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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Didnt want to hijack the other threads on this but needed advice.

Last year I planted 2 lbs of the expensive Gander version biologic brassicas. I seeded them correctly, and the growth was amazing. Brassicas were huge, 20+ inches tall with some turnips nearly the size of bowling balls. I didnt realize at the time how amazing the plot was, but late season the deer LOVED it.
This year, since folks on here convinced me I overpayed I made 3 strips of brassicas. One of the same biologic, $10 per pound, one of PPT from seed store $5 per pound, and one of dwarf essex rape for $2 per pound since I was told its the same minus the turnip.
I planted 3 weeks ago due to my schedule.
All looking good, but the PPT are WAAAAY too thick. Already 4-5 inches tall and cannot see the ground anywhere. Not sure why since the rate was all the same, maybe I bumped the setting.
Should I replant it, and seed it much thinner? I still have the experiment going with the 3 strips, maybe can learn something?

PS each strip is about 20ft by 220ft.
 

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Did you plant 2lbs for all 3 strips? Or 2lbs per strip for a total of 6lbs?

Each strip you described is about 4400 sq feet or 1/10th of an acre.

PTT seed rate is 3-6lbs per acre as stand alone. Where Rape is 5-10lbs per acre. Overseeding will cause you to have more smaller bulps on the turnips, seeding less results in softball size turnips in my findings.
 

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Did you seed 1lb in each strip? If you look at turnip seeds in comparison to rape seeds, they are a bit smaller, therefore more seeds/lb.

Seeding rates for turnips alone are usually in the 2-5lb/acre range, while rape is typically 6-8lb/acre.

Each stip is about 1/10acre, so turnips at the proper rate should have been just under 1/2lb and rape a bit over 1/2lb.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The size of the strips is approximate, I have the actual dimensions at home, I think the strip about 20 by 200 I used 1lb. I set the rate on my hand spreader based on that, so should be similar.
I would have guessed the PPT went thick due to bumping the seed rate, but I planted the DER just fine afterwards and it looks ok, other than all the weeds coming in. I based my seed rates on about 8lbs per acre, maybe that also too thick.
 

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Did you seed 1lb in each strip? If you look at turnip seeds in comparison to rape seeds, they are a bit smaller, therefore more seeds/lb.

Seeding rates for turnips alone are usually in the 2-5lb/acre range, while rape is typically 6-8lb/acre.

Each stip is about 1/10acre, so turnips at the proper rate should have been just under 1/2lb and rape a bit over 1/2lb.

We think alike!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The brassicas were all seeded too heavy, but...the expensive seeds look HUGE, green and perfect.
The $5 per pound PPT are starting to turn yellow/red/purple in certain patches. Why? Im assuming due to overseeding and lack of fertilizer? If so, why do other spots look ok?
The cheap stuff $2 per pound of brassica (no bulbs) is looking lush and green also.
Maybe a picture would help.
Based on this experiemnt, I will be buying the expensive seed next year, and will be careful not to overseed.
 

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In my experience food plotting is all about trial and error. Use what you learn on sites like these as guidelines and tinker with it from there.

Dbltree has been a huge help to me and many others on this site. For his brassicas, I believe he uses around 10 lbs per acre. That is WAY too much for me...over double the amount I use. I tried going around 6 lbs per acre and still had nothing but golf ball size turnips. Dropped it down to 4-4.5 lbs and get a nice stand of baseball to softball sized bulbs.

You just have to mess around with it until you finds what works best for you. You said you had 3 strips? Try planting one at 6 lb/acre. one at 5 and one at 4 and see how they turn out.
 

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one thing you often find on the BOB types of seed is that they will have some fertilizer mixed in with the seed mix too to account for most people that use them want a one pass solution, that also helps them seem 'greener' than the plot next to it if it didn't get any fertilizer when planted or after. If you're only doing 1/3 acre per year, the "expensive" seed is a minimal difference to mill pricing and not always a bad way to go. But if you're planting 8-10 acres like some of us, that price difference becomes very noticeable.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I only plant around 1 acre total right now, so the cost wouldnt be too bad. The trial and error is true too. Next year may try corn again (this year sucked), with soys mixed in, and over seed with brassica late July/early Aug. I dont know of anything that would beat that.
 

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Dbltree has been a huge help to me and many others on this site. For his brassicas, I believe he uses around 10 lbs per acre. That is WAY too much for me...over double the amount I use.
keep in mind he also suggests "200#'s of 46-0-0 urea and 400#'s of 6-28-28 per acre" so that might explain why he is able to plant so much and still get good growth
 

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I only plant around 1 acre total right now, so the cost wouldnt be too bad. The trial and error is true too. Next year may try corn again (this year sucked), with soys mixed in, and over seed with brassica late July/early Aug. I dont know of anything that would beat that.
Well, I guess that depends on what you mean by "beat that".

Corn and soybeans tend to get wiped out by coons and/or deer before hunting seasons roll around, particularly if you're planting as little as 1 acre. I would never count on either of those on less than 3-5 acres, and even then, the deer numbers would have to be well-controlled.

You are experimenting with different brassicas and discovering that they're not always the easiest plants to get the seeding rate right on. However, you are learning something very important: Know the characteristics of each thing you plant so you can get the most return for your time and money.

I greatly prefer to have at least half of my plots in a cereal mix, so that if/when a brassica mix fails in some way, I've still got the old reliable rye mix to keep deer in the area.

Remember that the design and layout of your plots, and how they relate to high-quality cover, is way more important than what you plant. If you want something you can't beat, give deer the best bedding areas around and then plant something that will stand up to the intense grazing pressure you're likely to see. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I mean better in terms of actually attracting deer. I dont have many option for increasing bedding area on my land, but my non hunting neighbors with 190 acres seem to help me quite a bit. My best strategy is to have the best groceries around to get them to stay near my land and plots when late season arrives. Which means just do better than a cut corn/bean field, and lots of it.
 

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keep in mind he also suggests "200#'s of 46-0-0 urea and 400#'s of 6-28-28 per acre" so that might explain why he is able to plant so much and still get good growth
Valid point. But how many of the average food plotter like myself can afford to put down 600 lbs of fertilizer per acre? Not many, which makes it all the more important that guys cater their planting and fertilizer rates to not only their land capabilities but also their wallet.
 

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Valid point. But how many of the average food plotter like myself can afford to put down 600 lbs of fertilizer per acre? Not many, which makes it all the more important that guys cater their planting and fertilizer rates to not only their land capabilities but also their wallet.

I agree. I've been going light on the fert this year to save money. Yields may be lighter but overall still effective.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Totally agree on the cost. I put down what makes sense to my budget. Some of my plots, brassicas especially look amazing, 2 feet tall, lush, green, leaves the size of a notebook with almost bowling ball sized turnips, for the second year in a row, all with about 1/6 the recommended rate of fert.
 
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