Spring Clean your Paddocks with our equestrian services
Before the season kicks off, it is essential to ensure that your paddocks are in tip-top condition. It would be best if you implemented a well-regimented plan for all-year-round maintenance. If you’ve never had your paddocks maintained before, then this list of top tips will help get you started.
How to achieve great results with your horse paddock plan
Whether you are a professional or an enthusiastic rider, your horse and pony play a significant role in your life. All year-round, you can find yourself checking on their general health to ensure they have the best life possible, taking care of them when they are unwell or generally just ensuring that they stay happy. You might own land, or you may be lucky enough to be allowed to keep your animals in a livery yard so that you can ride every day.
It is vital to ensure that your grass is in top condition to allow your horses to graze naturally for as long as possible. Not only does this provide a varied diet for your horse, but it also reduces their other feed and allows them to gain nutrients right from your paddock.
Harrowing in early spring (March and April) will support new growth in your paddock and provide access to light and oxygen. Weeding and seeding at this time will also reduce the likelihood of having to complete this throughout the year, as you will already have a head start.
Having an Agricultural Contractor to undertake this service for you can give you the freedom to ensure that your paddocks and horses are well looked after. A cost-effective contractor like Hillview Farm with years of experience and a lot of knowledge will give you peace of mind that all paddock care is undertaken correctly and to a high standard. You can also gain a lot of knowledge and advice from a contractor, which can be invaluable for all year round maintenance.
Top tips for all year round maintenance
Often, work in a paddock can feel like it is never over, and to achieve optimal results, this is generally the case. There is always something to be done in or around the paddock, and getting timings right can make for a much better year for you and your horses.
Fencing and re-pointing fence lines is often a task left for wintertime when your horses are out in open spaces for a shorter time (if at all). Ensuring your fence lines are stable, intact and repaired may be the difference between keeping and losing your horse. Getting those fences repaired and in excellent condition will give you confidence when your horse is spending more time in the fields during the summer months.
When rotating your paddock, often grass can be repaired whilst being rested from grazing. A lot of damage can be reversed by simply giving the grass time to relax and regrow. During the early spring, re-seeding is often a top priority to ensure it is ready for your horse to spend time during the summer months.
Depending on weather conditions, especially during the winter months, your fields and paddocks may have been damaged by heavy winds, rain and frost. Winter damage must be reversed as soon as possible to ensure nutrient balance in the soil and grass can be maintained and improved upon before the summer months set in.
Similar to equestrian services:
Paddock Rotation for the perfect regrowth
Even the most well-maintained paddocks can suffer from neglect during the winter, so it is important to remember there are still a few essential jobs that involve attention. Even if you have been busy with indoor work – mucking out, bedding and feeding – don’t forget about your paddock. The last thing you want is to have your horse pull up lame in the spring because he or she has got stuck somewhere when trying to find grass that is too long. Grazing can reduce potassium levels in horses, which means looking out for the signs of grass tetany – this can be fatal if not treated quickly.
Poor paddocks can result in poor results from your horses, and this is something all professional horse owners will want to avoid. Implementing a rotation plan will help ensure your horse is not overgrazing in one place but has access to various areas at different times. This will provide them with nutrient-rich good quality grass that will provide them with protein and energy. To rotate your paddock effectively, once a horse has moved to another part of the paddock, the area they have vacated must be protected for regrowth to happen. This area will generally be left for between 2-3 weeks to ensure maximum regrowth.
Managing Grass, Weeds and Soil in your field
Poisonous Weeds can be hazardous for your horse, and it is therefore imperative that they are removed and stopped from returning at first sight. Failure to remove poisonous weeds can result in costly vet bills and potential long term damage to your horses.
Having good quality grass rich with nutrients and devoid of weeds, dead grass, and muck will provide your horses with a varied diet for as long as possible during the year. The ideal grass growth height for horses to be able to graze is 5cm, and fields frequently tended to, including mucking away weeding, will produce a much higher quality of grass than those left to fend for themselves.
Quality Equestrian services with Hillview Farm
With 40 years of experience in farming and Equestrian facilities, it’s no wonder so many farms in the local Buckinghamshire area have chosen to put their trust in Hillview Farm. When it comes to expert advice and equestrian services, Hillview Farm has the team and the know-how to ensure your paddocks are in brilliant condition for you and your horses all year round. From muck away services, fencing and paddock maintenance support, the team at Hillview farm can support all your equestrian needs and management of your paddocks. If you would like advice, support and guidance on your Paddock Maintenance Services, give Hillview Farm a call today. Hillview Farm is the only choice for trusted, friendly advice resulting in high-quality services fit for your horse.