to much to ask for?

treenutt(8)December 30, 2013

What tree or trees would yall recommend to plant in the wild, with the occasional watering (once or twice a month), weed control, that could survive moderate droughts, 100+ degrees in summer, 20 degree winter (once a blue moon) in sandy clay loam and it would have to produce some kind of acorn, nut (heavy mast) or fruit to benefit the whitetail deer population in no more than 5 years of it being planted? That would be my dream tree and would buy quite a few of them. If I get an answer I will plant them all over my farm. Ive tried year after year, but no luck. That's why I've been posting on here quite a bit lately. I have great success with pine trees, but anything else I've planted out in the wild does not survive.
thanks treenutt..

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gardener365(5b Illinois USA)

Have you considered dwarf chinkapin oak?


    Bookmark   December 30, 2013 at 1:36PM
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no but im looking it up right now. thanks

    Bookmark   December 30, 2013 at 2:27PM
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How about chinkapin chestnuts?

    Bookmark   December 30, 2013 at 2:56PM
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I've been collecting and planting seedling bur oaks from around their native range - most seedlings have begun producing decent acorn crops by 8 years - and they've not received any care, to speak of, other than mowing around them.
I initially started with the bur oaks for the very reason you brought up - as a mast crop for deer - they LOVE those big bur oak acorns, and they crop reliably, almost every year.

I'm not a huge fan of sawtooth oaks (but do have a couple) - they're reputed to be early and heavy producers of acorns relished by deer & turkeys. Have seen some reports suggesting they may have invasive tendencies.

email me off list - I've got some other stuff you may be interested in...

    Bookmark   December 30, 2013 at 7:27PM
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If you want a "plant it and forget it" tree, look at what grows wild in highway median strips in your area.

Crabapple? (I've seen it growing wild on beaches in cold climates) Eastern Red Cedar? (if small berries are good enough...the cold wouldn't bother it and I've heard it is reasonably drought tolerant). American Holly? Beach Plum? (Although that is more of a shrub). Honeylocust? Horse chestnut? (both listed as drought tolerant and produce nuts) American Plum?

I recommend you NOT plant all one kind of tree. If a blight comes along that kills that kind of tree, you lose ALL your trees. (What happened to my parents). Also, having trees that produce their nuts at different times of year will keep the deer fed for more of the year.

Here is a link that might be useful: Draught Tolerant Trees

    Bookmark   December 30, 2013 at 7:27PM
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I've been doing something similar, but not planting. Before we mow or burn the first time of the year, we walk around the property to look for seedlings that have popped up during the previous year and mark them. This will be the third year that we will do that. It seems to be working. The most abundant oak trees we have on our property are post, water, and black jack oaks. They are all mature, well over 40+ years. The previous owner wanted a park like atmosphere and well, they got it and that's one reason why we bought the place, but since then we've encountered a severe drought (2011) which I had to cut down a lot of dead mature hardwoods. Good for firewood but they left huge gaps in the canopy. I want to fill in those gaps and other gaps where no trees exist . I want more woods. No more park like looks. I want cover for deer and hard, soft mast and browse.

    Bookmark   December 31, 2013 at 9:39AM
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I would very much like to see your selection of trees.
thanks treenutt

    Bookmark   December 31, 2013 at 9:40AM
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the folks at this nursery in tuskegee, al recommend adding pears to your food plots, saying they are the easiest fruit tree to grow. they offer several apples and crabapples that are supposed to do well in the hot and humid southeast. they also recommend the bur oak that lucky mentioned, as well as some other oaks.

Here is a link that might be useful: the wildlife group

    Bookmark   December 31, 2013 at 10:37AM
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Hey, Jeff.
Certainly, if one is planting stuff for wildife mast production, hard & soft mast sources ought to be in the mix.
While I'm primarily a pecan/hickory nut, in addition to the oaks, I've planted persimmons, apples/crabs, and pears - as well as some different stuff like Chinese Che.
I've got most of the apples & pears that the guys at TWG offer, as well as one VERY late pear that i ran across in Tallapoosa Co. several years back - was still LOADED with fruits & ground underneath it covered with drops on New Year's Day. I'm using some of the myriad 'volunteer' callery seedlings around here to graft it and other late-season pears, like Galloway, onto as a no-spray soft-mast crop for deer.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2014 at 10:13PM
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jcalhoun(8b Mobile County AL)

Crabapples, Chickasaw plums, persimmons, black cherries, blueberries, huckleberries, service berry, are natives.

Please be careful when using pears. Some are very invasive.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2014 at 5:13AM
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jcalhoun(8b Mobile County AL)

Deer love clover mixes so planting some of that around the trees will give them something else to eat and be good for the soil too.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2014 at 5:15AM
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Native persimmons are slow to reach significant production, but you might want to think about persimmons anyways. Do persimmons grow wild in your area?

Chinese chestnuts are an easy tree to grow that grows quickly and comes into bearing early. The deer love them, but so do the weevils. So long as you're not wanting to eat them yourself, in which case you'd about have to fence the deer out, the weevils shouldn't be anything to worry about.

What about mulberries? I don't know, but I bet deer eat mulberries. They'd probably really like the leaves, too. Mulberries can grow pretty fast and fruit early.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2014 at 7:14AM
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chestnut. aka 'forest rodent crack'

acid soil helps, and 5 years might be a bit optimistic, but 8-10 years should be no problem.

    Bookmark   January 3, 2014 at 8:09PM
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If you extend your time requirement a bit, the Bur Oaks would be an excellent choice. Very deep tap roots and very large acorns. I would suggest you plant a mix of species.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2014 at 4:22PM
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