What if your pasture seed could feed your animals AND improve your soil? Seeding pastures with something like Kentucky Blue grass is great for horses, but really not so great for the soil. All it really does is hold soil in place.
I started using forageable cover crops a few seasons ago and I won’t go back. Rather than sow plain grass seed, I mix a few cover crops that meet the nutritional requirements of my animals while performing different functions like decompacting soil, improving tilth, fixing nitrogen, attract beneficial insects, suppressing weeds, etc. If the soil is healthy, the forage my animals eat will be too.
My favorite free resource is The Rodale Institute’s free Forageable Cover Crop chart. You can look up different cover crops suited to your climate. Be sure to cross reference that with what is appropriate grazing for your animal species. Note, what works for me will not work for you. Take into consideration your climate, sun, moisture, landscape, animals’ needs, etc. It might be a bit of research up front but I promise it’s worth the work. I’ll have lots more info on this and dividing pastures up for rotational grazing in my book, The Sustainable Homestead, out in just two weeks!
Rodale Institute Chart Here
The Sustainable Homestead
Angela is the farmer and content creator behind Axe & Root Homestead® LLC. This historic six-acre permaculture farm is home to two Clydesdale horses, ten honeybee hives, five sheep, two guardian dogs, barn cats and a flock of 40 geese and ducks. The farm produces maple syrup, fruit from a small orchard and loads of garden produce for consumption, preservation and donation to the local food pantry.
The Sustainable Homestead is available NOW!