Weeds are part of my master plan

Zoe with marshmallow

Marshmallow is just one of the weeds to take off this season

“Weeds are part of my master plan” sounds like a phrase the Dr Evil of Dairy might use, doesn’t it?!

We’ve had a brilliant summer and autumn, which has made the grass and, ahem, the weeds, grow like crazy. Of course, there’s always a silver lining to every cloud and we’re seeing this as an opportunity to eradicate large banks of seed that has acccumulated over time without germinating.

Naturally, the weeds grow best on our best land, the river flats. The flats are next on my list of priorities for renovation and I don’t want new pastures overhwhelmed with thistles, nettles and other unpalatable – or even toxic – weeds.

The flats are rich, deep alluvial soils that retain moisture well during dry times yet drain well during wet times. They get us through summer and their pastures are always the quickest to recover but because the grass species are so old, quality is sometimes lacking.

Still, I’m a little reluctant to renovate them for a few reasons:

1. We rely on them being productive while our drier slopes are close to dormant over summer
2. They do flood and I don’t want to risk erosion
3. We need to be careful not to disturb the balance of soil life

The answer will be to temper my enthusiasm a little, take it gently, and renovate just a couple of our delicious river flat paddocks at a time.

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