Grazing & Mechanical Management

Day 5 – Grazing and Mechanical Techniques for Weed Management

Grazing can be a powerful tool for managing weeds, especially in areas where herbicides can’t be used. Different grazing animals have different grazing styles and preferences, and some weeds are ignored by grazing animals and compete for water and nutrients with preferred forage species. When grazing treatments are combined with other control techniques like herbicides or biocontrol, it forms a powerful and potent cocktail that can reduce severe infestations and eliminate small infestations.

Mechanical weed control is a physical method that prevents unwanted plant growth by removing, injuring, or killing weeds. It’s the oldest and most common weed control method in the world. Mechanical weed control methods use physical implements to remove, injure, or kill weeds, or make growing conditions unfavorable. These methods include:

  • Tilling: Uses a tractor to slice, chop, or uproot small weeds
  • Cultivation: Uses a tractor to undercut weeds between crop rows
  • Mowing: Uses a tractor to mow weeds
  • Hand hoeing: Uses a hand hoe to remove weeds
  • Hand removal: Uses hands to remove weeds
  • Flame weeding: Uses propane-fueled weeders to damage weed foliage with intense heat

 

Fact Sheets
MSU Extension advises caution for livestock feeding or grazing weeds during drought:
https://www.montana.edu/news/21345/msu-extension-advises-caution-for-livestock-feeding-or-grazing-weeds-during-drought
Mowing to Manage Noxious Weeds: https://www.montana.edu/extension/invasiveplants/documents/publications/extension_publications/mowing%20to%20manage%20noxious%20weeds_MT200104AG.pdf
Canada thistle and grazing: https://www.webpages.uidaho.edu/rx-grazing/Forbs/Canada_Thistle.htm
Common buckthorn: https://www.montana.edu/extension/invasiveplants/documents/publications/extension_publications/Common_buckthorn_mt201708AG.pdf
The Effect of Laser Treatment as a Weed Control Method:
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S1537511006002984#:~:text=A%20laser%20beam%20directed%20towards,stop%20or%20delay%20the%20growth

 

Videos & podcasts
Adaptive Grazing 101: What You Should Do About “Weeds”:
https://youtu.be/9HQTqYclPqU?si=s3R94dTS2soVgaXm
From Weeds to Productive Pasture – Naturally:
https://youtu.be/7cgth70O4Io?si=escYEHF84IhGcmh5
Home Garden Course – Cultivation and Weeds | Starting from Zero Weeds:
https://youtu.be/djvaQdmYJ88?si=ZPkraLs6Mr8L3ki8
How Mowing Height Prevents Weeds – Turf Tips with Dr. Brad:
https://youtu.be/X2grzUsyANE?si=ITsLXLQsf2GpaQkA
Burn those weeds away with flame weeding:
https://youtu.be/lk5QYlo4l6s?si=kLD8c6JFxFDddjiW
Buckthorn Removal: Tools and Techniques:
https://youtu.be/upMwEanKxsE?si=uHgBkrO2vFVuiIFi
Podcast: War Against Weeds, Weed Management, Grazing Management, Natives vs. Introduced:
https://ksubci.org/2021/04/02/war-against-weeds-weed-management-grazing-management-natives-vs-introduced/
Podcast: Diversify Your Toolbox to Manage Resistant Weeds in No-Till:
https://www.no-tillfarmer.com/articles/12919-podcast-diversify-your-toolbox-to-manage-resistant-weeds-in-no-till

 

Activities & Helpful Websites
Montana State University Extension Publications: https://www.montana.edu/extension/invasiveplants/extension_publications.html
Montana Department of Agriculture Noxious Weeds: https://agr.mt.gov/Noxious-Weeds
Montana Weed Control Association: www.mtweed.org
MSU Noxious Weed Management Certification: https://www.montana.edu/extension/invasiveplants/extension/workshops/index.html
MSU 406 Grazing Academy:
https://animalrange.montana.edu/grazingacademy.html#:~:text=June%2011%20%2D13%2C%202024%20in,is%20open%20until%20April%2026.
2024 Montana Range Days: https://www.montanarangedays.org/
2024 Montana Range Tour: https://macdnet.org/wp-content/uploads/2024/03/MRT_2024_RegistrationOpen.pdf

 

Other Articles & Information
MOWING: A CASUALLY THOUGHT OF INTEGRATED WEED MANAGEMENT TOOL:
https://blog.umd.edu/agronomynews/2022/03/23/mowing-a-casually-thought-of-integrated-weed-management-tool/
Tillage, Cultivation, and Mowing: https://growiwm.org/mechanical-weed-control/
The Nature Conservancy Weed Handbook regarding grazing: https://www.invasive.org/gist/products/handbook/04.Grazing.pdf
Multispecies grazing and leafy spurge: https://extension.unl.edu/statewide/lincolnmcpherson/grazingmanual-1.pdf
Laser “death ray” kills weeds 80x faster than humans: https://youtu.be/72ol-5SOGqY?si=48w_62x25SADe-Jh

 

As MNWAW is declared statewide, help us create a united front in the fight against noxious weeds in Montana, educate those around us, and celebrate the wins. Don’t forget to watch our gun raffle fundraiser LIVE on our Facebook page at 12pm.

Follow along, share, and engage with us!!

 

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