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Discussion Starter #1
I have an area about 100' x 50' that's rough field covered in tall grass and weeds (see Before.jpg) and want to clean it up. So far, I've tilled it and run a Brinly disk over it so it looks like After.jpg.

My goal is to smooth it out and replant it with something that will keep the weeds down and be healthy fodder for the neighbor's flock (4 sheep plus 1 goat) and if the flock is unavailable would be attractive and easy to mow a couple of times a year.

What do I need to do to get this ready for seed? I won't be seeding until late summer or early fall because we have dry summers. Do I need to rake out the dead stuff? I know I need to drag it with something to smooth it out (my wife won't let me use her old metal box spring because of its sentimental value :00000060: ) I suppose weighted chain link fence will do. Will I need to roll it to get a firm surface?

Thanks,

Mike
 

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If you don't plant it now,what are you going to do to keep the weeds down until you do?If nothing else is growing there,weeds will.If it's going to be fed to sheep you really don't have to do anything else to it,it would probably be ok to mow occasionally if you have to but it might be a little rough.If you do settle it down a little more,it'll be nicer if you do need to mow it,a lawn roller would work ok.If it were mine,I'd throw some pasture mix on it now,something with ryegrass,timothy and some bluegrass in it,if you put a little nitrogen fertilizer on it you should have a decent stand of grass before long.
 

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AKA Moses Lawnagan
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Ditto the above, get a blend of grasses going, along with some fertilizer, and hope for rain.

Honestly, though, from looking at your 'before' pic, you should have just left what you had, and treated it with a selective herbicide like 2,4D. You don't have to take the animals off for more than a day after spraying. It isn't what you plant that keeps weeds down, it's how high you can keep the grass to keep the weeds choked out. Since you're grazing animals on the land, you will always have some weed problems. Animals tend to favor some parts of a pasture and stay off others, so one part may be waist deep and the other part is almost bare ground. Once some of the areas get high, just keep them mowed to 4 or 5 inches, and if necessary block off the parts that keep getting grazed down so they can recover.

The weighted fence section works pretty good for what you need, and I wouldn't rake out all the dead stuff. Just sow something and cover it over. You'll have to do some weeding this fall and re-do the whole thing again anyway. If nothing else will grow, the weeds will. Down here in the southeast, I fertilize once around September, then again in late November, and the again in March. 18-24-6 works well as a starter fertilizer, about 15 pounds to the acre. Use a fertilizer with a slow release nitrogen.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
If this summer is like most, we'll get almost no rain before September. If I plant anything now, I'll have to water it or it will die.

On the other hand, if I leave it unseeded until fall, any brief showers we might get this summer will cause weed seeds to germinate like you said and I can just run the disk or drag over it to kill them.

My hope is to plant something that will get eaten in late Spring by the flock, mowed once in late Summer (hay for the neighbor's horses), will compete with the weeds the rest of the time, and won't look too bad. My current candidate is a mix of a short growing rye grass and crimson clover.

Thanks for the suggestions.

Mike
 

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AKA Moses Lawnagan
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.....crimson clover.

Mike
Crimson and Clover, O-ver and O-ver......(repeat ad nauseum):biglaugh: :biglaugh:

Tommy James and the Shondells, 1969 (?)

Sorry, couldn't resist.

Yeah, I guess just fight the weeds until your wet season starts. When you sow, a blend of seed types will have a greater chance of success than a single variety.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Crimson and Clover, O-ver and O-ver......(repeat ad nauseum):biglaugh: :biglaugh:

Tommy James and the Shondells, 1969 (?)

Sorry, couldn't resist.
Oh Thanks, now I'll have that running around in my head for the next couple of hours. :00000060: Yep, I'm old enough to remember it clearly. (But not quite old enough to have forgotten it all)

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I guess I should have labeled the second picture In_progress.jpg. It's certainly not attractive now.

What is not visible in the "before" picture is the very bumpy and pitted surface that made mowing, even with a tractor, painful and slow.

My primary goal is to smooth it out.

Though I probably won't turn this into more lawn, I guess I'm looking for how to prep the surface as if I were going to do just that. What steps would you use to get from the "after" picture to lawn?

Sorry about the confusion.

Thanks,

Mike
 

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Yeah,couldn't see the ground,just the nice thick grass. Well what you did made the ground smooth,I woulda limed it,fertilized it,planted somekinda meadow mix with red clover,than ran over it all good with tractor or disk set at don't cut to much setting or maybe a drag,,but tractor tires mash it down pretty good,maybe mulched with straw spots that water might wash out,,
 

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Go to your local AG supply and get some pasture mix and get it planted. slkpk
 
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