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Ragwort question

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Ragwort is a cumulative toxin, in that eating a few bits won't do any harm, as mentioned above it takes a fair amount to start spasms, the first indicator, just remember like the fox glove it has its place in ecology, and spraying " willy nilly" for what ever you fancy has severe implications, manual Managment is preferable,

I have worked with horses and cattle most of my life and seen a fair amount of Ragworth, but with Managment of grazing ground it has never been an issue,

I would think at this time of year pulling is the way to go, as any stalks left in situ will wither and that is the window of maximum risk for ingestion,

If you are desperate cut and burn for this year and start a new regime when they come back up,

Keep in mind I am no expert, just someone who has safely managed the weed for decades...

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Arbtalk while dossing!

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I think your right. Control where grazed but don't worry about it in other areas where it won't cause a problem. There seems to be a concept of complete eradication from everywhere.

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I was looking at a solitary Ragwort plant today and it was covered in honey bees and bumble bees. I think nature is trying to tell us something here. cheers, Steve

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I was looking at a solitary Ragwort plant today and it was covered in honey bees and bumble bees. I think nature is trying to tell us something here. cheers, Steve

 

Ragwort has it's place along with a range of other plants that support invertebrates, often ragwort dominates and that's not good either.

I do have a problem when some want to remove all controls and are even suggesting ragwort should be tolerated in grazing land.

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Ragwort has it's place along with a range of other plants that support invertebrates, often ragwort dominates and that's not good either.

I do have a problem when some want to remove all controls and are even suggesting ragwort should be tolerated in grazing land.

 

err, and what is the problem with having some Ragwort in grazing land? I've seen Ragwort in grazed fields.... sheep, goats, horses, cows, pigs.... I haven't seen any of those animals lying dead in the fields that contain Ragwort.

Cheers, steve

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One of the problems with having ragwort in grazing land, is that it can thrive and spread, and if it spreads to hay meadows then drastic action, such as spraying might be undertaken to get rid of it, but the herbicides which effectively deal with ragwort will also do away with many species of more useful flora

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One of the problems with having ragwort in grazing land, is that it can thrive and spread, and if it spreads to hay meadows then drastic action, such as spraying might be undertaken to get rid of it, but the herbicides which effectively deal with ragwort will also do away with many species of more useful flora

 

Why do you think it is so drastic for it to be in a hay meadow? cheers

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Animals will intuitively avoid Ragwort when grazing. It might look a mess but the animals are quite adept at working around the plants even in an infestation. However, in a meadow or any other field used for gathering hay/haylage the ragwort is effectively dried, baled and force fed to livestock. They do not have the same opportunity to avoid ingesting it as they do roaming about in a field and the cumulative effect of the toxins can quickly become a problem.

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Why do you think it is so drastic for it to be in a hay meadow? cheers

 

As per my post earlier, one clump of ragwort nearly caused me the loss of one bullock, £400 plus carcass disposal is too much to bear, as it was it cost a vet callout plus many hours of tlc to get it back eating.

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Not sure if you can still get them but at one time you could buy cinnebar moth caterpillars as a natural control for ragwort, spraying is generally very hit and miss and ideally needs to be done spring and autumn when the ragwort is at rosette stage, also bear in mind that ragwort is bi annual so you may think you've conguered it only for it to reappear and the seed stays viable in the ground for 20 years and is an airborne seed so if neighbouring land owners dont control it you'll mor ethan likely get it back.

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