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Nettles and Goats

 
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Does anybody know - do goats eat nettles.  There isn't an un-mulched patch of ground here that doesn't grow nettles and I was wondering the best way to clear them regularly without resorting to strimming.  I have neighbours with goats and I was thinking of asking them to run them trough our nettle patches. Thanks!
 
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I almost wish I had your nettle abundance! Nettles are tasty! Goats like them too, especially earlier in the season before the stalks get tough, later on they will still eat some parts of nettles though so it would be worth trying goats in the nettle patch.
 
Mandy Launchbury-Rainey
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Kate Downham wrote:I almost wish I had your nettle abundance! Nettles are tasty! Goats like them too, especially earlier in the season before the stalks get tough, later on they will still eat some parts of nettles though so it would be worth trying goats in the nettle patch.


So get them in when the nettles are young and repeat as each new flush arrives?
Pls come and take as many as you like by the way... I am not allowed goats of my own unfortunately but my neighbours are very obliging!
 
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Kate Downham wrote:I almost wish I had your nettle abundance! Nettles are tasty! Goats like them too, especially earlier in the season before the stalks get tough, later on they will still eat some parts of nettles though so it would be worth trying goats in the nettle patch.



I think only people who are not overrun with nettles think they are a desirable species.

In my garden they are they only plant that stops me doing all my gardening barefoot and gloveless. I'm a beekeeper, and consider nettle stings more annoying than bees (they are less painful initially, but more itchy and for longer).
 
Kate Downham
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That sounds like the best strategy. Or invite some foraging and herbalist friends over too!
 
Kate Downham
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Michael Cox wrote:

Kate Downham wrote:I almost wish I had your nettle abundance! Nettles are tasty! Goats like them too, especially earlier in the season before the stalks get tough, later on they will still eat some parts of nettles though so it would be worth trying goats in the nettle patch.



I think only people who are not overrun with nettles think they are a desirable species.

In my garden they are they only plant that stops me doing all my gardening barefoot and gloveless. I'm a beekeeper, and consider nettle stings more annoying than bees (they are less painful initially, but more itchy and for longer).



Yes, that was why I said 'almost'. I am learning to be careful for what I wish for! They are very nutritious and tasty in soup though.
 
Michael Cox
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In an area where nettles thrive they are literally everywhere. Every hedgerow, field, woodland boundary etc around here is overrun with them. "Herbalists and foragers" could stuff sacks with them ever day and not make a dent.
 
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I have nettles growing right outside my doorstep. The goats often smell the nettles when there are around them without eating them. How i have gotten them to eat them if by first cutting them with my electric trimmer and than drying them for a day or so in the sun. This seems to take the sting out and the goat will eat it then. At this point this is to much work for me with all of my other projects going on, and with me having a ton of alfalfa for them.
 
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