adkhunter71

Goldenrod- leave it or mow it?

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I have until the last year only hunted bigwoods areas in the Adirodacks and am pretty inexperienced when hunting areas that are a mix of woods and agriculture.  

The area that I now have access to hunt is a mix of woods with fields.  A couple of the fields are filled with goldenrod.  They are around 10 acres each with hedgerows running through them. The neighbor to the south has a large soybean field that buts up against our property (not sure if that is relevant, but figured I would include it).  Tthere are about 30 acres or so of woods to the northwest.  My natural instinct is to hunt the woods, but I am quickly learning that deer in agriculture areas are a different breed in that they don't avoid fields and open areas as much as the northwoods deer that I am used to hunting.

A buddy wants to have the goldenrod mowed down, but I feel that it might be better left as is.  What is everyone's experience with hunting areas with goldenrod? 

Leave it or mow it?

Thanks for your input.

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Keep the golden rod...maybe mow a few paths through it to walk and connect them to one where you would hang a stand. Deer will use it to bed and feel more comfortable moving in that than in an open field. These deer are creatures of edge habitat so the edge between the golden rod and woods should be a very good place to hunt. 

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A 10 acres of golden rod field  can provide cover, travel corridors and some food sources. they can also be some of the most frustrating areas to hunt...lol. Typically a mower or brush hog is habitats worst enemy but I have seen it work well to modify the travel patterns to the hunters advantage. You said there were hedgerows in these fields. Nothing more frustrating than seeing that big rack about 50 yards out in the golden rod walking parallel to you and only seeing the rack. The one place we used to hunt we brushhogged center sections to force the travel closer to the hedgerows (where our stands were) 

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Huge fan of the standing goldenrod here!

Even when I don't see deer in it, I know they're in there!

Later in the season when the leaves come down and all the corn gets chopped I know where they'll be able to hide until the snow knocks it down.

One of my favorite early season ag fields to hunt butts up to this 22 acre goldenrod field. The deer just pour out of there like cockroaches as the sun starts to go down from September right on into the late winter.

 

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You may have read a post I did on the neighbors Golden rod...I told them to mow trails and clover would grow...so they did...now they have winding trails mowed through all their golden rod with lush clover on the trails...It is basically a huge sanctuary for they hunt very little and I watch the deer moving in and out  crossing those trails,doe walk them eating, from my stands...I can't hunt them...well could but won't....but they bed there and feed here.

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11 minutes ago, wooly said:

Huge fan of the standing goldenrod here!

Even when I don't see deer in it, I know they're in there!

Later in the season when the leaves come down and all the corn gets chopped I know where they'll be able to hide until the snow knocks it down.

One of my favorite early season ag fields to hunt butts up to this 22 acre goldenrod field. The deer just pour out of there like cockroaches as the sun starts to go down from September right on into the late winter.

 

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Thanks Wooly...as always, love your pics....and your advice...and your comedic flair, lol.

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for gods sake leave it!!!!!

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Thanks Wooly...as always, love your pics....and your advice...and your comedic flair, lol.



As most here have said leave it...I killed the only deer I got last year after I jumped it outta the goldenrod by my truck every time I got there....finally on time it must have decided it didn't want to move so I took 2 steps into golden rod it jumped ran stopped at 180 yards is and I put a 50 cal Thru the sweet spot....I'll never mow it if and when I buy land

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Mow paths that allow you shoot deer as they pass through  them . Set up a couple stands for different winds, leave the majority and all of the outside , you want them to feel secure in there still . 

One friend has a large golden rod field and this works great, also he has to cross it and the mowed path lets him approach the stands with as little noise as possible .

He's watched the sun come up only to see bedded bucks not far off from the path he took, if it wasnt mowed he'd have busted them for sure .

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what is goldenrod? a flower? 10 acres of flowers?

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"The sportsman lives his life vicariously. For he secretly yearns to have lived before, in a simpler time. A time when his love for the land, water, fish and wildlife would be more than just part of his life. It would be his state of mind."

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It will only get better with time. Leave it several years and you will have great deer cover w food in soft willow and other bush species deer love to eat. Sure it can be hard to spot them in there, but your property will hold deer. Some of the best deer stands I had overlooked a grown up field that had goldenrod and brush. The deer like to bed there, and will mill around during the day feeling secure.

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31 minutes ago, genesee_mohican said:

It will only get better with time. Leave it several years and you will have great deer cover w food in soft willow and other bush species deer love to eat. Sure it can be hard to spot them in there, but your property will hold deer. Some of the best deer stands I had overlooked a grown up field that had goldenrod and brush. The deer like to bed there, and will mill around during the day feeling secure.

I would add that he could even enhance it with the introduction of a few food source species

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"Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote." -- Benjamin Franklin

"The trouble with Socialism is, sooner or later you run out of other people's money." - Margaret Thatcher

"When you subsidize poverty and failure, you get more of both.." - James Dale Davidson, National Taxpayers Union

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On 8/25/2016 at 1:45 PM, Culvercreek hunt club said:

I would add that he could even enhance it with the introduction of a few food source species

We did this with a 20 acre field which hasn't been worked in two seasons now. Had to mow some willow off in spots which provided excellent shooting lanes. Natural clovers and vetch in mowed areas were a draw. 

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I’m in the leave it and mow a small path    I rattled a small 6 up out of one by my stand. Never knew he was there beforehand.  Also had a buck chase two does into it having other does pop up out.  Shot my buck slowly entering it even though by then in was flattened with snow. I’m sure he was scent checking does as nose was to ground and slow pace towards it.  

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Before you mow you need to see if it used for nesting ,bedding ,cover ,ect.. if your short on food on the property then perhaps a food plot is in order.more often than not your missing cover bedding  nesting and bugging areas..removing them will result in a net loss of wildlife that a food plot cannot replace

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I've hunted almost everyday of my life.. the rest have been wasted!

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22 hours ago, G-Man said:

Before you mow you need to see if it used for nesting ,bedding ,cover ,ect.. if your short on food on the property then perhaps a food plot is in order.more often than not your missing cover bedding  nesting and bugging areas..removing them will result in a net loss of wildlife that a food plot cannot replace

i agree more often than not cover is king.

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Im a HUGE fan of standing golden rod! As mentioned if food is needed, id turn "some" of it into a food source but golden rod provides cover for many critters, and usually good browse mixed in as well. I love when Golden rod is left alone and stands 4-5' tall. When the pressure is on or conditions get crappy.. Its a good place to find bedded deer..

And if it needs to be mowed to control saplings every year.. Mow it in the winter when ground has frozen and the plants fall to the ground.. 

Have found many antler sheds in golden rod over the years too

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