Chufa…The time to plant is now!
A little time and effort spent now will pay off in spades next spring. Why Plant chufa? Chufa provides turkeys with a wonderful source of fat, vitamins, oils, fiber (yes turkeys need it too), carbs, and protein. So while chufa certainly attracts turkeys, it provides them with a super-quality food that helps sustain a healthy population of gobblers and hens. What types of soils are best to plant a chufa patch in? Generally speaking chufa does best in sandy-loam type soils that are slightly acidic (ph 5.5-7.5). How long will a chufa patch continue to be productive? Chufa is a perennial sedge that can be productive from 2-4 years. For optimal production, fertilize and replant parts of your patch (as needed) each June or July. One patch that I helped plant produced for 5 years! Also, if you are in an area with wild hogs you should probably invest in a one or two strand electric fence with a solar charging system. What size is best and what methods are used in planting chufa? Most experts recommend planting a patch no smaller than an acre. When planting, it is extremely important to have a well prepared seed bed. This can be achieved by disking the plot thoroughly then liming and fertilizing as needed. Next, I recommend spraying with glyphosate to help eliminate most of the weeds that will compete with the chufa. When planting chufa, I always broadcast 30-50 lbs per acre then lightly cover them with approximately 1/2″ of soil. You can also use a no-drill or a drop seeder if you prefer. Once your patch has been planted be vigilant in your watch for weeds. It may become necessary to use a herbicide to control the weed competition – be sure to ask your local feed and seed expert or county extension agent about specific herbicides for chufa. It will take about 90+ days for the chufa to grow and produce the tubers that turkeys love. Where do I buy chufa? Check with your local feed and seed store or contact the National Wild Turkey Federation www.nwtf.org to order. Good luck with your planting. Please keep me posted on your progress and feel free to email me with any questions. Eric@GreatSouthernLand.com.
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