Best Food Plots for Deer in Minnesota: A Guide to Attracting and Nourishing Whitetails

Best food plot for deer in mn – When it comes to deer hunting in Minnesota, having the best food plot for deer can make all the difference. Whether you’re a seasoned hunter or just starting out, creating an irresistible food source for deer is crucial for success.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll dive into the types of food plots suitable for Minnesota deer, explore planting and maintenance techniques, and uncover strategies to enhance their appeal. So, grab your boots and let’s get ready to create the ultimate deer magnet!

Types of Food Plots for Deer in Minnesota

To attract and sustain deer populations in Minnesota, establishing food plots is crucial. These plots provide a supplemental food source, especially during critical winter months and spring green-up. Several types of food plots are suitable for deer in Minnesota, each with its own advantages and disadvantages.


  • Benefits: High protein content, palatable, improves soil fertility
  • Drawbacks: Requires good drainage, susceptible to drought and insects


  • Benefits: High protein and energy content, long-lived, drought-tolerant
  • Drawbacks: Expensive to establish, requires well-drained soils


  • Benefits: High in nutrients, cold-tolerant, provides winter forage
  • Drawbacks: Can be toxic if overgrazed, requires specific soil conditions


  • Benefits: High protein content, attracts deer during fall
  • Drawbacks: Requires fertile soils, susceptible to deer browsing

Planting and Maintenance of Food Plots

Best food plot for deer in mn

Proper preparation and maintenance are crucial for successful food plots. These involve soil preparation, seed selection, planting, and weed control. Understanding the importance of timing and implementing the right techniques will help establish and sustain thriving food sources for deer in Minnesota.

Site Preparation

Begin by selecting a suitable site with adequate sunlight and drainage. Remove any existing vegetation and till the soil to a depth of 6-8 inches. Amend the soil with lime or fertilizer as needed to achieve optimal pH levels and nutrient content.

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Seed Selection

Choose a seed blend that meets the specific needs of deer in your area. Consider the season, soil type, and deer preferences. Common options include clover, alfalfa, chicory, and brassicas.


Plant seeds according to the recommended rate and depth. Use a seed drill or broadcast spreader to ensure even distribution. Firm the soil after planting to ensure good seed-to-soil contact.

Weed Control

Regular weed control is essential to prevent competition for nutrients and sunlight. Apply herbicides or use manual methods such as hand-pulling or mowing. Monitor the food plot regularly and control weeds promptly.


Throughout the growing season, maintain the food plot by mowing or disking to control weeds and promote new growth. Fertilize as needed to maintain optimal nutrient levels. Irrigate during dry periods to ensure consistent moisture.

Location and Size of Food Plots

Best food plot for deer in mn

Food plot location is crucial for attracting and sustaining deer populations. Consider these factors when selecting a site:*

If you’re serious about bagging a buck this season, it’s crucial to establish a food plot that will attract and hold deer. While there are many different types of food plots to choose from, some of the most effective options for Minnesota include clover, alfalfa, and brassicas.

Once you’ve got your food plot in place, you’ll need to select the right firearm for the job. A 10mm rifle is an excellent choice for deer hunting, as it offers a combination of power and accuracy. And with a variety of ammo options available, you can tailor your load to the specific conditions you’ll be hunting in.

Once you’ve got your gear in order, all that’s left to do is wait for the deer to come to you!


Deer prefer sunny areas for feeding and bedding. Choose plots that receive at least six hours of sunlight daily.

  • -*Drainage

    Well-drained soils are essential to prevent waterlogging and root rot. Avoid areas with poor drainage or standing water.

  • -*Proximity to Deer Habitat

    Locate food plots near deer bedding areas, travel corridors, or natural feeding grounds. This increases the likelihood of deer finding and utilizing the plot.

