Saturday, September 13, 2008


Fall is the time to plant grass. We did this last fall and while it came up really well on the girl's pasture, pretty well on the boy's pasture, our alpacas ate it down. The girl pasture never recovered from spring. As the snow melted it moved as a line across the pasture. Each day the alpacas ate the grass that was at the melt line. They ate it fast enough that it never had time to grow very much. Our problem is twofold. One is that we had too many alpaca on the pasture. The other problem is that the pasture is in the woods and it struggles to grow (especially on the boys' side).

With the girl's pasture we decided to spread seed over the entire pasture, then cover the areas that were bare with hay/straw to help it grow. We did this a couple weeks ago. The bonus was that rain remnants from Hurricane Gustov came just after we planted, giving us a ton of much needed rain.

Here is the girl pasture (taken today). The grass has started to grow (the new grass is the brighter green color):

The boy's pasture was so sparse with grass (due to the fact it is more in the woods). We decided to completely start over planting their pasture. We put down lime to help rid the area of ferns, then a layer of alpaca poop (the best fertiliser). We rototilled the ground, mixing in the poop and lime plus trying to break up the fern roots to kill them off. We let that sit for a couple weeks. This past week we raked the area to smooth it out, then planted grass seed. We covered the entire area with straw. We were certain to get rain this weekend (it is raining as I type this), which we needed desperately to help the seed sprout and grow.

Here is the boy pasture this morning (a bit of rain on my camera lens):

This was not a fun job as, of course, we did it on a hot, humid day. And the hay gave us a rash, so I was itching for a couple days. The grass better come in very nice!

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