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Different Methods You Can Use For Brush Removal and Control on Your Fence
Anyone who has a fence on their property will tell you that branches, trees, and weeds are completely unwanted on fence lines. Along electric fences, weeds and brushes can shot out the fence and allow trespassers and livestock to walk through. Removing the brush and weeds, therefore, helps to prolong the life of the fencing and reduce breakage. Trees and bushes growing on the fence lines can cause wires to stretch out, and they may even break when tree branches fall. Loose wires can also cause physical damage to livestock and equipment. Fence lines that are clean can help remove blind spots and prevent vehicle or equipment accidents. By reducing weeds and brushes along the fence lines, you also reduce the fuel load along the fence line, and this leads to a limitation in the amount of heat damage that the wires and posts get in case of a fire. Clean fence lines also serve as fireguards when wild fires happen to come across their paths. The fire department will completely appreciate being able to easily drive around a property when they are at work.
It is therefore important to determine the best form of brush removal along your fence line. There are options ranging from mechanical, chemical, and cultural methods, or a combination of all.
- Mechanical methods: two of the most common mechanical methods of brush removal and control are by using chainsaws or bulldozers. Chainsaws are excellent for selective removal of large trees and saplings without damaging the fence. However, you should remember that most species of trees and bushes will resprout from cut stumps. This is why you should use glyphosate (RoundUp’s active ingredient) or a mixture of triclopyr (Remedy’s active ingredient) and diesel or mineral oil to cover the stumps immediately after they are cut.
The bulldozer may be your best method depending on the amount of brush and tress that are present along your fence line. This method could even be cheaper because bulldozers or front-end loaders tend to be useful when you decide to remove a section of the fence and start over. However, you must remember that using large machinery can disturb the soil on your property and you could intentionally increase the chances of soil erosion on your property.
- Chemical methods: there are numerous chemical options available for brush control. You can use glyphosate to kill a very large number of weeds and brush species during the growing season because it is a non-selective herbicide the best time to use glyphosate is in the spring and summer seasons because it makes it easier to remove the trees and brush after treatment.
A mixture of triclopyr and mineral oil or diesel can be used as basal bark treatment to selectively kill trees and brush by simply applying the mixture on the base of the tree, (up to a 6-inch trunk diameter). However, you must remember that you should remove the tree before it falls on your fence. Also, follow all directions as you should with all chemicals.
- Cultural methods: these are fewer than all the others. The most common is the use of livestock such as goats. It is not a good option, however, because there are no livestock-proof fences yet. Brush along the fence line, even if the fence has a sturdy enclosure, can allow livestock to climb over the fence.
Fire is another method that can be used. However, fire can be quite hard on wire, particularly galvanized wire. It also cannot be used on wooden fences or fences with wooden posts for obvious reasons.
The brush, trees, and weeds did not overgrow in a day, so it will take time to get rid of them. Break the task into manageable portions and then work with patience.