How To Control Weeds With Goats
Weed management is an issue that many homeowners as well as landowners and farmers face, weeds can become a real problem especially if control measures are not taken. If weeds are left to grow freely can present many challenges some of which include the encouragement of disease, a harbourage for insect pests, competes with garden plants for water, sunlight, and nutrients.
Will encourage the presence of rodents and other unwanted wildlife, weeds can also distract from the beauty of a landscape or property decreasing its value, I have taken on many weed control projects on so many garden projects and have felt the pain of bringing complete control. There are many methods to weed control including hand weeding, crop rotation, burning, plowing which is a method that’s used in agriculture, and the use of herbicides.
But another method that has been around since the days of our ancestors in fact for several centuries is using goats for weed control, this method of using goats is a biological control method known as goatscaping which is a safe and effective approach to weed control.
It’s recorded that during world war 1 the White House ordered the use of sheep grazing to maintain large areas of lawns because the US was reserving men to fight in the war because they would not be able to take care of people’s lawns. After the war had ended these men return to their lawn care jobs.
The Advantage of Goatscaping
It’s not that common but herds of goats have been spotted on aces of properties grazing on weeds, for some persons this may be a strange but exciting experience but the reason for this is the benefits their (goat’s) presence brings.
1. Less contamination or Air Pollution: Large land equipment or machinery that’s used to control weeds can pollute the air with fumes which is not good for humans, pets, and wildlife.
2. Stepping on Weeds: Weeds are also destroyed by the goat’s hooves, while they are grazing, weeds are eliminated as they step on them.
3. A Goats Saliva: A goat’s saliva is known to contain an enzyme that aids in the neutralizing of several weed seed types, once the weed seeds go through the goat’s system and the seeds are passed out or excreted the seeds will no longer germinate.
4. Fertilizer: The goat’s manure is a good source of fertilizer because it’s a natural organic, this natural organic will encourage healthy plants.
5. Making Profit: The goat’s manure because it’s a natural organic can be sold, and good profits can be made.
6. Goats Manure: Goats’ manure that’s known as pellets is not messy like other manure making it easy to collect.
7. Goats can Get to Hard to Reach Places: Goats can reach places where weeds are in difficult spots and are considered dangerous if humans try to venture into those places to remove weeds, goats are natural climbers.
8. Recycling of pellets: Pellets that are known as goats droppings is broken down by soil microbes and recycled back into the soil which conditions the soil for garden use. So goats are not only consuming weeds but are fertilizing the area at the same time.
A Word of Warning: Be mindful however that before allowing goats into an area to graze the area should be walked to search for and remove objects that can cause injury. Search for barbed wire, broken glass, rusted metal, plastic, and hunting traps.
Goats for Hire
If you’re in search of goats for hire ensure that the company you’re seeking to hire is reputable, do a background check, and also ask for references. The grazing contractor should provide an estimate based on the size or the acreage. This estimate should include the start and the duration dates, be mindful also that the cost may increase depending on a number of other factors besides the acreage.
How accessible is water to goats, the number of goats that are used, if the work is to be expected at an expected date additional goats may be needed which can increase the cost, the difficulty of the terrain, loading and unloading the goats along with a few other factors.
Using goats will not bring quick results like the use of herbicides or a machine but goats are a safe approach when it comes to weed control helping to keep the environment clear of herbicide drift-off and machine engine fumes as well.
The final word on goatscaping weed control
The use of goats to eliminate weeds is a win-win because while these animals are feasting on weeds those weeds, in turn, are transformed into natural organics that are beneficial to humans and plant life. The method of using goats to clear weeds from large properties is a great way to manage weeds but would it look strange for a herd of goats to be on the property of a residential home that sure would look funny and besides the removal of weeds goats will eat your flower beds herbs and vegetables as well. Goats do an amazing job of clearing large amounts of weeds by consuming them which is a safe approach to weed control.
About the author
Norman loves being in the garden, both at home and for his job....
he is 'Natures Little helper' being outdoors, growing his vegetables and flowers from an early age.
Now having spent over 22 years in the profession he want to give some of his knowledge to others...
his vast array of hints and tips you will find scattered over this site will help you no end growing plants in your garden.