HOW do I get rid of them in the pasture and not poison Rascal?? I've pulled them up, sprayed them with pepper mix, cut them down, used a "horse safe" homemade weed killer, and burnt the area they keep growing in. Rascal doesn't eat them (that I know of) but I don't like them being in the pasture!
They are all over our fields too! They are so pretty. I had no idea they were poisonous to horses until the farm owner told me. She doesn't seem concerned. She said the horses wont eat them and she's been doing this for a very long time so I guess she would know. I figure I will only worry if she worries.
We use a variety of chemicals on our pasture including Cimarron (sp?) and 2-4-D which will kill buttercups on our pasture. My dad is very picky about how the property looks, plus Thor is allergic to some types of grasses so we try to only have bermuda. We always follow the directions and have never had a horse get sick from it.
We use 2-4-D also and it will get rid of them. You may have to spray the area a couple of consecutive years to get them for good. You can graze back on this chemical pretty soon after spraying. Maybe you could divide your pasture and do it in sections.
Well it looks like temporary pasture for Rascal *sigh* They are all over his pasture and I'd like to get them gone in one swoop. Thanks for the chemical suggestions :) Now if I can just get that patch of briars with the same stuff LOL
Buttercups are opportunistic, and will take over when the good grasses are threatened. They are a sign of both poor soil and overgrazing. Managing the pasture so the desirable grasses can thrive is a much better option than spraying weed killer, IMO.
Take a soil test and run it through your local extension agent and get fertilizer and lime recommendations, and apply both as needed this fall.
I'd also recommend rotating your pasture - if need be run temporary fence down the middle and only graze half at a time.
I second getting a soil analysis, although that will not solve the problem completely it will help to have a better balanced pasture. We get a soil test regularly from our extension service (as well as hay and grass analysis, hey it's free knowledge so why not?) and luckily the plant that sells bulk lime and fertilizer is a few miles from the house. We have two horses on ten acres and the buttercups always start appearing along the shared fence line with one particular neighbor whose spare field is full of them. So frustrating! There are worse plants out there though so I count myself lucky its just the occasional buttercup popping up.