tillers are better on a smaller tractor. I can't recall any tractor that has power down on 3 point till you get REALLY big, and very few of those have it. It is the weight of equipment that helps. FOr 20 acres you need at least 8' equipment, and that means 65 hp and up.

You can do a good plot with a 5-6' tiller, pto spreader, and a drag harrow of some kind.

I would plant in strips, instead of mixing seeds. You can go back and shred some or all the sunflowers, then have other areas ready for winter food plot.
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Old 04-13-2018, 02:16 PM   #16
Drycreek3189
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mousehunter View Post
I got a drag harrow for landscape work, have not used it for planting yet. Will defiantly look into a tow behind spreader (pretty sure the one stolen was 3pt), the receiver spreader (for corn feeding) did not throw all that well, and I did not want to run fertilizer through it anyway.

Local seed shop recommended disk, broadcast, and drag. He liked rows, but not for deer mix, and not really for small areas. Of course his solution is just increase your seeding rates... easy solution for a seed dealer.
ó-
Will start pestering my Tractor guys again to see when they have time to mess with a project...
Your seeding rate does need to be increased when broadcasting but only because some of it is bound to stay on top and birds, crows, and squirrells will eat it.

My procedure goes like this:
Spray for vegetation if necessary, wait about a week to insure a good burn-down.
Disc the dead vegetation under until the plot is fluffy.
Drag the plot smooth (this somewhat packs the surface giving you a firm seedbed).
Adjust my disc gangs one position off of straight and disc just enough to cut shallow grooves in the soil.
Spread your seed and fertilizer according to recommendations.
Drag your plot once again. This will sweep most of the seeds into the "grooves" that you cut with the disc.
If you have a roller or cultipacker, run that over the plot. This is not necessary, but I like to use a cultipacker, since I have one.

This procedure has worked for me many times in the past, and all you need is a tractor, disc, broadcast seeder, and a tire drag you can make for the cost of the chain that holds it together. I have them on every place I plant. I also have the store bought drag from Tractor Supply and I prefer the tire drag.
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Old 04-13-2018, 02:46 PM   #17
gingib
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drycreek3189 View Post
Your seeding rate does need to be increased when broadcasting but only because some of it is bound to stay on top and birds, crows, and squirrells will eat it.

My procedure goes like this:
Spray for vegetation if necessary, wait about a week to insure a good burn-down.
Disc the dead vegetation under until the plot is fluffy.
Drag the plot smooth (this somewhat packs the surface giving you a firm seedbed).
Adjust my disc gangs one position off of straight and disc just enough to cut shallow grooves in the soil.
Spread your seed and fertilizer according to recommendations.
Drag your plot once again. This will sweep most of the seeds into the "grooves" that you cut with the disc.
If you have a roller or cultipacker, run that over the plot. This is not necessary, but I like to use a cultipacker, since I have one.

This procedure has worked for me many times in the past, and all you need is a tractor, disc, broadcast seeder, and a tire drag you can make for the cost of the chain that holds it together. I have them on every place I plant. I also have the store bought drag from Tractor Supply and I prefer the tire drag.
Correct me if I am wrong but disking brings new weed seed. So what is the point of spraying if you are going to disk anyways?

I do either or
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Old 04-13-2018, 03:26 PM   #18
Ironman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mousehunter View Post
I got a drag harrow for landscape work, have not used it for planting yet. Will defiantly look into a tow behind spreader (pretty sure the one stolen was 3pt), the receiver spreader (for corn feeding) did not throw all that well, and I did not want to run fertilizer through it anyway.

Local seed shop recommended disk, broadcast, and drag. He liked rows, but not for deer mix, and not really for small areas. Of course his solution is just increase your seeding rates... easy solution for a seed dealer.
ó-
Will start pestering my Tractor guys again to see when they have time to mess with a project...
My pull behind spreader works great. If you need to buy one, I would recommend a poly(plastic) cone on a broadcaster. Fertilizer will eat a metal cone unless washed really good. I currently have a metal cone, so.....

