How to Plant Egyptian Wheat for a Successful Food Plot?

If you’re looking to plant a food plot, it’s important to choose the right type of plant that will provide the necessary nutrition to attract and sustain them. 

One option to consider is planting Egyptian wheat, which is easy to grow and maintain, and offers several advantages for a successful food plot. 

What is Egyptian Wheat and Why is it Ideal for a Food Plot?

How to Plant Egyptian Wheat

Understanding the Basics of Egyptian Wheat

Egyptian wheat is an annual grass that belongs to the sorghum family. It grows up to 10 feet in height, making it an excellent source of cover for deer and other game birds.

The Advantages of Planting Egyptian Wheat

One of the biggest advantages of planting Egyptian wheat is that it provides excellent food and cover for whitetail deer. The large seed heads produce a lot of grain, making it attractive to deer and other wildlife. 

Because it is an annual grass, it is easy to maintain and does not require a lot of upkeep.

The Nutritional Value of Egyptian Wheat for Whitetails

Egyptian wheat provides excellent nutrition for whitetail deer. The stalk and leaves are high in protein and carbohydrates, making it a great source of energy for deer during the fall and winter months. 

The loose seed heads provide a good source of fat for deer, which is important for maintaining their health and energy levels.

Preparing the Plot for Planting Egyptian Wheat

Cleaning and Tilling the Soil

Before you can plant Egyptian wheat, you need to prepare the plot by cleaning and tilling the soil. This will help to remove any weeds or other unwanted plants that could compete with the wheat for nutrients and water. 

Make sure to till the soil to a depth of at least six inches to ensure that the roots of the wheat can grow deep and access the necessary nutrients.

Testing the Soil for Nutrient Content and pH Levels

In addition to tilling the soil, it’s important to test the soil for nutrient content and pH levels. This will help you to determine whether you need to add any fertilizer or other soil amendments to ensure that the wheat has access to the necessary nutrients. The ideal pH level for Egyptian wheat is between 5.5 and 7.5.

Choosing the Right Members of the Sorghum Family

When choosing members of the sorghum family to plant in your food plot, make sure to select those varieties that are well-suited for your area. 

This will help to ensure that the wheat grows and produces well. Some popular varieties of sorghum for deer food plots include grain sorghum and forage sorghum.

Planting and Maintaining Egyptian Wheat

Planting the Egyptian Wheat Seeds

The best time to plant Egyptian wheat is in the late spring or early summer, when the soil temperature has warmed to at least 60 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Plant the seeds at a rate of approximately 25-30 pounds per acre, broadcasting them evenly across the plot. Make sure to cover the seeds with soil to a depth of about 1/2 inch to protect them from drying out.

Applying Fertilizer and Watering the Planted Seeds

After planting the seeds, it’s important to apply fertilizer and water to help them grow. Fertilizer should be applied at a rate of approximately 100-120 pounds per acre, and water should be applied as needed to keep the soil evenly moist. It’s important not to over-water the seeds, as this can cause them to rot.

Controlling Weeds and Keeping the Plot Screened

As the wheat begins to grow, it’s important to control weeds and keep the plot screened to ensure that the wheat has access to the necessary nutrients and sunlight. Use a weed-eater or mower to keep the weeds at bay, and use a food plot screen to keep deer and other wildlife from eating the wheat before it matures.

Harvesting and Utilizing Egyptian Wheat for Forage

When is Egyptian Wheat Mature Enough for Harvest?

Egyptian wheat typically matures around 110 days after emergence. Look for mature seed heads on the stalk, which will be full and heavy. 

You can also rub your hand over the top of the seed head to see if the seeds are loose and ready for harvest.

Harvesting Egyptian Wheat for Whitetail Forage

When harvesting Egyptian wheat for whitetail forage, it’s important to wait until the seed heads are fully mature and the seeds are loose. 

Cut the stalks and allow them to dry for several days, then thresh the seed heads to remove the seeds. The seeds can then be used to supplement a whitetail deer’s diet during the fall and winter months.

Using Egyptian Wheat to Supplement a Whitetail Deer’s Diet

One of the best ways to use Egyptian wheat to supplement a whitetail deer’s diet is to plant it in a summer food plot. This will provide a good source of nutrition for deer during the summer months, when other food sources may be scarce. 

You can use the plot screen to keep deer from eating the wheat until it reaches maturity.

In conclusion, planting an Egyptian wheat food plot can be a great way to attract and sustain whitetail deer on your property. 

By following these tips for preparing, planting, and maintaining the plot, you can ensure a successful and abundant harvest of this nutritious and attractive food source.

Q: What is Egyptian Wheat and why is it used for food plots?

A: Egyptian Wheat is an annual grass that can grow over 10 feet tall. It’s commonly used as a food plot screen for whitetails, providing cover and entry/exit routes. It’s also known for its extreme height and strong stalks. It provides some food value, but its main use is for cover.

Q: What’s the best way to plant Egyptian Wheat for a food plot?

A: Egyptian Wheat is best planted in the spring after the danger of frost has passed. It requires about 15-20 pounds of seed per acre and needs to be planted in well-drained soil. It’s best planted after native grasses have been removed or burned, and it’s important to use high-quality seed for the best results.

Q: Can Egyptian Wheat be used in the transition zone?

A: Yes, Egyptian Wheat can be used in the transition zone. It grows best on fertile soil with adequate rainfall. In some cases, it may require irrigation if rainfall is not sufficient.

Q: What’s the maximum height that Egyptian Wheat can reach?

A: Egyptian Wheat can reach over 10 feet tall in some cases. It’s known for its tall growth structure and strong stalks.

Q: How long does it take for Egyptian Wheat to germinate?

A: Although some seeds may germinate quickly, it can take up to two weeks for Egyptian Wheat to fully germinate. It’s important to keep the soil moist during this time and to wait until after the danger of frost has passed before planting.

Q: What’s the best seed variety for planting Egyptian Wheat?

A: There are several good seed varieties for planting Egyptian Wheat, including “Trophy Hunter” and “Golden Spike.” It’s important to purchase high-quality seed from a reputable dealer for the best results.

Q: Can Egyptian Wheat be used to attract quail as well as deer for hunting?

A: Although Egyptian Wheat is primarily used for whitetail habitat, it can also be used to attract quail. The tall growth structure provides cover and nesting habitat for quail.

Q: How much Egyptian Wheat seed do I need to plant per acre?

A: It’s recommended to plant 15-20 pounds of Egyptian Wheat seed per acre for the best results.

Q: Can I plant Egyptian Wheat from seeds harvested from the last growing season?

A: Yes, you can use seeds from the last growing season to plant Egyptian Wheat. However, it’s important to test the seed germination rate before planting to ensure the best results.

Q: Is Egyptian Wheat good for seed production?

A: Yes, Egyptian Wheat can be used for seed production. It’s known for its high seed yield and is often used as a cover crop for this purpose.

Conclusion

Egyptian wheat is an excellent food plot screening option for wildlife due to its fast growth, dense cover, and nutritious seeds. By following the tips and advice on planting, maintenance, and harvesting, you can create a successful food plot screen that benefits both you and the wildlife on your property.

Egyptian wheat is not only an attractive and functional food plot screen but also provides essential habitat and food sources for quail and other game birds. By incorporating Egyptian wheat into your food plot strategy, you can support a thriving ecosystem and enjoy the benefits of a diverse and healthy wildlife population.

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