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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Planting some fall plots yesterday in anticipation of the rain and took a few minutes to take in my property projects from over the years. The part that stuck out to me yesterday were the bounty of my fruit trees. My trees were purchased from various sources like N40apple, Morse Nursery, County sales, box store saves, maple creek, and of course Stickman. My trees are loaded all over the property and are now a destination for deer in the area. This project started a little over 10 years ago and I continue planting trees today. I still keep planting oaks and other hard mast trees that my friends just laugh at and say " you know you're probably going to be dead before those start producing acorns" to which I say, " I know, but it does my soul good!"

Anyhow, for those of you starting with a clean slate you can do wonders by creating a plan and with a little sweat equity and money, can create a deer paradise in your back yard. I only have 20 acres, but like I tell people, "It's the right 20 acres"... Look at what Bishs did with an empty 40 acre bean field. I did it with 20 acres of former sod field, so it can be done. It's not an overnight project but can be done.

This post was inspired by 2 little bucks that I watched drink from our pond and then walk over to a pear tree and pluck off some early breakfast pears.
 

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So true buckwhacker. I'll never forget the rush I got when I saw the first 2 fawns splashing around in the pond we had just excavated...or the big doe that came out of the woods early to get a drink there.

I well remember Elaine telling me...."I don't know why you are wasting your time planting oak trees - you will be dead and gone before any of them every shed an acorn". Well...I am happy to say that I proved her wrong and I've been getting acorns from trees I planted for several years now...and I have about 100 more oaks that I started from acorns ready to go into the ground as we speak. I probably will be dead and gone before any of them shed an acorn but as you say...."it does my soul good".

“A society grows great when old men plant trees in whose shade they shall never sit.” — Greek Proverb
 

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Only 20acres?
Is that like a Zen garden where you use a tiny rake with two fingers on it? L.o.l..

I've a few years into mostly 2 acres of a little more than 10.
It's like a quiet K.O.A. for deer that has food water cover and vantages to keep tabs on humans and other critters.

Odd year in that no fawn , or even a doe saying she has business there she'd prefer I stayed out of loiters about..
Deer still go to and fro though. And more will as seasons progress. Open ag fields are popular now. Till humans start looking at deer too enthused again.

Former pasture with swamp on multiple sides turned cornfield turned fallow.
I lose count of edges. Have created many.
Something like 12 going East to West. Not guessing how many North to South but less. (?)

Deer want a place to be deer they have it.
Following terrain and habitat visitors pass through. So loiter. Some set up shop during a given season.
But sightings and observation opportunities for me are a world away from what public lands around here have been over the decades.

If another hunter doesn't follow possession , deer will still benefit if less than a home and yard are added.
As do other critters. Diversity matters. But so does a place to relax a little.
 

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The majority of my fruit trees have been planted in the last 3-4 years. I'm still waiting to enjoy the fruits of my labor. Whether its late frosts or gypsy moths, the last two years have been rough on my young trees. But I know its only a matter of time before they're producing and I cant wait. My 4 year old son LOVES eating apples and I'm so excited for him to go pick his own from trees I've planted.

Just today I was reviewing my tree order for 2023. It's getting pretty large! I have a one acre food plot near the house that has been neglected the last few years. It doesnt set up super well for hunting and the soil is very heavy clay with a narrow window of time that you can safely drive the tractor on it without rutting it all to he**. I am thinking of planting rows of fruit trees east to west in it separated by strips of plots. This will reduce the amount of tractor work on the field while also remaining an attraction to the deer. I can cram a lot of pear trees into an acre!
 

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I have 16 pear trees scattered about the property that were planted over the last 2-4 years, and about half of them fruited this year with some of them having over 30 pears. Had to prune the hell out of some of them for fear of snapping limbs. Also have a handful of chestnuts bearing for the first time. Been a good year for trees...just enough moisture at the right times.
 

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So much to be thankful for...

