Report R07 *****

Problem: Ragwort in deer pasture
Where: Port Lympne, Hyde, Kent
When: October/November 2002
Status: SSSI
Area: 48.58 hectares (120 acres)
Detail: Follow-up rosette removal (105 Man-hours)
Report: (see also R.06)

click map for larger version

Our 2nd visit to this site, but our first Autumn / Winter contract pulling Ragwort.

The Ragwort rosettes were well grown (often bushy and 6" tall). The ground was moist, so extraction from the clay was easy. The work was concentrated around the animal shelters and edges to the road. Large amounts of Ragwort were removed and piled for collection (see photos). The 2003 crop was obviously going to be large, so despite the 105 man-hrs of work from our workforce of 3/4, several areas of the 120 acre site were not dealt with.

A further visit in the Spring 2003 confirmed that a lot more work was going to be needed, and that there was an over-riding need to allow the pasture to repair, before control became possible. The turf depth & density on this site needs to recover before control is possible, so the removal of hoofed animals from the site during any period of wet weather is essential. The clay soil is heavy with Ragwort seed (which is relatively short lived), so a policy of no grazing for two years is recommended.

See drawings & site details.

Cost: £1606