• Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.

Announcement

Collapse

Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You’re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it—details of personal disputes are likely better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts that violate these rules. Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting, but administrators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts upon request.

Outright inflammatory, vulgar, harassing, malicious or otherwise inappropriate statements and criminal charges unsubstantiated by a reputable news source or legal documentation will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it’s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users’ profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses – Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it’s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who’s selling it, it doesn’t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions – Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services – Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products – While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements – Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be “bumped” excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues – Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators’ discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the “alert” button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your “Ignore” list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you’d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user’s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 1/26/16)
See more
See less

Horsekeeping on small acreage

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Horsekeeping on small acreage

    My husband and I have just purchased a 4 acre lot that we are building our house on. Coincidentally one of his friends owns the adjoining 15 acres. We are looking to purchase some of his land so that we can have the horses at home. We will probably end up with 8-10 acres. The property is currently wooded and we are looking into clearing the trees and establishing pasture. It will be at least a year or two before we move the horses home. With that said how do you all manage your farms with small acreage? FYI we live in Culpeper, Va and will have 2-4 horses on the property.

    What are things you wish you would have done differently, or wouldn't have changed, etc.

  • #2
    We have 4acres and 2 horses and manage well....I would not have any more than 2 horses, grass is precious out here and more than 2 would deplete our grazing areas. Right now, we do not have a sacrifice area but will be fencing one in next, it will be about 1.5 acres plus the barn/runs and will allow me to keep them off of our grass during the growing season, so they will not overgraze. during our rainy season(july, august) I use very little hay, there is plenty of grass to sustain them- they chose to eat the grass and not the food in their feeders. I Like the 4 acres, it is enough for the horses to run and be silly if they want, I have a nice size area to ride in(unfenced) and it is not too big to where we are spending every waking minute with up-keep. our home was already built when we purchased, but I am thankful that the house was built in the front corner of the property, which has given us maximum horsey areas....I see homes where they have built in the middle of the 4 acres and it does not seem to work out as well space wise for horses, so you will want to carefully consider where you are putting you home, and where your barn/turnout areas will be in relation to the house....if I had more then two horses say three or four I would want at least 8 acres, broken into various pastures, so I could rotate pastures, separate horses if need be and have enough room to ride.

    Comment


    • #3
      Allow a year for the pastures to get established. That season will also let you see how it drains. Depending on what you end up with, figure out your manure management plan before getting them home. I would have dug out around the sheds, round bale feeder and gates and put in gravel and stone dust prior to dealing with mud in those area
      Epona Farm
      Irish Draughts and Irish Draught Sport horses

      Join us on Facebook

      Comment


      • #4
        The thread title reminded me of a book I saw a long time ago.

        http://www.amazon.com/Horsekeeping-S.../dp/158017535X

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by PiaffePlease View Post
          The thread title reminded me of a book I saw a long time ago.

          http://www.amazon.com/Horsekeeping-S.../dp/158017535X

          LOL, I thought that's what the thread was about!

          I think in Western Horseman Magazine I saw a picture series about her barn...NEAT is all I can say!
          Originally posted by BigMama1
          Facts don't have versions. If they do, they are opinions
          GNU Terry Prachett

          Comment


          • #6
            My friend purchased some property with a house on it, about 15 acres all wooded. They cleared some of it, but I don't think they allowed enough time for the grass to get established as she does not have good pastures. You may need several years after having cleared the property to get some decent grass. I would probably make a few smaller sacrifice areas to allow resting of developing pastures so you end up with decent grass. Good luck!

            Comment


            • #7
              There is a good book by that name. You may want to look at it... it has lots of good ideas.

              The reality is that if you don't have enough acres of pasture, it's not the end of the world. You just budget to buy hay more months out of the year. As long as they get a safe area for enough turn-out, free of any toxic trees/plants, they'll be fine as you slowly clear land.

              As someone who bought a wooded lot myself, I will warn you that converting forest to good horse pasture is much more expensive and time consuming than you think. I had a logging company come in and buy the hardwood timber. They leave behind the tops, which I let friends cut up for firewood. You still have to deal with stumps and keeping brush/weed growth under control until area is ready for regular mowing. Expect to put money into soil tests, and if your area is like mine, expect to do multiple lime treatments to fix the acid pH of forest soil.

              If I was to do it all over again, I would never buy a lot with so much woods. It might cost a little more to get something cleared, but it's so much less headache. In a perfect world, I'd also would love to have it fenced when I buy it, too.
              Veterinarians for Equine Welfare

              Comment


              • #8
                The book is okay, I use it for reference often, but I didn't find any new information in it.

                Exactly what Phil said, plus you can use pigs to help clear the stumps. You're looking at a lot of wasted space and ticks by turning your horses out in a wooded area.

