Food: Clover/chicory/corn/beans should now be planted. These plantings types provide whitetails with good summer forage. Browse in the timber is equally as important to the whitetails diet during this time of year. Throughout much of the whitetails range there has been ample rain for food plots. The only reason you may want to wait on putting bean in the ground is to have them green during the first of October, with this in mind wait to plant your beans until late June/early July. This is a tactic we’re trying.
Plot Preparation: First we did a soil test early in the year. At this point we’ve sprayed all of our plots, some multiple times. We’ve also mowed them to knock down all of the dead vegetation. Then we proceed with tilling. We’re still in the process planting right now. When we go to seeding we’re spreading the fertilizer and the seed. After that we roll (cultipaking even better) the plot to ensure for good seed to soil contact. Then it’s time to let Mother Nature do her thing.
Minerals: I’ve been refreshing mineral sites lately. My preference is to mix the minerals with dirt as best as possible. Deer like to eat minerals mixed in with dirt better then they prefer straight mineral. I have a couple of mineral sites that are getting buck and doe activity in them. Deer certainly love the minerals this time of year. I’ve made it a priority to have minerals at each of the properties I hunt.
Water: Thanks to all of the rain my water holes are now full of water and receiving good deer activity.
Trail Cameras: My trail cameras over scrapes are continuing to get some activity. I’ll be leaving a few cameras over scrapes for a long time. The cameras I have over minerals are getting lots of activity. I also have one camera over alfalfa and another over growing beans.
Mock Scrapes/Rubs: All of my mock scrapes are basically old deer scrapes that I make sure to freshen up and add scent to. Most of them are getting pretty good deer activity. This is an effective way to get deer to stop where you want them too. All of these locations are just off of or directly on deer trails.
Food Source Scouting: I’ve just recently started doing a tiny bit of food source scouting. I’ve seen a little bit of activity in doing this, but until the beans get bigger they’re not going to be offering the type of activity I prefer would scouting over food sources. Come mid to late July food source scouting should heat up.
Stand Scouting and Preparation: I have one more new stand that I really need to trim shooting lanes for and get a nice access trail too. Once that is done I’ll be somewhat happy with where I’m at getting stands ready for the season.
Shooting Practice: I’ve been slacking in this area. Pretty soon I’ll need to get the bow out and begin fine tuning my shot. A buddy of mine is in the process of getting some of my arrows refletched. Once that is done hopefully I get excited about getting myself in form for the season.
Continual Learning: It’s food plot season so I’ve been teaching myself as much as I have time to regarding food plots and how to go about planting them. I’ve recently come across to food plot seed websites that I am very impressed with: Deer Creek Seed and Hancock Seed Company. These sites offer individual seed sales as well as seed blends. My favorite aspects of these sites is the attention to detail provided regarding nutrition information, planting dates, seeding rates, ect. In addition to that I’ve been enjoying some great habitat articles from Jeff Sturgis as of late. Here are a few that I found to be very insightful: Creating Daytime Buck Travel and Attracting a Buck to your Property.