with Austin Delano | R&D for BioLogic
People have told me, “I hate to cut grass. So, why would mowing clover be a good idea?” If you mow the seed heads off the clover and alfalfa, you encourage new growth to appear and get a thicker, healthier plant. Don’t mow the clover like you mow your grass. Instead just knock the tops off the clover plants. By mowing, you also help control broadleaf weeds that can suck some of the nutrients out of the soils. If you cut broadleaf weeds once, they’ll often die off and not come back.
Clover, alfalfa and chicory are the perennials that you may plant in some of your green fields that will need to be mowed. If you mow chicory when it starts molting (putting out a long shoot from the middle of the plant) and cut that shoot, it’ll encourage new growth from that plant. To get the most out of your perennial green field plantings, set-up a regular mowing schedule to keep that perennial continuing to produce - especially during the spring and summer. Usually during the spring, on many hunting clubs that hunt turkeys as well as deer, mowing the green fields is not a major problem. However, either going yourself or remembering to hire someone to mow your perennials at that time of the year may be forgotten.
To have healthy deer with big racks and to know that you have trophy bucks on your property, consider putting out minerals on the edge of your green field plantings. Put a trail camera over those minerals to see the size of bucks that your plantings and minerals are producing. Also, you can begin to develop your hit list. Most hunters who really want to take the biggest bucks on their properties will check their cameras at least every 1 to 4 weeks, during the summer months. Often they start checking them in late June or early July. On one of your trips to check your trail camera, plan to mow your perennials – clover, chicory and alfalfa. You also may want to consider mowing your perennials when you go to your hunting lease to plow and plant your annuals like Mossy Oak BioLogic Maximum and Outfitter's Blends. You already will have your equipment on site for your fall plantings. So mowing shouldn’t take very long. To get the maximum utilization of your perennials, over the longest period of time, possibly 3 to 7 years, don’t forget to spray herbicides for weeds and mow.
Day 2: What to Plant When and Why