                How we did it? \/
                Last edited by Nes; Sep. 1, 2011, 11:34 AM. Reason: you could use bigs pigs I guess... typo
                "For some people it's not enough to just be a horse's bum, you have to be sea biscuit's bum" -anon.
                Nes' Farm Blog ~ DesigNes.ca
                Need You Now Equine

                Comment


                • #9
                  I don't get it--what's this??: V
                  DIY Journey of Remodeling the Farmette: http://weownblackacre.blogspot.com/

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    And arrow downward

                    baby-on-lap fail
                    "For some people it's not enough to just be a horse's bum, you have to be sea biscuit's bum" -anon.
                    Nes' Farm Blog ~ DesigNes.ca
                    Need You Now Equine

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      The first step is to call your county Soil Conservation District to find out what type of soil you have. In this part of the world, the ground is so expensive that if it's got trees on it, 99% of the time, it's not good for growing anything, but wetland vegetation or pine trees. So, check that you have soil that can support pasture species and livestock.

                      I work with folks such as yourself, who've bought land in our county wanting to bring horses to the farm, and it's so disheartening to have to tell them it's too darn wet to grow any grass, let alone put a horse in there.
                      Alison Howard
                      Homestead Farms, Maryland www.freshorganicvegetables.com

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Figure out where you would like the house's location to be, where the septic field and lines would be sited, and where the main electric and water lines will run on the property. Then figure out where you would like to put a barn. The bloody power, water and septic configuration on our property has hamstrung us on where we can place certain buildings.

                        Slope and elevation are everything and may dictate where you can affordably put buildings on the property.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Personally, I don't think you should clear-cut in order to build more housing in an age where the US is increasingly insisting that 'other countries' should cease deforestation on the grounds of increasing CO2 build up, global warm-up, climate change etc.

                          Or you could just say "f&ck you, I don't give a cr@p" and build ever more housing on forested land.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Just make sure and always have atleast 1 pasture open, so no overgrazing occurs!
                            "The best pace is a suicide pace, and today looks like a good day to die!"
                            ----> Pre

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Could you put your home in the forested area, possibly clear an acre or two for barn/arena/sacrifice, and use the current 4 acres for pasture? Not sure what kind of riding you do, but then you could keep the remaining for trails. It would help if you're not sure about the type of pasture you'll get after cutting down the forest; it will keep most of the trees and still allow for your home and barn.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by KateWooten View Post
                                Personally, I don't think you should clear-cut in order to build more housing in an age where the US is increasingly insisting that 'other countries' should cease deforestation...
                                I can appreciate the sentiment, but last I checked grass was a plant too...Not exactly putting up a paved parking lot .

                                Horses just aren't carbon neutral period.
                                "For some people it's not enough to just be a horse's bum, you have to be sea biscuit's bum" -anon.
                                Nes' Farm Blog ~ DesigNes.ca
                                Need You Now Equine

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  I have 2 words for you:

                                  Perimeter Fencing.

                                  I bought a 5ac farmette, house was already there with about 1ac of lawn & the rest leased bean/corn fields.
                                  In hindsight, I wish I'd fenced off as much as possible for pastures and left the house with minimal mowable lawn space.
                                  I'd be happy to have as little as 1/4ac for the house/lawn.

                                  Since you are putting the house in you will need to check local ordinances as well as determine the legal/practical layout for your well & septic before planning where the barn & pastures will go.

                                  If you are a patient soul like me, pastures will eventually get established.
                                  I had my small - 1/2ac - pasture drill-seeded the first year but then did not keep horses off after grass came up.
                                  The larger - 2ac - I hand-seeded with a walk-behind spreader.
                                  This is Year 7 for me & finally I have enough grass so I am feeding nearly zero hay to 1 horse & 1 pony while there's grass for them.
                                  *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
                                  Steppin' Out 1988-2004
                                  Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
                                  Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by philosoraptor View Post
                                    As someone who bought a wooded lot myself, I will warn you that converting forest to good horse pasture is much more expensive and time consuming than you think. I had a logging company come in and buy the hardwood timber. They leave behind the tops, which I let friends cut up for firewood. You still have to deal with stumps and keeping brush/weed growth under control until area is ready for regular mowing. Expect to put money into soil tests, and if your area is like mine, expect to do multiple lime treatments to fix the acid pH of forest soil.

                                    If I was to do it all over again, I would never buy a lot with so much woods. It might cost a little more to get something cleared, but it's so much less headache. In a perfect world, I'd also would love to have it fenced when I buy it, too.
                                    If you turn wood land into pasture expect to have holes appear for years and years and years, too. Forty two years after clearing we're STILL having holes to fill up with rocks. I've just about run out of rocks and we had a lot!
                                    You know why cowboys don't like Appaloosas?" - Answer: Because to train a horse, you have to be smarter than it is.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Univ of MD has a good pasture utilization study program and holds frequent seminars (free I believe)- I would get with them
                                      Appy Trails,
                                      Kathy, Cadet & CCS Silinde
                                      member VADANoVA www.vadanova.org

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Before you do anything at all, check, check and recheck your local zoning and livestock ordinances. Most towns now require a manure removal plan. Others will have space/head limitations.
                                        Be very sure before you spend a nickle on the place that you can do what you want.
                                        Then develop a manure removal/management plan. So many people ignore it and then it ends up being a nightmare. Your adult, full size horse poops on average, 18 times a day and produces a square yard of waste per week.

                                        Comment

                                        Working...
                                        X