I pretty much do like Drycreek, other than I don't use gly. I just really don't want gly sprayed all over my property with 2 water wells. I live on the property I plant my plots. Also, I use a 3 point tiller instead of a disk, but the overall concept is the same.
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Old 04-13-2018, 09:02 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gingib View Post
Correct me if I am wrong but disking brings new weed seed. So what is the point of spraying if you are going to disk anyways?

I do either or
Yes sir you prolly right. But gly will kill off everything else to give your seed time to get big and not compete with weeds. I reckon turning the soil over with a disc flips over other seeds.

El Gato has the best method with a plot master, but like Mr.Don says that is not on the check book.
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Old 04-14-2018, 11:09 AM   #20
deerdynasty
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I have found that paying a local farmer for a week is the best way... wait until the PERFECT time right before a rain storm and then have him plant.... he can prep it for a few days so all he needs to do I drop seed an and cover. he will know how much to cover, how tilled soil needs to be, etc.... make sure u get someone who has planted what you are planting...
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Old 04-20-2018, 10:31 PM   #21
Mousehunter
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South central Texas. Been having trouble getting the Tractor guy out, but hopefully next week.

20+ Is a doable dream, but no where near the current reality. Current reality is a 3 acre plot is cleared and fenced (maybe 2 plantable) and a 4 acre plot i am just finishing clearing and hoping to fence yet this spring.

Looking down the road, there are another 2 2-3 acre plots that I might fence in the foreseeable future-but I have a ton of work I need to do first for the cattle.
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Local farmer is not that realistic. Gentmen ranchers have made waitlists way too long. I have been pestering fence builders for years. My frontage is so far down their priority list that it might never get done. Till then will keep patching and praying. Hell, was thinking of just driving a T boost in between each wood post to firm it up. A week and a a thousand or 2 in post and I might get another 20 years out of that fence. We replaced the wire only 25 years ago, but reused the old posts...

Last edited by Mousehunter; 04-20-2018 at 10:59 PM.
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Old 04-20-2018, 11:01 PM   #22
Drycreek3189
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Quote:
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Yes sir you prolly right. But gly will kill off everything else to give your seed time to get big and not compete with weeds. I reckon turning the soil over with a disc flips over other seeds.

El Gato has the best method with a plot master, but like Mr.Don says that is not on the check book.
Thanks Radar, that's pretty well my thoughts. Sometimes there's too much vegetation and it has to be disced under. Some of my plots are fall only and there is plenty of tall green vegetation to deal with. My only solution is to disc it under since throw and mow is out (pigs will eat ALL the seed) and I can't afford a $10K drill for hobby farming.
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Old 04-24-2018, 10:22 PM   #23
Mousehunter
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Well, tractor guy was a bit worried about getting to my tractor, so I spent a couple hours dragging it out. Got cocky and winched it onto my trailer and decided to take it to him. It really was not meant to be. Somehow managed to blowout a fairly new tire on the trailer. Tomorrow looking forward to mounting a new tire and continuing the 15 mile drive.

I knew I should have just paid the tractor guy to bring in his trailer. While I have used this trailer for the tractor before, apparently winching it in backwards was not a brilliant idea, really put too much weight on the tongue and front tires. I was the helper last time, without a helper today I took a shortcut or two I should not have.

Hopefully I did not damage the trailer with the excessive tongue weight. Current truck handled the extra weight fine, old truck would have never let me do this stupid mistake.
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Old 04-25-2018, 10:06 AM   #24
deerdynasty
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maybe just plant 5 of it to start? that was my problem. I had 40 plantable but really didn't need to plant but 10....
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Old 04-26-2018, 02:06 PM   #25
Big pig
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I second the rent a tractor. A neighbor might do it cheap

I would buy a gly sprayer for your utv
Hopefully with booms.
Disc and planting and covering take a long time.
And the weeds come back with a vengeance if you fertilize.
Poison eliminates a couple of those problems.
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Old 04-26-2018, 05:20 PM   #26
Mousehunter
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Itís alive!!! Sort of...

