State of the Farm

It finally happened — August acted like August. After a summer of below average temperatures, the farm got hot and dry. The result: weed pop. “Snow on the mountain”, a misnomer if there ever was one, and various other weeds made their comeback in a big way.

Understand that stockmen would like nothing but grass all year round, and at conventional farms, will spray weed killer until the sun doesn’t shine in the hope that grass will be encouraged. They can spend a lot of money and time in what seems a futile effort because all that happens is exposure of the grasses to direct sun and heat which only exacerbates the retardation of grass growth and nutrients. (Here I refer to what happens to native grasses, granting that some of the hybrids are able to grow in this weather. But our program is native in all of its varieties.)

So what do we do about this? Nothing. If we are in a dry part of the year, leave it alone in the belief that nature has its reasons. While we don’t presume to know all of those reasons, we know this: a weed-protected soil is much cooler than one without weed cover. Think of the difference you experience when you move from the blazing hot sun to the shade of a big oak tree. Now think of the weeds as the soil’s little forest. The shade allows the grass below to grow or at least survive. And cattle are very good at finding the hidden grass. The same shade also preserves moisture when the occasional shower comes.

So those are at least 2 reasons why we do not fear weeds. Let Mother Nature reign. She has a reason for everything she does.

JVF