Size of Food Plots

The appropriate size of a food plot depends on the number of deer in the area:*

-*Small Herds (10-25 deer)

1-2 acres

  • -*Medium Herds (25-50 deer)

    If you’re planning on planting a food plot for deer in Minnesota, you’ll want to make sure you choose the right plants. Some of the best options include clover, alfalfa, and soybeans. Once you’ve got your food plot established, you’ll need a way to mount the deer heads you harvest.

    A deer head mounting bracket is a great way to display your trophies and keep them looking their best. When choosing a food plot for deer in Minnesota, it’s important to consider the climate and soil conditions. The best food plots will be those that provide deer with the nutrients they need to thrive.

    2-4 acres

  • -*Large Herds (50+ deer)

    4+ acres

Consider also the surrounding habitat and the availability of other food sources. Larger food plots may be necessary if deer have limited access to natural forage.

Attractants and Enhancements

Beyond providing high-quality food, consider incorporating attractants and enhancements to further entice deer to your food plots. These strategies enhance the appeal of your plots and provide additional benefits for the deer.

Salt Licks and Mineral Blocks

Salt licks and mineral blocks are popular attractants for deer. They provide essential minerals and electrolytes that deer may not get from their regular diet. Place these blocks near food plots or in areas where deer are known to frequent.

Apple Trees, Best food plot for deer in mn

Apple trees are a natural deer attractant, and planting a few around your food plots can be beneficial. The sweet fruits are a favorite food for deer, and the trees also provide cover and shade.

Cover Crops and Brush Piles

Adding cover crops to your food plots can provide additional shelter and security for deer. Plant species like clover or alfalfa to create a dense ground cover that deer can hide in. Creating brush piles from fallen branches or logs also offers protection and cover.

Seasonal Considerations: Best Food Plot For Deer In Mn

Clover food deer plots minnesota spraying grasses plant

Managing food plots throughout the year is crucial to ensure deer have access to nutritious forage during all seasons. Here’s a guide to optimizing food plots for different seasons and deer needs:

Spring Planting

  • Plant cool-season grasses and legumes in early spring, as they thrive in cooler temperatures.
  • Select species that are palatable to deer, such as oats, wheat, clover, and alfalfa.
  • Prepare the soil by removing weeds, tilling, and adding fertilizer.
  • Plant seeds at the recommended depth and spacing for the species.

Summer Maintenance

  • Water food plots during dry spells to prevent wilting.
  • Fertilize plots every 4-6 weeks to maintain soil nutrients.
  • Mow plots occasionally to control weeds and encourage new growth.
  • Monitor plots for pests and diseases and treat accordingly.

Fall Harvesting

  • Harvest plots in the fall when plants are mature and have reached their peak nutritional value.
  • Leave some standing forage for deer to browse during winter.
  • In areas with heavy snow, consider planting winter-hardy species like winter rye or turnips.
  • Allow plots to rest and recover over the winter before replanting in spring.

Final Conclusion

Food deer plot fall

Creating the best food plot for deer in Minnesota requires careful planning, proper maintenance, and a deep understanding of deer behavior. By following the tips and techniques Artikeld in this guide, you can establish a thriving food source that will attract and nourish whitetails throughout the year.

Remember, a well-managed food plot is not just a hunting spot; it’s an investment in the health and vitality of the deer population. So, embrace the challenge, get your hands dirty, and enjoy the rewards of a successful deer hunting season!

Key Questions Answered

What is the best type of food plot for deer in Minnesota?

The best food plot for deer in Minnesota depends on your specific hunting location and deer population. Clover, alfalfa, brassicas, and soybeans are all popular choices that provide high-quality nutrition and attract deer.

When is the best time to plant a food plot for deer in Minnesota?

The ideal time to plant a food plot for deer in Minnesota is in the spring or fall. Spring planting allows for early growth before the summer heat, while fall planting gives the plants time to establish roots before winter.

How big should a food plot be for deer in Minnesota?

The size of your food plot will depend on the number of deer in your area. A general rule of thumb is to provide at least one acre of food plot per five deer.

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