This year you might want to plant some mast trees, especially if long-term habitat management for whitetails and turkeys is on your agenda.

In the early 1990s, Trebark camo creator Jim Crumley purchased and planted 50 sawtooth oak seedlings on a 300-acre property he owns and hunts on the banks of Virginia’s James River. He clustered 30 of the fast-growing seedlings in one open area, and scattered the rest around.

“They’ve done great. Some trees produced acorns in the eighth fall,” he says. “By the 12th year the trees were 8 to 10 feet tall, and all but four of them were bearing.”

The best part about sawtooth oaks, which came from eastern Asia, is that unlike our native white and red oaks, they bear a reliable crop of nuts each year. “The acorns fall in mid to late September, and deer feed on them throughout October, so you’ve got some great bowhunting opportunities,” notes Crumley. “If I had it to do over again, I’d plant a lot more sawtooths on my land, especially in open areas where they’d get a lot of sun.”

For more on sawtooth oaks and how to plant them, click here.