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Living in an Ag area, I'd say that food plots are only 10%-15% of my concern. Meanwhile I started planting trees and NWSG this year, and will continue with more next year as well.
 

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Has anyone ever hinged trees along some of their switch or grass stands (if anyone has any against a woodline) or even just dumped some large tree tops into it to help with some of the lacking overhead cover?
I dumped some trees in an area with tall CSGs last year. Looking at it this year, it worked pretty well to help keep the visual screen into winter by keeping the grass upright. instead of flattening grasses I still have 4'+ screens at the moment and anticipate it will remain until I start trying to kick up rabbits after the endless deer seasons are over.
 

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Good to see you're back Paul!

So deer don't eat pigweed down near your place? While I've read that deer will browse them, they don't seem to eat mine either. I let some go last year and there are more this year. I don't have any really thick patches though - are they really something to be concerned about?

Oh, and with regards to the cedar you've planted, I must ask, do you have any apple trees? I've planted ~125 crabapples in the last 2 years, have 3 wild apple trees growing, and have a few that are suspected wild apples though they are still 3'-4' tall. I'm hesitant to plant cedar due to apple cedar rust (though I have 4-5 growing wild already) and am curious if you've faced this concern at all?
 

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Yes they do grub my pigweeds pretty good but when they get too tall they stop feeding on them. I guess my pigweed crop is too "robust" for my deer herd to keep them under control...:D
Ah hah - I was under the impression that they ate them one cold weather hit and they turned mushy. If they only eat them young, no wonder I've never noticed.
Norway and white spruce will do the trick if you don't want red cedars to contend with...;)
I've already put in 225 norways and 100 whites. :D Not sure I'll put more though because I just don't have room.
 

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How effective is edge feathering in its first year?
Echoing Paul, it's very effective. I've had white ash put up 1/2-1 dozen 4'-5' shoots and chest/shoulder high black raspberries and black elderberry. Don't forget about the hinged trees that stay alive as well. Without a doubt the quickest way to have an impact on habitat is with a good chainsaw in late winter/early spring.
 

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I cut on an angle and perhaps 60-85% of the way through the tree.
IMO, it's best to cut as little as possible while still being able to pull the tree over. This retains as much of the living wood connecting the top half of the tree so it can continue growing with as much success as possible. 70%-85% just sounds like way too much. Granted, I often have to cut each tree a few times until I cut enough that I can tip it over (usually using a pole or rope to get leverage on the tree by pulling from higher up). It's better to cut "almost enough" a few times than to cut too much the first time.

 

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Disagree, A tree lives by its bark. As long as the bark don't get pinched the tree will heal itself, Want me to post an example tree?
I don't think I worded my post well enough. I was suggesting to keep as much of the tree attached as possible so that it will continue to live as long as possible. IME the chances and duration that a tree will live are proportional to the size of the hinge. The hinge that remains needs to be large enough to supply nutrients to the top half.

I didn't mean to imply that the upper part of the tree wouldn't live if only a small strip keeps it attached, but chances are reduced (not to mention I've had the wind "roll" a few poorly hinged trees and break the hinge).
 

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As far as his techniques for bedding...don't do it that way. You can't uncut a tree.
The forum is about sharing ideas and what someone thinks might work or works for them in their particular situation. I wouldn't do it that way either, but it might benefit someone else. I'd ask you how you do it, but there have been more than enough posts about who you believe everyone should pay to find out that answer and it's become a broken record that many are tired of.
I have looked at his hinge cutting pictures for quite a while and grimaced but kept quiet. Now he is talking along "how-to" lines and making "how-to" videos and it scares me. Sorry. I think when it comes to the potential death of our members through improper cutting techniques tact is not something I will opt for.
FWIW, some of your window makers and head-high cuts scare me. Neither myself nor anyone else is running all over your threads every time you post a really high hinge cut. Cutting trees is dangerous work. It is the responsibility of the operator to determine what is safe or not.

Everyone has and is entitled to their opinion. I think you'll find greater success leading through example than shunning the work of others. In the mean time I hope that your animosity towards Paul subsides. You're both valued posters and I'd be disappointed to see either of you leave as a result of recent events.
 

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Sometimes there is a tremendous amount of "hoopla" over the bedding issue, for most of us it's just common sense but some put way to much emphasis on creating a "bed" versus a thick safe sanctuary.

....

Don't fret the small stuff! Life is complicated enough with out adding dribble about making "beds"...make a mess! Log, or hinge a percentage of your timber every year and maintain funnels between them and keep deer adapted to traveling only to your food sources by not forcing them to look elsewhere! The right food source combination's that will feed them year around will in turn give them no reason to leave.
I think that it's really just different strokes for different folks. ;)

Paul, you've mentioned before that properties in the vicinity of yours hold mature deer in park-like woods while the owners do no improvements. They are able to do this because they have hundreds of acres of woods.

You have less, so you feel the need to do improvements that will encourage deer to use your property such as you've suggested in this thread and many others. You do not have time to rake beds, ect, so you set aside larger areas you've cut and let the deer sort it out for themselves.

