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Food Plot Uses For Chufas

Chufas are a bunch grass with a peanut like underground nut - used for food plots of deer, turkey, hogs and wild hogs. This plant produces "nuts / seed" underground on its root system (called tubers) that are similar to peanuts, if you have ever seen hogs rooting peanuts, they go after chufas the same way. Plant in spring through summer - Some reseeding (biennial growth) may occur, but for best results replant each spring. Wildlife digs up the chufas once they mature. Chufa Food Plot

Chufas are a food plot plant that are one of the most popular foods for wild turkeys. Chufa plants have underground tubers, which are part of the plant that turkeys eat. One chufas tuber will produce a plant that can grow to 15-75 tubers when mature. Turkeys find the tubers by scratching them from just under the surface of the ground. The tubers are high in protein and fat, which makes them especially nutritious for wild turkeys. Chufa can also make an excellent food source for other wildlife including deer and ducks.

Chufa plants grow well in the southern half of the US from Northern California across to Southern Iowa and even Southern Pennsylvania. Chufa plants grow in a variety of soil, but perform best on well-drained, sandy or loamy soils. Clay soils can support chufa. When growing in clay soils, lightly turn the soil in the fall to expose the tubers. This practice can be done periodically to extend the food supply into winter and early spring. Simply plow several strips twice a month until the entire field has been plowed. Generally, chufa will grow anywhere that corn can be successfully grown.

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Planting Chufas For Food Plots

Planting: Plant 40 lbs per acre; Food Plots: 2-3 lbs per 1000 sq. ft. Planting Depth of 1½ inches. Plot sizes should be at least 1/4 acre for best results. Maturity takes 100-125 days. Plant spring through summer. (April - August depending on location). Chufas mature in approximately 110-120 days after emergence.

Chufas are best planted in rotational plots to cut down on disease possibility relating to tuberous growths that are grown in the same ground yearly. Chufas are easily introduced to a population of wildlife that may not be familiar with the tubers by scratching a few to the surface at maturity and leaving them to be found. These are especially a good food source to plant near trees that produce acorns. Chufa is sold in wildlife seed mixes for small divided food plots for the attraction of turkeys and provide a longer lasting food source when some of the other crops have disappeared. Plant at the rate of 25-50 lb. to the acre in divided ¼- ½ acre sections with the addition of fertilizer with the 10-10-10 ratio.

You will often need to assist wildlife in knowing where to find the chufas by digging so as to expose some of the chufas tubers to the birds, etc. Once they find the tubers they will scratch to locate additional tubers. You will know they have been active when you see all the digging activity at your food plot. We recommend replanting Chufas every year as volunteer crop chufas generally grow too much of a root mass to produce the desired chufa tubers. A newly seed crop will produce the correct plant density desired for tuber production. Chufas grow best in more sandy soils

Turkeys especially are attracted to Chufas, with this probably being the single most preferred food plant that attracts wild turkeys. Planting and growing Chufas is a fairly simple process, involving broadcasting the seed and disking them into the soil. Good soil moisture and temperature is important for germination success. Germination can be anywhere from 10 days to over 30 days depending on condition. Chufa is an old plant of the south that has been grown for years for wild hogs, turkey and deer. Chufa has a peanut like tuber and is easily broadcast planted onto a full cultivated or lightly disked food plot area. Although chufa can re-grow yearly the stand will be lesser in quantity and smaller tuber output will be the result.

Chufas For Food Plots

The Chufa Seed Sold By Seedland

The Chufa seed that we sell here at Seedland are often imported from Europe (Primarily Spain).  When available we try to source and sell US produced Chufas but the cheap import prices have forced almost all US growers out of the business.  We are finding it difficult to locate any US grown chufas the past several years.  When available we do purchase US grown types but have not been able to do so the past several years. The European chufas produce somewhat smaller size seeds and typically you may can plant less lbs. per acre because of the tuber size.

See our zone map above for planting information.


Planting & Growing Chufa For Food Plots

Type: warm season annual sedge

Uses: This annual nut sedge will mature in about 100 days, producing underground nuts or tubers that turkey, deer, ducks and hogs cannot resist. Chufa will make an excellent plot by itself or mixes well with other plants. Turkey will visit chufa fields time and time again searching for buried tubers.

Date: April - May
Rate: 50 lbs./acre or 1 ¼ lbs./1000 sq. ft.
Depth: 1-2" deep

More Planting Instructions:
Seed should be broadcast at a rate of 10-12 lbs. per 1/4 acre on a well-prepared seed bed. After broadcasting cover the seeds with a harrow, disk or drag so that you achieve a planting depth of 1 to 2 inches (soil cover).

Establishment of 3 to 4 plants per sq. ft of coverage is an adequate stand. Apply lime if needed to bright the pH to between 5.5 and 7.0. A application of a balanced fertilizer such as the Pennington Wild Game Fertilizer or a 10-10-10 at rate of 400 lbs. per acre (100 lbs. per 1/4 acre) will also help with growth and establishment..

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