Summer Food Plots for Deer: When & What To Plant

Summer Food Plots for Deer: When & What To Plant

Posted by John on 9th May 2024

Summer is a critical time for deer nutrition, especially as they prepare for the challenges of the upcoming breeding season and the harsh conditions of winter. As such, providing adequate summer food plots for deer is essential for supporting deer health and population dynamics. In this guide, we'll explore the intricacies of summer food plots for deer, covering everything from selecting the right plant species to deer hunting strategies around these summer food plots.

Understanding Summer Nutrition Needs of Deer

Understanding the summer nutrition needs of deer is crucial for supporting their health and population dynamics during this critical time. Deer require a diverse array of nutrients during the summer months, including protein, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, and minerals. These nutrients support vital processes such as antler growth in bucks, fetal development in does, and overall body condition. The availability and quality of forage play a significant role in meeting deer's nutritional requirements, with preferred summer forages including legumes like clover and alfalfa, as well as browse species. Land managers can enhance deer nutrition by providing a diverse mix of forage species and implementing management practices to maintain forage quality and availability throughout the summer.

By understanding the specific nutritional requirements of deer during the summer, land managers can make informed decisions when planning and managing summer food plots. Selecting plant species that provide the necessary nutrients and managing these plots to optimize forage quality and availability are essential strategies. Additionally, rotational grazing or mowing can help maintain plant vigor and quality, ensuring a continuous supply of nutritious forage for deer. Ultimately, supporting deer health and population dynamics during the summer months contributes to the overall sustainability and conservation of deer populations and their habitat.

Maximizing Summer Food Plots for Deer

Selecting the Right Summer Food Plot Species

When selecting plant species for summer food plots, it's essential to consider factors such as soil type, climate, and deer preferences. Various plant species, including clovers, soybeans, and warm-season grasses, are well-suited for summer food plots. Each species offers unique nutritional benefits for deer and can thrive under specific environmental conditions.

Frigid Forage Summer Food Plot Seed Blends

At Frigid Forage we have a variety of Summer food plot blends for Deer, both annual and perennial blends.

  1. Monster Magnet: Monster Magnet seed blend is a true game-changer in wildlife nutrition and attraction. Crafted with precision, it's designed to meet the diverse needs of deer year-round. From nurturing growing bucks and supporting nursing does in the lush summer months to ensuring essential nutrition and irresistible allure during the hunting season and frosty winter spells, this blend is a force of nature like no other. Experience the difference with Monster Magnet.
  2. Plow Down Clover: Our Plow Down Clover cover crop seed blend is a fusion of rapid-growth annual and bi-annual clovers meticulously crafted to deliver an unparalleled green manure cover crop experience. Perfectly suited for those planning to sow a late-season annual such as Big and Beasty or Autumn Quick Plot, this blend sets a new standard for soil enrichment and preparation. Witness the transformative power of Plow Down Clover as it rejuvenates your land for seasons to come.
  3. Pure Trophy Clover: With a perfect blend of five clover varieties (Ladino, Mammoth Red, Medium Red, White Dutch, and Alsike), it offers a high-protein feast for deer and wildlife alike. Versatile and resilient, it thrives in various conditions, from sun to shade, damp to well-drained, clay to loam. Whether in open fields, shaded areas, or woodland trails, Pure Trophy Clover excels, ensuring success in any situation.
  4. Wall Hanger: Our Wall Hanger food plot seed, tailored for sandy soils, perfect for avid Whitetail hunters. Best sown in Spring or late Summer, especially in sunny spots with lighter or sandy soil. Elevate your hunting game with Wall Hanger.
  5. Wild Game Buffet: Our top-selling perennial blend boasts clovers, alfalfa, and brassicas. Ideal for diverse conditions and soil types, it's shade-tolerant, perfect for wooded areas. With shade-tolerant perennial clovers, it's the ultimate choice for shaded woods.
  6. Autumn Quick Plot: Our Autumn Quick Plot Seed is a rapid-growing mix of annuals and biennials crafted for late Summer to early Fall planting. Among our top choices for Fall deer food plots, it's designed to sprout quickly with Rye and Wheat, providing immediate sustenance for deer, while Radishes and Brassicas thrive well into the season. Perfect for late planting or revitalizing food plots, it's your go-to blend for Fall success.
  7. Big-N-Beasty: This is our top-selling brassica blend: four high-protein forage rapes, Daikon Forage Radishes, Purple Top, and Golden Ball turnips. Loved by deer and effortless to plant, it's the ultimate choice for your food plot needs. What more could you ask for in the best brassica blend?

Site Selection and Preparation

Choosing the right location for summer food plots is key to their success. Conducting soil tests and analyzing soil fertility levels can help determine the suitability of a site for planting. Proper preparation techniques, such as soil tillage, weed control, and fertilization, are crucial for creating an environment conducive to plant growth and deer utilization.

Planting Techniques

Timing is critical when planting summer food plots to ensure optimal growth and utilization by deer. Depending on the region, planting typically occurs in late spring or early summer to coincide with favorable weather conditions. Planting methods, such as broadcasting, drilling, or using seed spreaders, should be chosen based on the desired plant species and plot size. Additionally, seeding rates and depths should be carefully calculated to achieve optimal plant establishment.

Maintenance and Management

Managing summer food plots throughout the growing season is essential for maximizing their effectiveness. Regular monitoring of plant growth, coupled with weed control, pest management, and disease prevention measures, helps ensure the continued success of the plots. Making timely adjustments to management practices based on observed plant and deer behavior is critical for maintaining healthy and productive summer food plots.

Enhancing Summer Food Plots with Supplements

Supplemental feeding can complement summer food plots by providing deer with additional nutrients and minerals. Mineral supplements and protein feeds are commonly used to enhance deer nutrition during the summer months. When incorporating supplements alongside natural forage, it's essential to consider factors such as placement, timing, and deer utilization patterns to maximize effectiveness.

Hunting Strategies Around Summer Food Plots

Understanding deer behavior around summer food plots is key to developing successful hunting strategies. Setting up hunting stands and blinds near these plots can increase the likelihood of encountering deer during the hunting season. However, it's essential to practice ethical hunting practices and conservation efforts to ensure the sustainability of deer populations and their habitat.


Summer food plots play a vital role in supporting deer health and population dynamics during a critical time of the year. By selecting the right plant species, preparing the site properly, and implementing effective management practices, land managers can create productive summer food plots that benefit both deer and the ecosystem as a whole. Additionally, incorporating supplemental feeding and strategic hunting strategies can further enhance the value of summer food plots for deer management and conservation efforts.