Elaine's garden provides an abundance of fresh veggies...
Cloud Sky Plant Tree Shade


Blueberries...
Food Plant Tableware Fruit Natural foods


Shallots...
Plant Flower Grass Vegetable Agriculture


Cherry trees give us quite a few cherries for pies every year...
Food Plant Fruit Ingredient Recipe


Elaine has a raspberry patch in the orchard...
Food Ingredient Plant Natural foods Recipe


A variety of apples...
Plant Sky Natural landscape Branch Shade


And, of course, maple syrup season in the U.P.
Plant Snow Natural landscape Tree Branch


Sky Building Snow Plant Shade


Table Furniture Drinkware Drinking establishment Bottle


Sky Hand Gesture Finger Tree


All fruits of our labor...
 

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So much to be thankful for...

Elaine's garden provides an abundance of fresh veggies...
View attachment 846473

Blueberries...
View attachment 846474

Shallots...
View attachment 846475

Cherry trees give us quite a few cherries fo pies every year...
View attachment 846476

Elaine has a raspberry patch in the orchard...
View attachment 846477

A variety of apples...
View attachment 846478

And, of course, maple syrup season in the U.P.
View attachment 846479

View attachment 846480

View attachment 846481

View attachment 846482

All fruits of our labor...
That's one helluva garden...nicely done.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I enjoy the habitat work more than the hunting. After sitting a few times during deer season, I'm already missing habitat work and start planning for the next season.
Yeah Icehog, how many times do we sit in a blind or tree and start scheming for changes/plantings for the following year? I do it ALL THE TIME!
 

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Yeah Icehog, how many times do we sit in a blind or tree and start scheming for changes/plantings for the following year? I do it ALL THE TIME!
It never ends, some type of illness I guess ;)
 

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So much to be thankful for...

Elaine's garden provides an abundance of fresh veggies...
View attachment 846473

Blueberries...
View attachment 846474

Shallots...
View attachment 846475

Cherry trees give us quite a few cherries for pies every year...
View attachment 846476

Elaine has a raspberry patch in the orchard...
View attachment 846477

A variety of apples...
View attachment 846478

And, of course, maple syrup season in the U.P.
View attachment 846479

View attachment 846480

View attachment 846481

View attachment 846482

All fruits of our labor...
Heaven is your property, but with a very diligent groundskeeper 😄 .
 

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Thanks TD - I started out with pretty good dirt to begin with....but I still try to be a good steward :D
I don't show her royal indoors pics of your place to inspire her to work my hunting property with me.
(She declines claiming there's enough to do at home.)
One look at your lawn around the house and orchard and I'd get grounded at home...
 
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No worries now Waif - the lawn is toast with the drought summer we've had. We don't water it.
Neighbors water the second year new lawn.
Surprised she don't sneak over there at night to tiptoe on it.

I mow the weeds here 2-4 times a year. The hunting property areas , probably more.
 
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I am at my 3rd decade of developing and as I was walking along a two track I noticed how many American Plum I had showing the fruits. I will have to mark a few of these to prevent them from being mistaken for scrape bushes. The marking would help me identify then from RO. I would guess I put them in about 20 years ago.
 

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"I'll never forget the rush I got when I saw the first 2 fawns splashing around in the pond we had just excavated...or the big doe that came out of the woods early to get a drink there"
As long as it is a responsible 'rush'....it's good. Mine was putting a good arrow through a good doe while I was in a tree that I had planted. Always will remember that. Since then I have arrowed several deer on the path towards fruit or oak trees that I had also planted.
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."I don't know why you are wasting your time planting oak trees - you will be dead and gone before any of them every shed an acorn".
Allegedly the following is an old Greek proverb.
But it also is quoted frequently on the internet.
So you be the judge.

"A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in."

"The saying that the greatness of a society is achieved when old men plant trees whose shade they may not make use of… is indicative of the unselfish character of the society. A society becomes great when the people become responsible and unselfish.
When a man plants a tree he always expects to gain something from the tree in the form of fruits and shade. But when an old man plants a tree he knows well that he will not live see the plant grow up to bear fruits, or enjoy its shade, still he does it so that his future generation will be benefited by it. This unselfish behavior is a sign of the greatness of a society."

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

So there is that.
 
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