Hardwoods for Wildlife

Hardwoods have a place in the wildlife food plots to provide food through the hard winter months. Acorns and walnuts are hardy and can last for up to 9 months on the ground making them excellent food source for the game when the rest of the sweeter foods have vanished.

 
 
 A mature Trophy Oak tree in Kansas. The Trophy Oak is in the burr oak family.

A mature Trophy Oak tree in Kansas. The Trophy Oak is in the burr oak family.

Hybrid Oaks

early Drop oak

This Early Drop Oak Tree begins its drop. This specie is more tolerant to water, but you'll want to avoid planting in swamp or wetlands. It will being producing 7-8 years. Hardy for any USDA Zones.

Trophy oak

Trophy Oak is a burr oak that produces acorns up to 1.5" in diameter. The majestic tree is also known to be oak wilt resistant which is sweeping across the plain states moving east. These can be planted in zones 5-9. The Trophy Oak can handle high moisture content in soil, but not in wetlands. 

$18.00/tree includes specialized 60” tree protector, stake, weed mat, controlled release fertilizer, and mycorrizial.


Purdue Black Walnut

Purdue #1 Black Walnut trees are genetically superior black walnut trees which are fast growing and straighter than the common black walnut seedlings. The Purdue #1 Black Walnut is one of the most sought after black walnut cultivar seedlings as a nut tree for plantations market. Purdue University developed cultivars from selections made for good form, rapid height, and diameter growth, primarily for faster timber production. The Purdue Black Walnut are hardy for USDA Zones 4-9.

$18.00/tree includes specialized 60” tree protector, stake, weed mat, controlled release fertilizer, and mycorrizial.

 Purdue Black Walnuts in a 20 year old plantation in Eastern Indiana.

Purdue Black Walnuts in a 20 year old plantation in Eastern Indiana.


 Top of a Swamp Oak Seedling

Top of a Swamp Oak Seedling

Native Oaks

  • Swamp Oak (August Drop) - From the “grows just about anywhere” list.  Swamp whites are known for tolerance to poorly drained soil, they can and do thrive on many other site types.  Swamp Oak is also a good choice for those of you who live up North where it gets too cold for most of the other oaks.

  • Nuttall Oak (November- December Drop)- Red oak is a sure-fire winner for ducks, deer, and folks who don’t think they have a green thumb! Nuttall oaks are easy to establish, and grow like a weed as a young tree. Even better, Nuttalls can tolerate poorly drained sites more so than any other red oak. With the late drop, the acorns become one of the highest carb acorns (about 45%) are on the ground when ducks and bucks need energy the most.

  • Chestnut Oak (September Drop) - The chestnut oak is similar in name but not to be confused with swamp chestnut oak. The acorns as well as the twigs provide food for many types of wildlife, white-tailed deer and wild turkey included. This native tree is a winner for your honey hole hunting spot, or for ornamental landscape use in your yard. The yellowish-orange to rusty brown fall color can provide a stunning shade tree near the cabin as the autumn season rolls around. The chestnut oak is intermediately shade tolerant and prefers dryer upland soil sites. In some places this tree is fairly uncommon, so it can also add some unique variety to your property.

  • Chinkapin Oak (September Drop)- We like to call chinkapin oaks “mule” oaks, mainly to help us remember the scientific name, but also referring to their hardy nature and tolerance of the poorest of sites. Everything about this species is tough, except their acorns, which are considered a delicacy to wildlife. Just ask the mice at our nursery, who have an uncanny knack for singling them out amongst our huge inventory of acorns in storage. We now have to over-winter our chinkapin oak acorns in mouse-proof containers. Did someone say chinkapin oak was a slow grower? We planted a few ten inch seedlings last June, and they were between five and six feet before the first frost!! Think of our chinkapin oaks as candy-corn feeder set to go off for two weeks straight, beginning in late October.

$12.00/tree includes specialized 60” tree protector, stake, weed mat, controlled release fertilizer, and mycorrizial.