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Frost Seeding


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I'm not sure if this belongs here, I looked for a food plot section and couldn't find one.

 

Anyhow... I've never frost seeded before. I believe it's about that time, but are there any do's or don'ts I should be looking for with the weather? I have an acre clover and chicory field that I started last year that did well, but I've read frost seeding is a great way to fill in bare spots and over browsed areas while also extending the life of the plot. I already have my seed bag I bought on a black Friday sale.

thanks!

"Do unto others as you would have them do unto you"

Luke 6:31 and Matthew 7:12

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Frost seeding works great.  I have been amazed by our results from it.  Last two years we wait til the snow is gone and long range forecast looks like no crazy storms or extreme cold.  Last year we frost seeded March 17.  But I'm guessing a little later this year due to having snow pack here. 

We over seed our trails in areas and just broadcast it fairly heavy and wait for rains to pound the seed to and into the soil.  We just used clover seed.  It's really small and gets into the ground easily and seems to take off.  If too much thatch there I will take a bit to be sure we get ground contact.  But it's mostly just a throw it out there and let the seed take.  Hopefully it rains and gets into the ground and the frost heaving helps that as well.  

We had a clover wall in some of our trails last year where we started frost seeding it was just all clover and about 4" higher than the regular trails.   

It's just getting that early seed out there to grow as soon as possible but not so early it faces extreme cold that can kill it.  I've heard you can frost seed right on snow but I like to be able to see the ground before I send it . 

"it's pointless for humans to paint scenes of nature when they can go outside and stand in it"- Ron Swanson

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25 minutes ago, mowin said:

Moved to wildlife and habitat management. 

just a general note, take it or leave it. But when searching the forum front page section, that doesn't show up. Given that many of us food plot I'd recommend making it more prominent. Maybe a conservation/food plot/qdm or something. We don't have that many posts or users to necessarily warrant so many subs. But anyhow not important, just throwing it out there. 

"Do unto others as you would have them do unto you"

Luke 6:31 and Matthew 7:12

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4 minutes ago, Robhuntandfish said:

Frost seeding works great.  I have been amazed by our results from it.  Last two years we wait til the snow is gone and long range forecast looks like no crazy storms or extreme cold.  Last year we frost seeded March 17.  But I'm guessing a little later this year due to having snow pack here. 

We over seed our trails in areas and just broadcast it fairly heavy and wait for rains to pound the seed to and into the soil.  We just used clover seed.  It's really small and gets into the ground easily and seems to take off.  If too much thatch there I will take a bit to be sure we get ground contact.  But it's mostly just a throw it out there and let the seed take.  Hopefully it rains and gets into the ground and the frost heaving helps that as well.  

We had a clover wall in some of our trails last year where we started frost seeding it was just all clover and about 4" higher than the regular trails.   

It's just getting that early seed out there to grow as soon as possible but not so early it faces extreme cold that can kill it.  I've heard you can frost seed right on snow but I like to be able to see the ground before I send it . 

thanks i've also read about it getting washed out with rain and melt and I have some sections that are a little sloped so I'd hate to see $80 just thrown out the window.

"Do unto others as you would have them do unto you"

Luke 6:31 and Matthew 7:12

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6 minutes ago, Belo said:

just a general note, take it or leave it. But when searching the forum front page section, that doesn't show up. Given that many of us food plot I'd recommend making it more prominent. Maybe a conservation/food plot/qdm or something. We don't have that many posts or users to necessarily warrant so many subs. But anyhow not important, just throwing it out there. 

It's down further on the forums page.  Not in the hunting section.  I'll talk to Matt and see if splitting the food plots off of wildlife management and putting it up in the hunting section is a option. 

Screenshot_20230310-104240.png

Edited by mowin
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4 minutes ago, Belo said:

thanks i've also read about it getting washed out with rain and melt and I have some sections that are a little sloped so I'd hate to see $80 just thrown out the window.

