Smallholders Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: 'Herbal ley'  (Read 2971 times)

wildandwooly

  • Joined Feb 2021
'Herbal ley'
« on: April 14, 2021, 12:12:59 am »
Has anyone added chicory or clover or any other herbal plants to their pasture/meadow? Or added anything like yellow rattle? If so how did you go about it?

Backinwellies

  • Global Moderator
  • Joined Sep 2012
  • Llandeilo Carmarthenshire
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Re: 'Herbal ley'
« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2021, 06:36:31 am »
dont add yellow rattle if you still want grass in your ley .... it completes it out..... is used to develop a wildflower meadow where you want to reduce the grass. 

Linda

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landroverroy

  • Joined Oct 2010
Re: 'Herbal ley'
« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2021, 10:43:35 am »
Yes. I always add clover to the mix - usually just white, not red. Its gives variation to the pasture/meadow and provides more nutrients then grass alone as well as adding nitrogen to the soil. I've also used chicory. It is a natural wormer and well liked but I've never got it to last more than 2 years.


To me, the best grass fields should contain a variety of plants. How would you like to eat just the same grass all day? Also, the sweet smell of meadow grass which sheep prefer to eat is due to the variety of plants in it. 
Rules are made:
  for the guidance of wise men
  and the obedience of fools.

wildandwooly

  • Joined Feb 2021
Re: 'Herbal ley'
« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2021, 10:27:24 pm »
Trying to encourage as much variety as possible so yes agree landroverroy  :)  It was a traditional meadow which is SSSi but was very very neglected when we bought it. It's in poor condition sadly. I'm trying to restore it and restore the variety it once had. Because it's a SSSi we have to have a late cut hay wise here although mine hadn't been cut for @9 years!! You can prob imagine what it looks like  ::) The meadow on the opposite hillside was part of a project to restore or improve the meadows here which are 40% of the UKs traditional meadows but sadly that finished a few years ago before we moved here. Bad timing!
Yellow rattle has been suggested SD and someone has given me the name of a company who can provide it  :thumbsup:
Is there a reason why you use white clover over red landroverroy? I've seen red clover in a few small places in the field but not much. Not sure about white I must look closer but it's not very obvious if it is. Excuse my ignorance if white clover is better! I have no idea :D
I'm thinking of adding the chicory as as you say it has been shown to be a natural wormer which is why I'm thinking of using it. I don't know anyone else here who has added it....yet!

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: 'Herbal ley'
« Reply #4 on: April 14, 2021, 11:16:05 pm »
A few years down the line your meadow is going to be so beautiful. 


Where I grew up in Norfolk, there was chicory growing in some of our fields until the pigs were put there and destroyed it.  Chicory flowers are just the most perfect sky blue.  We also used to have scarlet pimpernel in the grain fields, near the gates where it was a bit poached by vehicles - such a tiny but perfect flower. I've never seen it growing wild since then.


We were recommended not to use red clover up here because it's not so hardy as white I think.  The flowers of red clover are bigger than those of white, which perhaps attracts a different type of native bee, although I don't know. A slight drawback of adding clover for a flower meadow is that it will be adding nitrogen to the soil, when for many wild flowers you need nitrogen-poor soil.   Have you approached one of the seed companies that do organic herbal ley seeds?  They will give you good advice on when and how to sow it in your specific area.  They will also make you a mix tailored to your specific needs.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2021, 11:18:57 pm by Fleecewife »
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
    • Trelay Cohousing Community
Re: 'Herbal ley'
« Reply #5 on: April 15, 2021, 08:50:09 am »
Re: red clover, it can have an oestrogenic effect so can do things like cause mammary development in ewes who aren't pregnant (I have seen this) and I have heard it said that it can have a contraceptive effect - so don't tup on red-clover-rich pasture!  lol.

I think maybe white clover doesn't have the same effect on nutrient levels either.  Generally if I see red clover, it's in a rich, lush sward, whereas white clover seems to indicate a poorer pasture.  But that's an observation, I haven't read up on it.
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 cows (rearing their own calves for beef), pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

wildandwooly

  • Joined Feb 2021
Re: 'Herbal ley'
« Reply #6 on: April 15, 2021, 03:29:55 pm »
Thank you Sally I'll keep that in mind  ;D
And thanks SD, I'm in the North of England but I will look up your suggestions. Thanks a lot for the links  :thumbsup:

macgro7

  • Joined Feb 2016
  • Leicester
Re: 'Herbal ley'
« Reply #7 on: April 16, 2021, 08:14:51 am »
A few years down the line your meadow is going to be so beautiful. 


Where I grew up in Norfolk, there was chicory growing in some of our fields until the pigs were put there and destroyed it.  Chicory flowers are just the most perfect sky blue.  We also used to have scarlet pimpernel in the grain fields, near the gates where it was a bit poached by vehicles - such a tiny but perfect flower. I've never seen it growing wild since then.
We have scarlet pimpernel growing in gaps in pavement just outside our house!
Growing loads of fruits and vegetables! Raising dairy goats, chickens, ducks, rabbits on 1/2 acre in the middle of the city of Leicester, using permaculture methods.

wildandwooly

  • Joined Feb 2021
Re: 'Herbal ley'
« Reply #8 on: April 16, 2021, 12:13:58 pm »
Don't be tempted to eat it m7 it's toxic and at the very least might give you gastroenteritis (I'm sure you hadn't thought of doing that  ;D)
It's also toxic to animals so not something you'd want in your pasture!  :cow: :horse: :sheep:  :goat: :yuck:  But very pretty  :)
Think it might be loosely related to Primroses but I may well be wrong on that :D

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: 'Herbal ley'
« Reply #9 on: April 16, 2021, 12:44:22 pm »
Ooh I didn't know it was toxic  :o   Not that I ever put any in my mouth - far too tiny and pretty for that.  Lovely you have some Macgro
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

wildandwooly

  • Joined Feb 2021
Re: 'Herbal ley'
« Reply #10 on: April 16, 2021, 10:43:19 pm »
Scarlet Dragon thank you very much for all the brilliant links. Really helpful  :)  :bouquet:

 

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