... I, for example, have far, far less. If I wanted I could fell every tree on my property within a weekend by myself. This is where people's interest in building "beds", AKA specific locations comes to greater interest. I have limited acreage I can do changes to, so I prefer to focus on the finer details because I don't have space to waste or let the deer figure it out for themselves. I also live on location, so it's perhaps easier for me to get to take care of finer details than you are able to, raking for example.

Now, if I had an 80 or a 160 acre parcel, I'd probably not focus on the details as much because I wouldn't have the time! But on a broader landscape you can get away with more, such as your neighbors with hundreds of acres of mature forest with mature bucks. Does focusing on the finer details guarantee success - heck no! I do however feel that it increases the odds!

Now I'm not in the TL fan club, but thought I should point out why some people have such interest in executing down to specific details to increase their odds verses those who have a much larger canvas to work with. ;) :)
 

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My pocket camera isn't the greatest ...
The pictures look good enough to me! Thanks for sharing.

I must say that I envy those large trees you show cut that have large tops still offering structure. My woods is ~80%+ Ash and due to EAB, all of the bigger ones are 100% dead and have been for a few years now so they are well dried out. When I cut them, the tops simply shatter and there's nothing but a large trunk and some bigger branches for structure. :(

The next few years will be tough, but I'd rather get them down so they stop randomly falling on non-ash species regrowing from the forest floor or falling across trails during the corse of the fall (there's nothing like sitting in a stand for the first time, watching the deer coming down the planned path, only to see them turn back because of trees fallen across the trail blocking them.
 

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OSXer, What about new ash trees sprouting up on the floor? These out to be good for a while. I don't know if the ashes that were stressed out or dying sent out a lot more seeds, but I'm getting tons of shoots and these will probably give some viable saplings in the next ten years. By then the EAB might have passed through.
I've seen people say that EAB will move on, but I think it's here to stay. I have a number of trees that aren't dead yet, but in the few year it will take them to die, the younger trees will have thick enough bark that EAB will move to them, so on and so forth.

Here is an example of my woods, though this was taken during the spring and by the end of summer it looked even worse:


While it does allow for a lot of regrowth at the forest floor as you can kind of see above, why have I changed my stance on whether to cut these down?



I had a ladder stand on the big tree to the right ... obviously I had to move it.



While I have new ash sprouting similar to Steven's photos above, my new goal is variety. There is no reason to put all my eggs in one basket, so I've been planting a variety of wildlife friendly shrubs and trees, and fencing them until they get established. It's another reason the ash need to go though. I'm tired of them randomly falling on the things I'm planting to replace them.



Luckily I could bend that cage back and the shrub was ok after it was crushed by part of the tree on the ground behind it.

And here's a good shot of what started me saying that I envy the structure resulting from the large trees that DblTree has dropped. His trees create structure, where as mine are dead, dried, and brittle, so they don't create structure on their own. Instead they hit the ground, shatter, and the "structure" created is relatively flat.



There are some small ash trees that are still alive that I can hinge once the larger ones are down (no sense in doing them first because it'll only increase the chances that they will be crushed flat by a larger tree). The ground is also really good, so there should be vigorous regrowth, but it will take 3-5 years and in the mean time the structure will be limited.
 

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Cut and use for firewood. Sooner rather than later.
Yep, I'm looking into a wood furnace/stove to make use of them. :)
At the stump many new shoots were growing up at least 6 feet of fresh new growth, this was the first time I have noticed what looked like dead ash sprouting. Gives a little hope.
I've got a variety of trees resprouting. The deer like the browse and the stem density is nice. However, eventually the bark will be thick enough that EAB will lay eggs in it and the larva will kill the trees. My thought is to keep cutting it back before it gets to this point to keep the EAB from killing them. Hopefully someday there will be an EAB solution. Until then, I'll also keep planting a wide variety of other species too!
 

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...but the young trees are still not infected.
Won't those trees grow large enough in the next 5-10 years though that the bark will become attractive? In that time there will still be beetles around. Yes, perhaps the "wave of suddenly dying trees" will end, but EAB killing ash will keep occurring until something makes an honest attempt to target and prey on EABs.
 

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I have seen literally hundreds of deer beds under overhanging trunks of hinged trees.
Those beds are also relatively close to the trunks of the hinged trees. ;)

You are absolutely right about this. A human would not feel very comfortable under a kitchen table, neither would a deer. Why would you ever try to create bedding cover that would make a deer fell like he was under a kitchen table?
 

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I think you are incorrect. Dbltree posts info and Bio points out why it is wrong. However he does not give specifics on the subject because it was learned at the TL compund so his "secrets" can not be told.
:yeahthat: ... most of the time. Jim did take the time to post some good information on the dynamics of cutting larger trees at one point. This broken record of "you're doing it wrong" in regards to beds, but never offering any value aside from urging people to set a goal of saving $800 to be told, is annoying as hell.

DblTree has posted some decent information on beds.

Bishs has posted some thoughts with regards to beds.

NorthJeff has posted some good information and pictures about beds.

Bioactive just tells every to spend $800 like he did. :rolleyes:
 
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