Melt shouldn't be an issue this year.  And unless we get a gully washer right after planting it should stay.  Although it's the same as planting any seed, all pending mother nature.  I would just check the long range 15 day forecast and then plan on it pending then.  I see March is expected to be slightly lower in temps than normal so I am gonna wait a little longer than last year. 

"it's pointless for humans to paint scenes of nature when they can go outside and stand in it"- Ron Swanson

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27 minutes ago, mowin said:

It's down further on the forums page.  Not in the hunting section.  I'll talk to Matt and see if splitting the food plots off of wildlife management and putting it up in the hunting section is a option. 

Screenshot_20230310-104240.png

ah i see it now under habitat management. That's on me then, i swear i tried haha.

"Do unto others as you would have them do unto you"

Luke 6:31 and Matthew 7:12

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21 minutes ago, mowin said:

What type of clover? Just anything off the shelf? 

This is my lineup for this spring. We've had good luck with the outside pride white clover and esp the Whitetail institute clover.  Adding the Domain Comeback kid and Hot Chic this year.  Going to put the Domain products in areas we've newly cut. Hot Chic has 2 clovers and chickory and Comeback kid has a bunch of clovers and some grasses.  I'm excited to try them.  

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Edited by Robhuntandfish

"it's pointless for humans to paint scenes of nature when they can go outside and stand in it"- Ron Swanson

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I've got a couple areas that I plotted last year that I am going to frost seed and if it takes like other spots have I probably won't put food plots there in the summer/fall this year.  

"it's pointless for humans to paint scenes of nature when they can go outside and stand in it"- Ron Swanson

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Medium red clover is generally considered the best frost seeding clover but truth be told we exclusively frost seed our clover plots using red and white clover. I can’t recall the last time we actually prepped a plot for clover.

Frost seed at 120% the normal seeding rate for a new plot. For overseeding we go much less and take a long-term view. It’ll work into the soil. Once time is right we will go in and spray cleth to kill off grasses trying to compete and then 24db. Once it’s established it works really well. We sometimes will seed a brassica plot with clover in the fall but that’s on a rotation basis.

Hancock seed has ladino white clover for $33 shipped at 5 lbs. that’s probably plenty to overseed your bare spots and what not. Cheaper too than buck on a bag. My experience has also taught me that overseeding  rate isn’t a big deal. Not like brassica IMO. If you go over it’ll sort itself out in a perennial.

We have a super small clover plot at 1/8 acre and that is going on like year 8 and all we do is frost seed it and then mow in summer and a splash or triple 10. It looks like a carpet of clover.

Edited by phade
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1 hour ago, Robhuntandfish said:

I've got a couple areas that I plotted last year that I am going to frost seed and if it takes like other spots have I probably won't put food plots there in the summer/fall this year.  

That's kinda what I want to get away from is doing food plots in the summer/fall.

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Frost seeding is they way to thicken your plot back up are recreate your fall planted annuals. Now is the time. February into March while there is still Freeze then thaw on a daily basis. when it comes to Frost seeding, the best seeds to utilize are typically Most perennial White clovers, Certainly Medium Red clover, Chicory can easily be frost seeded as well, but avoid Alfalfa. Even annual Clover like Balansa is a GREAT seed to use for frost seeding, its great as a cover crop and produces a lot of good things for the soil. Including Organic matter when it dies off. The der and Turkey love this stuff.. The clover leaves will be the biggest you've ever seen. Best Nitrogen producer. 

I had plans to do the last of my plots this weekend with some new seeds, on Organic grounds.. looking forward to this experiment this season!  No Till. But the snow is going to keep me from it.. 

Wait till the snow melts, or begins melting if you only have a couple inches at most. 

There are Perennial blends out there of clovers and such that will draw better in the fall, than brassicas and bulbs do.. And more nutrition and they can be frost seeded this time of year..  

As I always recommend, AVOID planting monocultures.. utilize seed blends.. 

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