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Author Topic: Problem docks!  (Read 397 times)

mintytwoshoes

  • Joined Feb 2012
Problem docks!
« on: July 15, 2019, 10:09:27 pm »
HelloThis year we seem to have far more docks on our land. What are your suggestions for getting rid. Do sheep eat docks. currently have two horses grazing but they don't eat the docks and are far too well fed too. Any suggestions on suitable weed killer would be appreciated. Field is just over 2 acres. How effective are different solutions and what did you find worked best.
Thanks
Voss Electric Fence

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: Problem docks!
« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2019, 12:20:27 am »
Regular topping.  Livestock will then eat some of the younger stems and leaves, so just keep topping so it doesn’t set seed.  You never fully eradicate it but it can be controlled.

Once you’ve really knocked it back, sheep will hold it back better than other species. And I think primitive breeds eat it better than commercials.

Weed killers only keep it at bay for a year or two too.

The old way was to “spud” the plants.  A tool like an apple corer stuck on the end of a walking stick.  As you check the stock, dig up the dock plants by the roots using the spudder.  Because docks are extremely deep rooted, they will, again, make it back in a year or two.

Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cow, beef cattle, pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

chrismahon

  • Joined Dec 2011
  • Gascony, France
Re: Problem docks!
« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2019, 10:48:38 am »
We've had a few docks in our two acres. Rather than use chemicals I followed advice and cut the root with a small sharpened spade about 6" down- killed the lot first time. These were very big and old docks that had been repeatedly topped for many years, but not grazed. The only ones now are those that seeded or that I missed. So as said, get them before they seed.

macgro7

  • Joined Feb 2016
Re: Problem docks!
« Reply #3 on: July 16, 2019, 01:28:07 pm »
We've had a few docks in our two acres. Rather than use chemicals I followed advice and cut the root with a small sharpened spade about 6" down- killed the lot first time. These were very big and old docks that had been repeatedly topped for many years, but not grazed. The only ones now are those that seeded or that I missed. So as said, get them before they seed.

They might still grow back I'm afraid.

Docks are actually quite amazing plants! They grow very deep roots, once they seed, the seeds can survive 60 years underground (ploughed up for example), and still sprout!
Not many people realise that they are actually edible - to humans as well as sheep Or goats!
You can cook them like spinach but don't eat too much too often as they are high in certain acid (for got the name but it's the same as in closely related sorrel) which prevents absorbsion of calcium and in people with existing problem can make kidney stones worse.
Growing loads of fruits and vegetables! Raising dairy goats, chickens, ducks, geese rabbits and a little boy on 1/2 acre in the middle of the city of Leicester, using permaculture methods.

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: Problem docks!
« Reply #4 on: July 16, 2019, 04:44:14 pm »
It’s oxalic acid, I think
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cow, beef cattle, pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

macgro7

  • Joined Feb 2016
Re: Problem docks!
« Reply #5 on: July 16, 2019, 05:07:51 pm »
Yes that's right!
Growing loads of fruits and vegetables! Raising dairy goats, chickens, ducks, geese rabbits and a little boy on 1/2 acre in the middle of the city of Leicester, using permaculture methods.

Scarlet.Dragon

  • Joined May 2015
  • Aberdeenshire
Re: Problem docks!
« Reply #6 on: July 16, 2019, 05:18:44 pm »
High in both oxalic acid and tannins as well as trace minerals due to the depth of their tap roots so not palatable to most grazers but goats and some native sheep breeds consider them to be the elixir of life.  My goats target them like kids in a sweetie shop and the only thing I've seen them attack more enthusiastically is rosebay willow herb and wild raspberries. 

Goats are great companion browsers for horses if you've room for a couple - they are browsers rather than grazers so need access to native species of trees (or branches that you've brought in for them) but will target long grass, "weeds" such as rosebay willow herb, dock, hogweed, thistles, nettles (but only in the autumn), wild rasps, vetch, etc).  They're also great, fun company and time wasters!

If you don't have time and space to keep them permanently, maybe take on a couple of young wethered kids allow them to do their work and then put them in the freezer?!
Excellence is the result of caring more than others think is wise, risking more than others think is safe, dreaming more than others think is practical and expecting more than others think is possible.

mintytwoshoes

  • Joined Feb 2012
Re: Problem docks!
« Reply #7 on: July 17, 2019, 03:06:44 pm »
Hello everyoneThank you so much for all the information. Certainly it will help. We will go out and tackle them - just so many more this year!Might even invest in a couple of goats - always wanted to keep some. But do they climb and get over fences? Also a slight problem is that we are intending to be downsizing and seling up!  Which is going to be really hard.Best wishes to all.
 

landroverroy

  • Joined Oct 2010
Re: Problem docks!
« Reply #8 on: July 17, 2019, 10:31:13 pm »
Might even invest in a couple of goats  But do they climb and get over fences?


 :roflanim: :roflanim: :roflanim: . Just a bit  :innocent:
Rules are made:
  for the guidance of wise men
  and the obedience of fools.

 

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