Seeding for goat pasture

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Dale in Ar, Sep 18, 2007.

  1. Dale in Ar

    Dale in Ar Well-Known Member

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    I need some advice,I am going to buy some seed in the near future to seed my goat pasture.I was wondering what seed to get that I can sow without tilling or covering.My area is rocky,shaded,and full of stumps.This means that I can't till the seed under.I plan on broad casting the seed and allowing it to come up if possible.I was also wondering what to sow in the spring.I sowed some lespedesa this year but didn't have any luck.
     
  2. Pops2

    Pops2 Well-Known Member

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    you might want to look into the blends sold for deer food plots.
     

  3. BillHoo

    BillHoo Well-Known Member

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    I'd heard that goats are not grazers. They're browsers meaning they eat off of bushes and shrubs.
     
  4. oberhaslikid

    oberhaslikid Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I did this also as they cleared out the saplings and sun started to come in to the field. I started out with some red clover and white clover and alfalfa.the clover made it but the alfalfa was a bust .The next year I had some seedy hay and cleaned out the hay manger and broadcast the seed and it grew. I used a few bales to seed the lot and it worked.I was told to use bird seed to sow in the spring some will come back and they will eat the sunflowers and the like that year.I have tried oats this year and it came up and got to 6 inches and died out too dry maybe.
     
  5. Woodroe

    Woodroe Well-Known Member

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    Native grasses and weeds will give the least trouble as far as maintenance and the goats will thrive on it.
     
  6. Liese

    Liese Namaste

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    Shaded - that's going to give you some problems since grasses like lots of sun. Can you graze the goats in there now? If so and they can open the canopy as Ober mentioned you'll begin to have more options. Earlier this year, I think, Jim S. showed pix of his goat fields where he had done nothing more than let the goats work on it. This is our first year with very poor, previously corn cropped fields, that are played out from years of tobacco. I was a little too quick with mowing after the goats on my first field, so it is now much more suited to the sheep. So learnt to leave it alone and definitely cross fencing is necessary since they'll make a desert out of it if you don't move them along. All my plans to overseed this year are out due to the drought but I am still hoping to frost seed this Feb/Mar. In my sheep fields I also rotate thru a small hen flock - hopefully some of the oats/wheat scratch they miss will come up later but mostly they are there to add fertility. I clean out the waste hay from the hen house and push it to a new place about weekly. You might also want to look at putting pigs in a part of the field to "hog" it out and then reseed. I understand they'll take care of snakes too which here would be a concern. So if I were you I would probably look at rotating thru goats, pigs, chickens in that order and then watched what happened. Hope that gives you some food for thought.
     
  7. big rockpile

    big rockpile If I need a Shelter

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    Ok knowing where you are i would say you have lots lots of Oak.I would say get a saw open up the Timber,rotate the Goats so they don't eat it off too slick.If it is slick put some Clover seed on it keep the Goats off until it get a good foothold.

    bigt rockpile
     
  8. YuccaFlatsRanch

    YuccaFlatsRanch Well-Known Member Supporter

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    My pastures are SEEDED in Ranchero Frio Bermuda with a fair amount of native grasses growing in there as well. In September of each year I broadcast annual Rye grass and a mix of oats, wheat, and triticale for winter and early spring pasture. In the winter I over seed with Hubam Clover which is a medium tall sweet white clover which grows well through the winter and spring until the bermuda is up and growing fast. The Hubam clover also reseeds itself, so each year it takes a little less seed. The clover is treated with an innoculant.

    I broadcast all of this, but first I drag the fields with a drag harrow. It costs me about $250.00 to overseed the 4.5 acres I have, but the cost is quickly offset by the hay I don't have to feed. Both sheep and goats (as well as the local deer) do well on this.
     
  9. Dale in Ar

    Dale in Ar Well-Known Member

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    I have been cutting some of the bigger trees and let the goats eat the leaves.So I am trying to open up the area.I do have several oaks left but they are the bigger of the trees.I am also cutting the smaller oaks and there is some sun light getting through.I was told by a fellow that had goats that he fed seed to his goats and let them spread the seed.Would this work very well or be a waste of money and seed???I was going to look into winter wheat and oats for this fall to broadcast.Going to call and see how much the cost will be.Thanks for all the replies. Dale
     
  10. MB

    MB Well-Known Member

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  11. Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians

    Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians Well-Known Member

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    Goats have the fastest metabolisims of all ruminants, so they do not have whole anything in their manure.

    I live in the woods, slowly we have had a pasture emerge (a forest fire helps, so did the electrical company mowing under the power lines, in the full sun...native grasses, weeds, small immature plants. I brush hog it and then broadcast by hand, rye. I am also using a deer plot mixture which has oats, vetch, clover, peas etc.. in it. I also broadcast wild bird seed. This gives me a variety of things coming up all winter and into the spring here. Other than this one mowing, I do not mow these pastures, as a goat eating with her head down is re-paritisizing herself. Vicki
     
  12. cseger1

    cseger1 Well-Known Member

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    What time of year do you brush hog Vicki?
     
  13. Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians

    Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians Well-Known Member

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    Next weekend :) This coincides with breeding here, we rarely have parasite problems or much grass growth in the fall into the winter, while the girls are bred.

    I have done it both ways, broadcast then brush hog, which gets the grass seed under the heavy downed grass and weeds, and broadcast after brush hogging. I do the later because it scarry walking out through this thick waist high stuff with the snakes we have seen this year! Then we will hope the tropical depression brings us that rain!

    Vicki
     
  14. Alice In TX/MO

    Alice In TX/MO More dharma, less drama. Supporter

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  15. Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians

    Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians Well-Known Member

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    Having actually discussed this at length at a goat meeting, the amounts of grain fed is actually quite significant when you figure out the last chart.

    And this: Quote{For the production of organic milk or high milk high in conjugated linoleic acid, goats may produce significant levels of milk from high quality pasture alone. }end, Quote.

    The word organic is in itself not true when in their own study they could not naturally control parasites and had deaths of stock on pasture due to worms. So grass fed goats with high levels of cancer freeing CLA is wonderful, but is simply not dooable in the south, and not sustainable because of winter freeze in the north, unless you only milked from spring until late summer.

    A happy medium, since they originaly had their herd on cement with grain and alfalfa hay only...would be browse and pasture for your goats, supplemented with grain on the milkstand only to keep them in good flesh and to keep milk levels high enough to make a profit. Vicki