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Food Plot School 2011 - Part 1, Tools of the Trade

Farming food plots is addicting. The more you farm food plots (aka green fields), the more you will love it and want to take it to the next level. Plus, food plots draw wildlife. You will have more success and fun hunting if you have food plots. This five-part series will cover--
  • Tools of the Trade
  • Sites - Picking and Prepping
  • What, When, How
  • Care and Maintenance
  • The Big Picture

As you start out, keep in mind that this is a slow process. Enjoy each aspect of it. The tools of the trade can be simple or over the top. Presently, I am somewhere in between. My grandpa was a farmer and had all the “stuff”. But I am not farming hundreds of acres. I am farming a total of 6 acres in five locations in the woods for 10 years. In the photo at right, left to right, you can see--

  • A flip-over disk
  • ATV with drag harrow
  • 1,000-lb capacity ATV cart
  • Spreader
  • Chain saws, tools, and seeds to plant.

I started with a hand-held spreader for fertilizer and seed, and a reversible drag for harrowing - to deep harrow before planting, and then shallow harrow to get seeds into the soil.

This year I may be buying a girl-sized tractor, and it’s nearly for sure I will buy a one-row planter for corn and beans. I have been doing my own food plots alone and if I can do it, any of you ladies can do it. The three basics you really need most to do a food plot effectively are--

  1. ATV
  2. drag harrow
  3. hand spreader.

You can effectively plant a small plot with just these basic tools. A reversible drag harrow costs $150 or less at an implement dealer.

The fourth thing on your “must-have” list is a flip-over disk for the ATV. These range from $500 to $800. Just Google “flip-over disk” to find them.

An ATV cart/trailer is helpful to lug chain saws, seed, tools, spreader, supplies, etc. to and from your plots.

The seed spread runs less than $100 at farm stores. Right now I have all the things in the photo, plus I bought a 16 gallon ATV mounted sprayer ($135) this year and have that tractor and one-row planter on my wish list. Farming food plots a great for fitness too! Next column will be “picking sites to plant and preparing them”.


  • Buy Ag equipment in winter or off season to get better deals

  • Shop Craig’s List and ebay for good deals on farm equipment

  • ALWAYS wear work gloves, ball cap, long sleeve shirt, heavy pants and rubber or work boots when farming to protect yourself from injury.

  • STAY fit. Having good fitness will make farming SO much easier.

Next: Sites—Selecting and Prepping

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By Kathleen Kalina
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By Kathleen Kalina
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Regional Directors

Regional Directors organize
and participate in
shoots and shows

Julia Heinz
Alaska and the Yukon

Kathy Russell

Tammy Hartline
North Alabama, Mississippi p
and North Georgia

Synthia Wilson

Kim Hose
Rachel Baker
Beth Milligan
Jo Rice
Angelina Coopersmith
Jenny Paul
 Mara Osborne
North Carolina


Tracy Rowe




 To become a regional director
for your area, contact: