That is the only year that I planted soybeans. I planted on May 20. I really didn't hunt over them until gun season which the deer were hitting them. We kill most of our deer in early archery and they really weren't hitting the soybeans that much during that time. Might depend on the year with acorn crop, other ag fields, etc too.
Even though this plot is on top of the ridge there are areas that hold water. When we first created the plot we used the tractor bucket to dig out a low lying area. It stays full of water. It’s about 10’ x 10’ and 2’ deep. There’s another spot that holds water and doesn’t allow good growth so we dug it out too. It’s about 2 feet deep and 8’ x 8’.
Since we planted over 35 buschel of beans this year we are pretty cost conscientious. We got them from the co-op. Just put a tarp down to line my pick-up bed, pulled under the auger, and had them fill it up!! Paid the going bushel price which was just over $10. To 'clean' them we pour them out of a bucket across the front of a large shop fan and into tubs. This is an easy way to blow any remaining pods or chaff away that may choke the planter.
I still say if buck-in-a-bag beans produce more than ag beans then farmers would be planting them. They would be stupid not to.
We hunt our bean plots late muzzy (late December/Early January) and the beans are still in their pods. I'd guess they get about 4' tall as all you can see are the deer heads as they feed in the during the summer.
I don't understated the forage labeling either. I believe that is supposed to mean they are more cold weather tolerant? If so I'd like to see an experiment done where the are planted on the same day, side-by side with ag beans and see what fairs better. I know this has been done with Buck Forage Oats, and they didn't fair so well against regular seed oats.
I do agree though that if you are only doing a small plot it may be more convenient to buy buck-in-a-bag products if you don't have easy access to bulk/ag beans.
I planted less than an acre. Much more than that and I would have to be more aware of cost. I always thought forage beans meant more leaves for summer feeding. Maybe I’m mistaken. I’m not disagreeing with you at all about the farmers would use the best and most cost efficient beans out there. For what I do it’s just easier to order it online and meet ups in the driveway.
The soy beans have sprouted and seem to be coming along good. So far the deer don't seem to be hurting them but I hung a jacket up and filled the hood with smelly body lotion. I'm hoping to keep them out long enough to get the beans growing good. Anyone have any ideas? My niece-in law cuts hair, I may get some clippings from her and hang them up in bags around the plot for a week or two.
Hope the plot works out for you. Lot depends on the deer population. If you have a lot of deer I think your going to be disappointed. We planted 5 acres last year and the deer kept them ate down to much. There were very few over 6" tall after the leaves fell off. But they still provided some browse thru December. We have to many deer though.
We don't have too many deer but it doesn't take a lot to wipe out an acre. That's the one thing I've learned about food plots...if you have an acre you need 2. If you have 2 you need 4. Four you need 8. We really can't go bigger. I'm going to overseed with turnips this fall after the leaves turn yellow.