G-UPP - Feed your paddock right .... and you feed your horse right
IS YOUR PADDOCK UNDER STRESS THIS WINTER?
Then start thinking ahead and PREVENT them from becoming 'horse sick' for the spring.....
This winter has been extremely harsh on paddocks. Most are under water to some extent and those of us with winter turnout have been forced to ‘sacrifice’ more and more to preserve some grass. This spring will therefore probably see many paddocks with large ‘poached’ areas in need of re-seeding and treatment.
Gate openings and troughs are particularly busy areas and can get extremely damaged. Putting hardcore down in the gate opening is okay but don’t use it too far in or you’ll just move the problem further in to the field. Consider putting down mats that grass can grow through instead – these help spread the weight of the horse and are also aesthetically pleasing.
Setting land drains, whilst expensive, will pay dividends in the long run and also keeping your ditches in good order will help alleviate the problem.
Once spring is with us and the rain has gone then the real problem will begin with the muddy areas turning rock hard!
Starting this spring
1. Harrow – ideally spring and again in the autumn. This removes all the dead thatch and aerates the soil, allowing air and light to reach the plants.
2 .Re-seed all poached areas – use a special ‘horse paddock’ mix. This will contain hardier fescues rather than just ryes.
3. Apply fertilizer in the form of G-UPP. G-UPP has been specially formulated to work naturally with the plant increasing rooting and tillering thus creating a stronger, thicker sward that helps compete with weeds and helps combat stress conditions.
4. Give the paddock time to re-generate before turning the horses back out.
5. Once the horses are in turn out try and rotate the grazing between paddocks, re-applying G-UPP to the paddock being rested.
6. Finally, don’t forget to poo pick regularly!
If the above points are followed then a healthy sward will be achieved. If ignored, then the paddock will eventually become ‘horse sick’ and a costly ploughing and re-seeding will be needed.