am i supposed to plant my pasture?
am i supposed to spread seed yearly?
if so, what is the common method?
It depends. My hay man uses RoundUP to kill off everything, first, then plants. I don't like doing that bc RoundUp keeps getting stronger every year. But, after planting you need to keep your horses off of the pasture for one year. The pasture comes in with tender grasses. Horses will rip those out while grazing and you'll just have to replant.
MY horses planting their own pasture, which was in corn when I moved in, by passing through grass seeds from the grass hay I was feeding them.
i have 20 acres fenced in -- part pasture and part forest --- i don't currently have a method to section anything off or keep the horses off of it
pasture has grass ... am i supposed to replant grass? ... overseed it? or something like that?
Your local 4H club or FFA group would be able to help you answer you questions. Other then just planting seed, I would first look into soil testing again 4H or FFA should be able to help.
If the grass is in good shape no need to reseed. Might take a soil sample to an ag place that sells fertilizer and they can tell you what if any fertilizer your ground needs. We've lived on this farm for 15 years and have never had to reseed, just some lime sprinkled over the top and then allowed to soak in from a decent rain before turning the horses back out.
As there are so many different ideas & desires, you will get different views whoever you ask. Traditionally, especially if there's any chance of commercial hay production, people kill off all the different plants that may naturally grow in a pasture, then fertilise, often with super phosphate or such, then seed with 'improved' varieties, such as rye, clover, etc.
BUT if you want healthy pastures, for healthy horses, I'd be inclined to leave the weeds, or selectively knock some of them out, depending what you've got.... unless it's rye & clover, in which case I'd kill it all & start from scratch. I would NOT fertilise with super, but would consider getting a soil analysis & consider top dressing with minerals that may be deficient. And if I felt the need to spread seed, I'd be looking particularly for native, not improved varieties.
how large is your pasture? is there currently grass in it ? Do you irrigate your pasture or 'dry farm ' it ( as in it only gets watered when it rains)?
Are there other neighbors near you that could give you some advice? You need to make sure you do not have any toxic weeds, you can get weed killers and find the burn off time and if they are safe for pastures. I dont recall what the round up time is, 21 days ? or 2d4 which is another good killer for pastures , i also use a weed killer that has Diquat in it, for stinging nettles. You can go to home depot lowes tractor supply etc. Your ground may not need nitrogen, so a soil sample is a good idea. Potassium and phospherous is needed for good pasture, as well as a list of other micro nutrients.
pasture is +/- 10 acres -- horses have free access --- lots of grass in the summer and lots of clover ... some weeds, blackberries, and bull nettle
i do not irrigate or farm at all -- pasture it solely for the horses
I would kill the nettles and transplant the blackberries to a garden site.. yumm black berries !
You should have a farm agency in your area, or good nursery/garden business who could tell you what type of clover, there are pasture mixes with clover in them, Google clover for horses, and you will get all types of info. Some clover is okay some clover is bad.
The County Farm bureau or Ag commissioner should be able to help you.
I'd use a selective spray to knock out the majority of clover to start with. Wouldn't worry about the nettles so much, if the horses eat them. You can do a google search to look at different grass types, to see what you've got. Remember, 'poorer', stemmier stuff on average is better for horses, not rich, green... You might like to ask Merlot here, as they have been doing a heap of research/rehab around the subject of pasture & nutrients.
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