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MJBee 

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Has anyone got a method of getting rid of bracken that does not involve a lot of machinery and/or physical graft?
I have 4 acres of woodland that is choked with the bl**dy stuff and it just acts as a climbing frame for the brambles which compounds the problem.
:cheers2: Mike
 

jimbeekeeper 

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Some kind of animal? Pigs spring to mind! Or more possibley in your location Boar.
 
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I'll second the pigs. You could always spread a rumour locally there are truffles in the wood and then perhaps people will bring their own pigs!

Even better buy some pigs yourself and eat them later. I would have thought 4 acres would keep them munching for a few months but you would probably have to supplement the feed. And of course make the wood pig-proof to stop them escaping and being eaten by other people.

If you do a bit of Googling you can get reports like this: http://www.islayinfo.com/islay-dunlossit-estate-pigs.html

There are chemical treatments but it would be expensive, non-green and take a lot of effort just reaching them if the wood is choked.
 
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MJBee 

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Thanks both,
In another life I was "treed" by a boar that was running with some sows in an area of scrub the farmer was clearing. I was putting some feed in their trough when it came out of the scrub at full gallop - no chance of reaching the electric fence so up a tree I went - and stayed until someone came looking for me:):)
I have wild boar and deer but the bracken still wins. Containment would be the main problem but defining boundaries is another as my wood is part of a much bigger area of woodland - some managed but most untouched since the big storm of 1999.
The only guy I know that hunts for truffles uses a DOG:svengo:
Guess I'll just have to continue with sickle and scythe:(
:cheers2: Mike
 

VEG 

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plumber 

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crushing or cutting twice or more a year, bit labour intesive
 

rowbow 

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tow a roller around the area this will crush the new shoots, do this two or three times a year, it will burn its self out.
John
 

susbees 

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Acres of the stuff here too...but on a hillside with tonnes of gorse on the other side. The horse logger would be fun, but probably too steep. Helispraying...only a few grand. Brushcutter at that angle...exhausting and stony too.

See, you've got it easy ;)!
 

MJBee 

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I have just acquired a tractor (an ancient 2 cylinder air cooled Deutz) and persuaded the vendor to include a link box AND a pto driven 4' brush cutter:coolgleamA:

Bracken you're gonna die!!
 

victor meldrew 

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Has anyone got a method of getting rid of bracken that does not involve a lot of machinery and/or physical graft?
I have 4 acres of woodland that is choked with the bl**dy stuff and it just acts as a climbing frame for the brambles which compounds the problem.
:cheers2: Mike
Balsam squeezes out bracken in the fullness of time :blush5:

John Wilkinson
 

greatbritishhoney 

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If you are using pigs just be careful how long you leave them on the bracken - it's poisonous to them in large doses.
 

psafloyd 

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I'd spray. Knock 7 bells out of it, much easier to then keep on top of the remains. The link below is a trade supplier, farm shops are probably the best bet if you're not licenced.


http://www.pitchcare.com/shop/professional-selective-weed-killers-for-bracken/index.html?gclid=CIWHnZnzuaUCFYVO4QodUhzUBA
That will leave a residue in the soil, and you have to ask

1) will this affect any flowers planted/sown for the bees

2) will the owner of the land be annoyed at the use Of weedkiller?
 

MJBee 

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Thanks all for your suggestions, to answer a few of the posts:-

Spraying - is a non starter the land is all woodland that has not been touched for 10+ years and is a jungle of self seeded saplings, brambles and the dreaded bracken.

Pigs - also no go, too difficult/expensive to fence

Ownership no problem it's mine:)

My solution - I have bought an ancient tractor and brush cutter (pto driven). Once I have cleared all the fallen timber (mix of pine and hardwood) which came down in the big storm of 1999 I will be able to at least cut "rides" and keep them clear. (For the petrol heads my tractor is a 2 cylinder air cooled diesel Deutz first registered in 1956 - easy starter and goes well)
 

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