Thursday 6 September 2012

More work for the scythe cutting rushes

After bracken, rushes are one of most vigorous, widespread and pernicious weeds of pasture here in the Highlands, they grow best on damp ground  that usually needs draining and lime. The rush grows from seed and develops a huge base of up to a square metre. Cattle will graze the young tops in Spring but sheep won't touch them. The rush clumps grow bigger until they finally coalesce until the grass is excluded.

The common rush Juncus conglomeratus
  This must be the reason why SGRPID pay us to cut the rushes under the "Land Management Options" Scheme that I have signed up for. It should increase the productivity of the grassland but might not be so good for snipe and woodcock.

Rushes out compete the grass and exclude it

The answer is more hard work with the scythe, clumps have to be cut flush with the ground even if they consist of a substantial mounds. Cut material can be raked up, dried and stacked for bedding or burnt when it's dry enough.

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