I have a great view from my back porch.
But I have a slope just past the pool that is a grown up mess.
A few trees were removed years ago to give the pool more sun which has allowed wild blackberries and poison ivy to thrive. It was so grown up, the cows could not/would not even attempt to graze this area.
I really wanted to clean it up, but since I am terribly allergic to poison ivy, I decided to hire this out.
Finding someone to do this was the problem. Not many people can/will work with poison ivy and thorny blackberries.
Spraying was not an option. I put a lot of time, money, and effort in keeping my bees away from chemicals and I wasn’t going to jeopardize their well-being.
The answer came while I was watching our local news one evening. They were highlighting a special group of workers that would clear out brush. They were touted to work quickly and efficiently. They would show up early and stay late. The more poison ivy and brush you had, the more enthusiastic they worked.
Intrigued, I called and scheduled them to work on my horrible slope. The perimeters of the area were defined as I anxiously awaited their arrival. On the appointed day, twelve workers arrived in two minivans. Twelve! Two minivans!
Let me introduce you to these special workers.
They are collectively known as Greedy Goats of NWA.
As soon as they arrived, they did not hesitate to start working.
They were kept in the perimeter with electric fencing.
The owners stayed with the goats every day to make sure there were no problems. If any of you have been around goats, you know they can get into trouble quickly. They are notorious for escaping, oftentimes climbing a tree to do so.
Daisy tried to help
but quickly tired.
At the end of the day, the goats seemed to know it was time to leave and began to head toward the minivans.
The Greedy Goats Group stayed several days and worked nonstop. They don’t eat cedars so we will cut those down when it gets cooler. Surprisingly, they don’t eat grass either, just weeds. Now the cows can come in and finish it down. Win, win.
Here are some before and after pics
I am very satisfied I found an alternative way to get rid of invasive weeds without spraying. There are several rent-a-ruminant programs throughout the US, so you might check in your area to explore this “green” way of weed control.