What would you do to optimize pasture? - The Horse Forum
 
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post #1 of 3 Old 07-27-2013, 12:36 AM Thread Starter
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What would you do to optimize pasture?

Okay guys, we're brainstorming here.

I have three horses that currently tape ~ 1000, 800 and 700 pounds who live on just over two acres. They're happy together, we have amazing drainage so the pasture is happy all year long and they get supplemented with hay. But this winter I want to optimize their pasture as much as possible and I'm just not sure how to do it. I could hot tape down the center and cut it down to two pastures, everyone gets along so the space isn't an issue in that respect BUT two out of three (because you wont see the old lady galloping around any time soon) like to go tearing back and forth across the field and putting up a fence would definitely get in the way of how much space they have to just run. I'm sure they would accommodate it, but it makes me a little uneasy.

Option two would be to set up paddocks outside of the field. We have two currently, one big one attached to the run in and one small one we just use for holding horses if someone is riding in the field, a pricier option, obviously, as new shelters would have to be put up. But then what? In order to 'rest' the field wouldn't I have to keep them off of it for an extended period? It probably wouldn't help enough to 'stall' at night to justify the cost of new shelters etc. would it?

Or should I just leave them as is and not fix what aint broke? I'd like to preserve their grazing for as long as possible, we've had BEAUTIFUL grass up until this week when it all dried up, and it only really stays dry and icky throughout August, once fall comes and the rain starts up the grass stays nice through most of the year.
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post #2 of 3 Old 07-27-2013, 12:48 AM
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I love the idea of all pastures branching off one sacrifice or management corral. Your shelter, water and mineral can be contained, but made accessible to any pasture with its gate open. Ideally, I believe you should have 4/5 pastures and rotate every week. In a perfect world..;)
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post #3 of 3 Old 07-27-2013, 01:19 AM Thread Starter
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In a perfect world
We have a nice big backyard that we don't use, but the ground is way too soft there. It would add another acre to our pasture but I imagine the horses would sink up to their knees after a couple of weeks. The other issue is that the water is set up along side the currently unfenced arena. When we fence that off we'll have to move the water, keep the gate open or fence off an aisle next to the arena.

We're planning on moving in 3 or so years and then we can set up our dream pasture situation, until then we've got to tough it out
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