Hard Work Paid Off and What I Learned in the Process


Staff member
This food plot was many years in the making. It started off as the main logging deck when we logged about 35 acres 4 years ago. It was then expanded into a 1 acre plot with a "water" hole by the guys hired to come clean up the logging mess. Water is in quotes because they dug it in a terrible spot...pure sand and the highest point of elevation around. Needless to say, it did not hold water.

I envisioned an area surrounded by longleaf pine, bordered by chestnuts, and offering year round food. Unfortunately, I didn't envision this until the heavy equipment guys were gone. And that brings me to what I learned: if you are having logging done, make sure you have a long term plan before the work is done. I would have saved a lot of time and money if I had thought this through from the start.

Anyway, I planted the chestnuts, forrester planted 16,000 longleaf, and I cut remaining trees down with a chainsaw to open the canopy for the chestnuts. The next year I hired a guy to come in and destump the area so I could bush hog and also dig a new waterhole and fill in the old one. Somewhere along the way I planted 5 peach trees, the best of which died in the great flood of October 2015.

So here's what I'm left with today. Peaches in the near cages, chestnuts (dunstans, au buck 3 & 4, Chinese) in the tubes, waterhole in the middle, and LC mix in between. As I took this picture shortly after sunrise this morning, I could hear a gobbler in the distance. Heaven.


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Looks great. Even the best plans evolve over time. A bit because we learn and a bit because of Mother Nature.
Maybe it took a while , Cut, but you win the award for the best looking plot. What is that in the field, a deer, dog, buffalo????
So mostly pines from what i can tell around the first plot. Hardwoods in the second. Do they mix? Or do certain areas grow hardwoods and another pines?
You are exactly right. Property is pretty much divided right down the middle with pines on the eastern half and hardwoods (primarily live and water oaks) on the western side. There are millions of acorns every fall. I've been replacing water oaks with sawtooths, chestnuts, and pears. I hope to add persimmon too.