Clovers include white, red, subterranean, and crimson. Each has benefits over the other depending on your situation. White Clover is a perennial that does well on our area and provides quality forage throughout the spring and fall. Popular varieties are Ladino, Durana, Osceola, Kopu II, and Patriot. These are slower to get established, often not filling in until the summer of the following year. Crimson Clover is a fast establishing annual clover that can be hunted the same season as it is planted, unlike the perennial clovers. It seeds out in mid-spring. Red Clover is a drought resistant clover that usually last up to two years in our area. Subterranean clover can do well in the shade of thinned pine stands in the southeastern part of NC. When planting clover it a good idea to plant with a cereal grain at 30-40 lbs acre. The cereal grains act as a nurse crop and protect the clover seedlings until they can become established.
Cereal Grains include oats, winter rye, and winter wheat. Oats are highly preferred, but can be winter killed at 10 degrees. Winter wheat is also highly preferred. It tolerates colder temperatures than oats. Winter rye is slightly less preferred in my experience, but has other benefits. Rye grows on poor soil, can be top sewn, and has fibrous root system that makes an excellent scavenger of nitrogen from previous crops. It also has allelopathic properties. This means that rye residue can chemically keep many weed seeds, such as foxtail, pigweed, purslane, and ragweed from ever germinating. If grown primarily for the allelopathic properties, such as a nurse crop with clover, it is best to maintain low nitrogen levels during the growing season for the rye. This seems to increase the concentration of the chemicals that control the weeds.
Brassicas include turnips, rape, kale, and radishes. They actually do best planted in late summer, around September 1, or early as mid August if moisture is adequate for germination. These have a high N requirement. Plan on topdressing 40 days after planting. Deer use in our area varies from hammering it right away to never touching it. Normally, it sees use in January and February when other foods are in short supply.