View Full Version : Rain = Mud = no grass in the spring?

Feb. 10, 2010, 08:10 AM
NC has been inundated from constant rainfall this year since about October (it's bordering on the absurd now-- it's never been this bad), the pastures are a muddy mess.

Is this going to totally destroy any chances for good grass in the spring/summer or does it bounce back? I'm at a boarding barn that does not do much in the way of pasture maintenence although the pastures are large and lack of grass has not been a problem in the past. Is there anything they *could* do? (short of letting them rest which won't be an option)

Feb. 10, 2010, 09:14 AM
You would be surprised to see how much grass shows up this spring. I pass a large paddock on a farm every day and right now it's frozen dirt ruts. Later on it will be mud, and by June, there are horses grazing on nice green grass. Horses are out on it every day, all winter. Granted, that's not their total ration come summer, but it does amaze me that the grass DOES come back year after year. My sacrifice area at home is down to dirt in most places, will be somewhat muddy in a month or so, but always ends up grassy by late spring.

Feb. 10, 2010, 09:25 AM
Ditto. I was shocked two years ago at the back pasture. We used it was "sacrifice" during the winter for 5 horses. Once we pulled them off, up came the green.

It does help that we scatter/throw hay every day. All those seeds germinate!

Feb. 10, 2010, 09:28 AM
we are east of raleigh and our pastures will spring back to life in spite of the mud. we did overseed two that are resting now with winter rye, and then in spring we will fertilize the others and probably pull horses off for a few weeks, but really don't have to.

Feb. 10, 2010, 09:44 AM
ok, thanks for the feedback! That sounds promising. Sometimes I feel like a farmer worrying about "the crops" :)

Feb. 10, 2010, 10:19 AM
I feel ya, Meshach. Absurd isn't even a strong enough word to describe how much rain the triangle has had since September. For a while there I thought I got beamed to the PNW and no one told me. :)

If I hear the word "drought" from the media this summer, I just. might. scream. :yes:

Feb. 10, 2010, 11:26 AM
Hahahah -- we certainly have had more than our share of rain. I wish it WOULD hold over so we don't experience drought conditions. Never seems to rain like crazy in oh, say, July when the streams are going dry and the development sprawl is sucking the reservoirs down and I am picking up dead aquatic life every day at work.....

Sparky Boy
Feb. 10, 2010, 11:41 AM
I feel your pain. I worry about my pastures too. Before all this hateful snow, we had a lot of mud, more than I've seen in past years. My husband keeps telling me I need to get them off those fields... Uh, where the hell would you like me to put them ???? I rotate in the summer months but they've been in one paddock this winter. My thinking is that why rotate now and have them tear up all the paddocks?

I really hope the grass shows up this year!!

Feb. 10, 2010, 11:52 AM
I have been worrying about mine to. The heavy rains washed most of my seeds away and now the pastures are so soggy! I hope I can get some good grass growing this spring.

Feb. 10, 2010, 08:46 PM
We're in North TX and the rain has been absurd here too. We haven't been really dry since last August. I am sick of it!

Anyway, the grass will come back! Don't worry....you'll be amazed at how a muddy pasture will sprout up in the spring. And if they can throw out some seed, then even better.

Meredith Clark
Feb. 10, 2010, 08:47 PM
It does help that we scatter/throw hay every day. All those seeds germinate!

I thought hay kills grass.. like how you can see rings where round bales were

Feb. 11, 2010, 02:59 AM
Yep, believe Texas is now out of the drought status. Got more standing water than pasture and horses are presently boarded to keep their feet from rotting off or slipping in the black clay and getting hurt.

More rain, snow and sleet coming tomorrow--sigh!

Feb. 11, 2010, 01:34 PM
We are on the coast of VA and have had record rainfalls this fall/winter also (now record snowfalls too!). I have two fields that we designated as sacrifice pastures once the monsoon started....the rest are staying closed until the ground is dry that way we will have good pastures right off the bat this spring.

One of our closed fields floods habitually every fall (we will be putting in drain tiles this summer) but it has always come back no matter how wet and muddy it was. I wouldn't worry about it too much.

Feb. 11, 2010, 05:47 PM
I thought hay kills grass.. like how you can see rings where round bales were

It might kill it there because the hay ring and tons of "waste" hay and pee and poop are sitting in the same spot forever. Hay "sprinkled" on the fields will seed it though, because some of the seeds come off the hay and go into the ground and then sprout in the spring.

Feb. 11, 2010, 05:49 PM
Every year I look at the pastures at the barn around this time and think that there is no way we will ever have grass again. Especially around the gate/water trough/heavily used areas.

Every year we have grass in the spring like clockwork. It's pretty amazing actually.

Feb. 11, 2010, 06:07 PM
I thought hay kills grass.. like how you can see rings where round bales were

We had round bales for the first time last year, at the end of the summer into late fall.

We put the bales on bad/eaten down/bare spots to begin with but still noticed rings. Now that the rains and time have done their magic, we can see fresh green grass in the rings -- more so than in neighboring bare areas!! We are very happy.

Our loft gets a lot of waste hay -- I'm going to push it down onto a tarp and bring it out to more bare spots!