Are you having a vegetation issue?
It is easy to see that our roadsides, open fields, woodlands, backyards and water sheds are becoming overrun with invasive species and other unwanted vegetation. Machines often can’t get to problem areas, humans hands are very labor intensive, and herbicides are dangerous to our waterways, soil, and desired vegetation, not to mention animals and humans.
If left alone, invasive plants take over our woodlands, strangling valuable trees and threatening important diversity. Open grasslands and neighborhood backyards become overrun, creating a loss in farming productivity, habitat for birds and other wildlife, and enjoyment of outdoor space.
When it comes to clearing unwanted vegetation, goats can provide an ideal alternative to machines and herbicides. They graze in places that mowers can’t reach and humans don’t want to go (yes, they love Poison Ivy). In fact, goats eat a wide range of invasive species, which on the East Coast include Kudzu, Oriental Bittersweet, Ailanthus, Multiflora Rose, Japanese Honeysuckle, Mile-A-Minute and much much more.
Goat Grazing Facts:
- Goats have been used by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Bureau of Reclamation, the Bureau of Land Management, and the U.S. Forest Service.
- Goats love broad leafed material, which means brush and invading field vegetation are consumed. But they don’t prefer grass, so it is left to flourish.
- Corporations such as Google are using goats for vegetation management. Google wanted a clean air alternative to noisy gas powered lawn mowers and didn’t want toxic chemicals for their weed control. Since the cost of using goats was about the same as mowing, using goats allows Google to show their commitment to low-carbon, non-toxic alternatives
- Goats are agile and light on their feet, so they can be gentler than machinery when working on historical sites and other areas that need special consideration.
- Herbicides seep into water and soil, affecting other vegetation, animals and humans. They also can encourage mutations among vegetation, creating greater and greater problems instead of solving them.
- Grazing goats are very effective at eating the kinds of excessive weeds and brush that pose a risk of unwanted fires.
- Goats can be stubborn, but they are docile. When effectively led and fenced, they go only where you want them to go.
- Goats have a narrow, triangular mouth that allows them to crush what they eat, so seeds that might otherwise get passed through to fertilization are not viable. This is a true advantage, since machine cutting only encourages further growth in the next growth cycle.
- Goats fertilize as they graze, then trample the fertilizer, so that the wanted grasses and other vegetation left behind are given a natural boost!
- Goats have special enzymes in their guts that allow them to eat plants that are poisonous to other animals.
- Goats can climb, allowing them to reach invasive vegetation that grow in hard to reach places. And, since they eat vines and stems, they can graze at a lower level of a tree covered invasives and as a result, either kill the vines systems that reach higher into the trees or reveal them so that they can be cut.
Not every piece of land is suitable for goats. We offer a free visit to walk your property, evaluate your needs, answer your questions, and determine if goats would be a good choice. We assess the vegetation, ask questions to determine your wants and needs and then provide you with an estimate given the acreage, vegetation, time and materials involved.
In most cases, green goats are visited on the job by Green Goats staff once a day. We check for stability of fencing, evaluate the grazing, and make sure everyone is eating according to plan and most of all happy.
Don’t want the poison ivy, poison oak, poison sumac, multi-flora roses, honeysuckle taking over your property, are you a Government agency looking for fire breaks and to reduce vegetation for fire fuels we can help? When you hire goats to clear land you don’t need to dispose of the debris. You get the job done without machinery pollution and you don’t need to apply for land clearing permits because the goats don’t disturb the ground, it is called Targeted Grazing. Goats can easily clear land on steep hillsides and rough terrain and can go were people and machines cannot go safely. This all saves you time and money. Give us a call and find out how we can help you. Not all job sites work out for the goats, meaning it is not always best to hire the goats, again that is why an evaluation of your project is necessary.
Goats love eating unwanted vegetation – that is their natural food, and we enjoy being able to provide that to them. You never have to worry about harming the soil with herbicides when you hire our goats, and, best of all, the goats leave an all-natural fertilizer free of charge behind for you which as a bonus will trample into the ground for you. Goats are designed to eat about 1/3 of the day, lay down and chew their cud 1/3 of the day, and sleep 1/3 of the day. The goats typically eat 20% of their body weight a day. That is why no two jobs are the same as far as how many goats and for how long they are at your residence.
FAQ: They do not eat english ivy as a first preference, if you have an english ivy problem and that is the only thing for the goats to eat our goats are not the best choice for you. They will strip the plants and trees they enjoy from the top down, they eat the ground cover last. They will leave the stalks of the briar bushes and small trees. Please do not expect the property to look like a man-powered weed-eater went through when the goats are finished. The goats DO NOT discriminate when eating unwanted vegetation on your property, if you have trees that you DO NOT want the goats touching then make sure our team knows of that before the fencing has been put up. The goats typically DO NOT eat bark off the trees as first choice, but again they will eat whatever is in their reach. We will NOT be responsible for the goats eating trees that you do not want eaten if they have been fenced in. Please take all of this into consideration before having us come out to do an onsite evaluation. If the job is less than a half acre Green Goats is not your best option as we do have a minimum charge that may not be feasible for a small lot.
Often, a one-time application of the goats serves primarily to clean out a certain area for the immediate future, thus making it easier to maintain from then on. Repeated applications of goats are less expensive, shorter in duration, and lead to total and permanent eradication of invasive and undesirable species of vegetation typically 3 visits. AND, each application of goats provides more free organic fertilizer, and aeration of your property courtesy of green goats. If you price organic fertilizer at the store, and then consider that each goat drops about two pounds of pure organic fertilizer each day, that is a big bargain considering they also aerate the fertilizer into the ground for you.
If you desire that totally finished look, you will need to hire a landscaping crew when the goats are finished.
Preview the pictures of previous and on going jobs of what the goats can do. The goats must be kept in fencing for their safety, they can NOT be tied to a post or blocks, we provide all the temporary electric fencing, shelter, water trough, and man-power; all you have to provide is the unwanted vegetation – we do the rest. Call today, 443-964-4972 for your free estimate. GREEN GOATS serves Maryland, Virginia, Deleware and Pennsylvania. .
Mary is also Advisory member to the University of Maryland Eastern Shore for the SARE project using goats to eat unwanted vegetation in the DelMarVa area. Mary is honored to be part of the project and looks forward to more to come with the goats.
JOIN OUR Green Goats FACEBOOK page to see regular updated pictures of the goats in action.
Green Goats are Famous, read all about us in The Calvert Recorder.
Here is just one place that you can find our Green Goats enjoying their job. Full story
Our Green Goats are famous in the Washington Post, read the full story
Green Goats on WTOP Washington, full story
Washington Post tells how to hire Green Goats, full story
Live Interview with Mary Beth Marsden, WBAL Radio
Green Goats were highlighted on WTOP , Michelle Basch 8-30-2013
Live interview Green Goats WTOP Aug, 2013 Michelle Basch at St. Ignatius Catholic Church Port Tobacco, MD.
Maryland Independent Interview 9-6-13
Green Goats Annapolis Capital, Pat Farrell 5-5-2014
WTOP Goats:eco-Friendly landscapers, 5-5-2014
View more videos at: http://nbcwashington.com.
Green Goats in action. Our goats love doing their job.
Annapolis Capital 5-5-2014, Pat Farrell