Updated: Oct 12, 2021
We have learned so much about pasture health this year and importance of rotational grazing. This was our second season with sheep and they have been so helpful in restoring our pastures. At Wozani Farm, one of our main goals is seeing and utilizing the relationships of nature to help build soil health, increase biodiversity and regenerate the land.
The sheep have been helpful in stimulating new growth and adding organic matter back into the soil. We have been practicing intensive rotational grazing this year and have noticed a significant improvement the overall health of the pasture as well as water retention in the soil. Every 3-4 days, we move our small flock of sheep from one small section of pasture to the next - and they won't return to that specific plot for another 5-6 weeks. The goal of this type of pasture management is for the sheep to eat half of the forage, trample the other half and leave behind organic matter 💩. This simulates natural grazing found in nature and promotes carbon sequestration and overall soil health.
The other change we made this year is with tilling - we aren't doing it anymore. A lot of emerging research has shown the repeated soil disruption with tillage destroys the network of Mycorrhizae found in the soil. Mycorrhizae is an important component to overall soil health and plant health in a pasture. It is basically a network of subsoil fungi that have a symbiotic relationship with plants. This provides pastures grasses and legumes with important nutrients from compost and manure that would otherwise be unavailable.
Overall, the pastures are improving leaps and bounds faster than we thought. Next year we plan to add swales to help with rain capture and water retention. We will keep you updated!