Contributors to this thread:
Brassica use in Midwest
What's your experience with them in the Midwest when surrounded by agricultural fields. Any preferred varieties?
I have had tremendous success with frigid forage's Big N Beasty. We had one of the worst droughts on record this year and my fields looked like the dust bowl through early September. Not sure how but ended up like this by late September.
Simply the best. Deer are browsers. Late season a must have
For hunting after a frost they can't be beat. Deer love them! I've always used the standard cover crop mix with purple top turnips and radishes
They only use them late season for me, in MO, but hit them hard after periods of extended freezes. Sugar is more available inside the plant after freezes, supposedly. However, I had former clients I planted them for who had browsing of leaves soon after planting. I see mostly the bulbs being devoured, again after freezing. So, I like turnips, radishes and the deer's favorite on my farm-winter bulbs and sugar beets. Nice looking plot there!
My dogs love them after they start rotting. Never had much luck with them in the back yard. Finally just planted clover and the deer thank me almost daily.
Craig, I use Grandpa Ray's Frosty Delight (a 5 brassica mix). The response took a year to really get going, so stay with it if you try it.
I overseed into beans and corn about 3 lbs acre on or about July 20th (MN) right before a rain. I did this to 16 acres this year. Fertilize with 125 lbs acre of 46-0-0 (straight nitrogen) at the same time. I then come back on or about August 15 and overseed about 4 lbs acre right before a rain.
This gives you two stages of growth with the earlier planting really putting on the bulbs for late season use and the later planting being smaller and more tender:)
I think it is the ultimate "yield/acre enhancer" nearly tripling the amount of food I can grow on one acre over just beans or just corn.
You can also overseed winter rye, oats and triticale mix into the key areas (near stands)at about 50 lbs acre in early September (once again right before a rain is perfect)
Mark W nailed it. It may take a couple of years for them to develop a palette for them, but come late season, there’s not much of anything that’s a better attractant IMO.