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Posts: 62
Location: Eastern Ontario
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goat pig trees
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I am noticing that my cows are not eating and tottally ignoring my black walnuts seedlings growing in my old fields that my cows are helping to restore. . So I am thinking that I could plant a walnut grove in my pasture and get a dual crop. Plus I think walnuts through their aleopathic properties suppress weeds AND promote certain types of grass like Kentucky Blue grass. Other benefits would be additional shade both to animals and to grass.

This all makes a lot of sense to me has anyone ever done this?

 
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Posts: 7501
Location: Victoria British Columbia-Canada
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We had a big black walnut in a barn yard when I was a kid. The animals trampled the green shells off of them. It was too close to the garden, so my mother had to plant tomatoes in a distant corner to escape the juglone.

The animals hung out under it. Their manure piled up there and it was unsuited to the garden so it had to go on the field. Nothing grew under it, but animal traffic was far greater than in a rotational system.

Hazel nuts and others might prove a good choice for those with smaller stock. Big animals will mash nuts into the soil or break them. Goats would eat them. Sheep aren't likely to mash or eat them and if placed around trees before harvest, they'll leave the grass shorter than other grazers do. It would be easy to gather nuts. Their droppings would not cover large areas or pose a navigational hazard (as cow pies do) while gathering nuts. Chicken and rabbit tractors might work under nut trees as well.

I've always liked that saying in your signature.
 
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Posts: 946
Location: 6200' westen slope of colorado, zone 6
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I have tried to get cows to cooperate with walnut trees. They did, for a while, but the walnuts are a long-term, slow growing tree, and sooner rather than later, the cows killed them all. Sometimes they would browse a leaf or two here and there. Sometimes they would rub their sides on the trunks and snap them in half. Sometimes they would get all onry and horn the young trees into obliteration. You get the pattern. I have some rootstocks that still sprout up each year, but the cows ensure that nothing profitable will ever come of them, with their innately destructive bovine ways. I do think that given the large footprint for nut trees, individually caging the trees makes more sense with walnuts than with peaches. So that would be my suggestion, protect the trees if you dont want the cows to eventually kill them. Cows are great for almost everything on a farm, just not young trees.
good luck!
 
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