Pasture has the potential to provide
1. The horses nutrition
2. A Safe exercise area
Potentials rarely achieved, often neglected

All information given here is believed to be correct but the author cannot be responsible for any consequences of it's use.

Pasture Management

by Denis Lindsell
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Weed Control









Creeping Thistle

Spear Thistle


St. Johns Wort



Ragwort - Scenecio jacobaea

Growth Habit

Biennial or short lived perennial, short thick tap root with stout laterals, rosette in 1st yr., tall flowering stem following yrs.

Encouraged by

Lack of vigour in sward growth, physical damage (poaching). Ragword produce large numbers of seeds which are carried in the wind

Physical Control

Digging and removal. (In the past grazing by sheep has been considered an option as they did not appear to be affected to the same extent as other animals. However this is not recommended.

Chemical Control

MCPA, Glyphosate on individual plants


Poisonous (hepatotoxicity), caused by alkaloids fresh and dry. Horses are unlikely to eat the growing plant but are more likely to eat wilting plants. If horses do start to eat ragwort, they may then develop an apetite for it.
Although ragwort is well known for it's dangers to horses, it is thought that proven cases of ragwort poisoning are small in number, the amount of plant material required being at least several kilograms. However damage can occur over a period of time.

Ragwort is covered by the Weed Act of 1959 and you can be forced by law to eradicate these.

The young plant
Young ragwort plant

The mature plant
mature ragwortplant

The flowers
Close up of flowers