I finished fixing the blowout yesterday evening, and tractor guy towed it in this morning. After they got it off the trailer, they decided to see if the motor was froze by pulling it. Must to his surprise, after 50í or so the **** thing fired up (without a battery and with 10 year old diesel in it, and of course the muffler was long gone-😏. But then he checked the radiator and it was bubbling. Blown head gasket. Kind of explained several issues related to lack of power and oil levels rising. Running, but needing to be in ICU apparently. Have not looked into the lift issues yet.

Anyway, looks like my tractor is trying to be a boat-break out another thousand.
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Old 04-27-2018, 03:51 PM   #27
walker1983
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I would think you can hire someone to plant your 10 acres for $500-$1000, plus the cost of seed.
A neighbor might be your best bet.

If you are looking at buying a tractor, I wouldn't get anything small. It will just be frustrating trying farm w/ small equipment. We spent about $30,000, on a good used Kubota 60HP. Bought a disk, chisel, and shredder. Complete game changer for the ranch.
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Old 05-31-2018, 12:11 AM   #28
Mousehunter
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Minor update. My tractor is still sitting in the weeds at the repair shop. The two week estimate has come and gone twice. Shredded most of it with my skid loader (a job much better suited for a tractor), but need to drag it and spray it yet this week. Planting is scheduled for 5 days after spraying. So probably end of next week. Late, but hopefully not fatally so.

Other isssues at the ranch have made me rethink my tractor issues. Bids on fencing and clearing have come in at about $7.50/ft and $800/acre. Will get some of the exterior fence done for cattle, but will still have dividing fences to run myself. Meanwhile will continue my slow clearing process and fencing in manageable bits. Eventually the field renovation will require a larger tractor (to comfortably handle an offset plow and possibly grader)- which will easily do any food plot work I can ever dream about. Will make do this year, but will probably be able to plow eventually

So dreaming more of tractors than food plot equipment now. Food plot equipment will be cheep compared to the eventual tractor I fear.
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Old 05-31-2018, 06:21 PM   #29
Mousehunter
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2 passes of chain harrow and overlapping erasure. Hopefully a good kill. Seed guy is semi honest. Problem with dove is to get the seeds to break at the right time you have to plant late, but planting late is a huge gamble on rain. So figure I have a 1:3 chance.
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Old 05-31-2018, 11:06 PM   #30
Big pig
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gingib View Post
Correct me if I am wrong but disking brings new weed seed. So what is the point of spraying if you are going to disk anyways?

I do either or
Me too. My last plot was pretty awesome shredding the dead vegetation over the top of the seeds. My experience is cRitters don’t get much of the seeds on my place in Leon county

I built a drag out of chain link fence with angle iron up front to chain to and a medium fence post wired on top towards the rear.

Disking sure dries out the soil

BP
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Old 06-01-2018, 06:05 PM   #31
Drycreek3189
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mousehunter View Post
2 passes of chain harrow and overlapping erasure. Hopefully a good kill. Seed guy is semi honest. Problem with dove is to get the seeds to break at the right time you have to plant late, but planting late is a huge gamble on rain. So figure I have a 1:3 chance.
This year will be the first time I've lost a spring crop. Right after I planted, I got a pretty good rain. Nothing since. Between the lack of growth, the deer, and hogs, I'm done for this spring. I probably spent $1500 all told on seed, fertilizer, fuel, etc. I'm just glad my grocery bill doesn't depend on my farming.
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Old 07-31-2018, 11:48 AM   #32
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Default Just got tired of wanting tractor

I wanted a tractor my entire life, so even though I really did not need one, (only own 3 acres), I said screw it. I went and bough a Kubota L2501 and can I say it is AWSOME!!!! Just do it.
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Old 07-31-2018, 12:04 PM   #33
stringmusic
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Or go buy my cheap one in classifieds!
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Old 07-31-2018, 12:51 PM   #34
HDWRENCH
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Well If I where in your position I think I would get in touch with a few local farmers . They have the gear and many would do what you need for low cost.

Then you can take your time and get your gear fixed . and if its never been planted plowing will do wonders . late in the season for it but plow disc and plant and you could have some something nice by fall . Re seed in spring .

Maybe work out a deal with same farmer if he sprays as well .. Food plot or growing winter wheat all the same .

have you done any soil testing yet ?? you may find that you to make some changes there as well .. thats a very nice size for sure
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