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Author Topic: Willow for sheep  (Read 4785 times)

JMB

  • Joined Apr 2011
Willow for sheep
« on: March 31, 2012, 03:07:40 pm »
Hello.
While I'm waiting for our first lambs, I'm thinking about planting and things.
Am I to late to plant willow?
Is it just a filler or does anyone use it as winter feed?
And is there a particular type they like?
Thank you xxx

Bramblecot

  • Joined Jul 2008
Re: Willow for sheep
« Reply #1 on: March 31, 2012, 03:28:25 pm »
My lot all adore willow.  They graze the hedges to head height and I continuously break off the taller branches and let them feed from them.  Even when the leaves have gone in winter they nibble the stems and it gives the Shetlands something to do do  (rather than escaping).  Be careful if you plant the very strong growing varieties as it can become dominant in the hedges and grows faster than hawthorn, hazel etc.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: Willow for sheep
« Reply #2 on: March 31, 2012, 03:51:45 pm »
No you're not too late.

My primitives love willow too.  Look on my website and you'll see how quickly they will polish off big branches.  There are valuable vitamins and minerals under the bark which help to keep the sheep healthy in winter. If you are using it as winter feed you will need the stronger growing ones, kept in their own coppice for regular harvesting.  I'm not sure how much other sheep types like it.
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Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

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suziequeue

  • Joined Feb 2010
  • Llanidloes; Powys
Re: Willow for sheep
« Reply #3 on: March 31, 2012, 04:22:32 pm »
Cool

Having just planted 150 willow - mainly for baskets and hurdles, I shall surely be sparing a bit for the sheep.

I had never associated sheep with eating willow.

Great  :D :D
We do the best we can with the information we have

When we know better we do better

in the hills

  • Joined Feb 2012
Re: Willow for sheep
« Reply #4 on: March 31, 2012, 05:29:34 pm »
My Soay love willow. Never thought about growing some specifically for them. What a good idea.

Thanks for that JMB.

Remy

  • Joined Dec 2011
Re: Willow for sheep
« Reply #5 on: March 31, 2012, 07:44:17 pm »
There must be something in willow that makes it attractive to horses too, mine used to be in a field that had a huge willow tree, and they used to eat all the leaves and branches up to head height!  I think willow contains substances that are medicinal but I can't remember what they are ...
1 horse, 2 ponies, 4 dogs, 2 Kune Kunes, a variety of sheep

suziequeue

  • Joined Feb 2010
  • Llanidloes; Powys
Re: Willow for sheep
« Reply #6 on: March 31, 2012, 08:03:22 pm »
Quinine and aspirin

We do the best we can with the information we have

When we know better we do better

landroverroy

  • Joined Oct 2010
Re: Willow for sheep
« Reply #7 on: March 31, 2012, 08:50:59 pm »
 That's handy then for those suffering from malaria, or, more likely, painful feet or headache. ;D
Rules are made:
  for the guidance of wise men
  and the obedience of fools.

 

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