Monday, 30 June 2014
I'm all for trying to maximize the amount of feed I can give to our livestock that is grown locally and, very importantly, is free. The hedges on our allotment site are over 100 years old (I have seen them marked on on late Victoria maps of our village) and are still growing strongly despite their age. Gradually I am chopping back some of the bigger, high branches so that the height of the hedges can be brought down to about 2.5 - 3 metres. I take a few branches a day from around the site and then give them to the goats who browse on them. Many of the other allotment holders here also pass on their hedge cuttings and branches they have chopped back. The goats particularly like hawthorn (of which we have a huge quantity), ash, elder, ivy and bramble.
So the goats get fed, the hedges are better managed and I eventually have lots of sticks that can be chopped up to be burnt when I eventually get the Victorian out-building solid fuel heater I bought last year into use.