In the past, clearing a piece of land that was overgrown with brush usually involved a bulldozer and some burn piles, but today there's another alternative.
It's a brush mulching machine, and we have more in this week's From The Ground Up
“The dozer is hard on the ground. You had the brush piles to deal with, and then if you were hiring somebody to do it, after they left, then you ‘d have to pay them to come back and bury what’s left. With the brush machine, it’s mulch.”
Shane Swinson grows hay and raises cattle in Grimes County. He also uses a mulching machine to clear fence lines, create walking trails, and restore pasture land.
“Within 60 days of it being done, you’ve got grass coming up. You can go in and fertilize. With the mulch there, you can go in sling out some Bermuda seed, and it’s gonna hold that seed in place and not let it wash away with the mulch on the ground, and in just a little while you’ve got Bermuda going.”
Swinson says it takes three years to create a hay meadow.
“We went in and brush mulched it, let it be natural grass for about a year, then went in and started plowing it, disked it, chiseled it, came in and sprigged it, then let it go that year with some herbicides to control the weeds and just let it lay. From there, the following year, we cut it, more herbicides to control target grasses.”
It turns out that mulching brush is a little cheaper than using a dozer.
“On the economic side, the brush mulcher, it’s a turn-key job. When you pull in you do your job, you pull out, you’re done.”
I’m Shel Winkley, looking at Brazos Valley agriculture, From The Ground Up.