5 Crucial Pre-Fencing Steps for Your Equine Property
When it comes to planning your equine property, there’s more to it than just selecting the right materials and design. Diving into how to design your horse property can help you head in the right direction.
Once you have the design mapped out, the next step is to think about fencing. However, there are some critical factors to be considered about the pasture and questions that should be answered before you begin fencing your equine property.
At Stock & Noble, we provide the finest fencing solutions to premium horse properties across Australia and New Zealand. Over the years we’ve helped our clients build their signature properties every step of the way. Based on our learnings from live projects and knowledge gained from experts we will share some key insights into the preparation needed before fencing.
In this blog, we’ll explore five essential steps you should take before the installation of your fencing. Plus, we’ll delve into whether or not sowing and harrowing should be part of your pre-fencing plan and address any other critical considerations.
You will have the in-depth knowledge to make the right decisions about preparing your pasture and have a path charted out for you to create a beautiful property.
Why Your Pasture Matters
Before we dive into the specifics, it’s important to understand why meticulous planning and preparation are crucial. Your pasture is more than just a field for your horses—it’s their primary source of sustenance. Weeds and undesirable grasses can have a detrimental impact on your horses’ diet, which is why it’s essential to get things right for your pasture, providing an enjoyable haven for your Horses.
Step# 1: Terrain Evaluation
If your property has never been fenced or has never hosted grazing animals, or if it features uneven terrain with rocks, it’s essential to assess whether you want to level the surface before installing fences.
Uneven ground can lead to challenges during fence installation and could affect the overall usability of your pasture. Making the surface even might be a wise decision for both practicality and the well-being of your horses.
Our top recommendation is to begin by cleaning up and levelling the property where needed. At the project’s outset, clearing away any unwanted foliage and levelling the land should be a priority. This prepares the ground for subsequent steps, allowing for effective irrigation, optimal pasture experience and fence line placement.
Step#2: Irrigation Considerations
Before diving into your fencing project, determine whether irrigation is necessary. Adequate irrigation is crucial for maintaining a lush and healthy pasture. Evaluate the water sources and the distribution of water across your property. Planning for irrigation needs alongside your fencing project ensures your pasture stays well-hydrated, promoting optimal grass growth.
It’s important to note that irrigation encompasses providing water not only for maintaining lush grass but also for ensuring a sufficient water supply to the paddock’s drinking troughs. The placement of drinking troughs and water sources should also be given careful thought.
Infact in certain situations, property owners may prioritize this over maintaining lush green grass.
Step#3: Fence Line Placement
Carefully plan the placement of your fence lines about prior works such as levelling and irrigation. The location of your fences can impact how efficiently you manage your property. For instance, you don’t want your fence lines to obstruct irrigation systems or create obstacles in the levelled terrain. Mapping this out beforehand ensures a well-functioning layout for your equine property.
Step#4: New Grass Requirements
Consider what elements you need to introduce to your pasture. Are you planning to establish new grass varieties that align with your horses’ dietary needs? Ensuring your pasture has the right grasses is fundamental for the health and nutrition of your horses.
Step#5: Laneways and Access Ways
Evaluate whether your property requires laneways or access paths. These routes can enhance the accessibility of your property, making it easier to move horses, equipment, and supplies. Well-planned laneways can streamline daily operations and reduce wear and tear on your pastures, ensuring they remain in good condition.
Taking the time to address these key considerations before starting your fencing project will help you create a well-designed and functional equine property that caters to both your horses’ needs and your management convenience.
Sow and harrow before or after fencing?
The decision to seed before or after fencing on your equine property depends on several factors and your specific goals. Here are considerations for both scenarios:
Seeding Before Fencing
Seeding before fencing can help establish grass or forage in the area, providing soil protection against erosion and helping to stabilise the ground, especially if there has been a lot of site preparation.
If you need to provide pasture for your horses, seeding before fencing allows you to establish the desired forage or grass before the horses are introduced to the area.
Seeding before fencing can create a more attractive and natural appearance for your property, especially if you’re planning for a lush, green pasture.
Seeding After Fencing
Fencing before seeding can make the construction process easier by providing clear boundaries and reducing the risk of damaging newly established grass. The only constraint here is the limitations on the size of machinery that can access the paddocks once fencing is complete.
Preserve Soil Structure
Heavy equipment used during fencing installation can compact the soil, making it less conducive to seed germination. Fencing first can help preserve the soil structure. In the worst-case scenario, you may need to re-harrow the areas near the fence lines once the fencing has been put in place.
If horses are already on your property, it may be more practical to install the fencing first to secure the area and prevent them from trampling or grazing on newly seeded areas.
In many cases, it’s common to install fencing first, especially if the primary goal is to establish secure boundaries for your horses. However, if you have the flexibility and want to prioritize pasture establishment, seeding before fencing can be a good option. Ultimately, the decision should align with your specific needs, timeline, and the condition of your property.
Consulting with a local agricultural or fencing expert can provide valuable guidance based on your specific circumstances.
Clear on the steps before fencing your equine property?
In conclusion, creating the perfect equine property involves planning and careful consideration of various factors. Your pasture is the lifeblood of your horses, and it’s essential to prepare it properly before installing fencing.
Now you know the five crucial pre-fencing steps, from terrain evaluation to irrigation considerations, fence line placement, new grass requirements, and the importance of laneways and access ways. These steps ensure not only the well-being of your horses but also the efficiency of managing your property.
The decision of whether to sow and harrow before or after fencing depends on your specific goals and circumstances, and you are now aware of considerations for both scenarios. It’s important to consult with local experts to make the right choice for your equine property.
Effective communication and coordination with local contractors are essential throughout your project. Planning, timing, and collaboration are key to success. There are interactive fencing tools available that can help you with the next step of planning your fencing layout and estimating the cost.
If you want to discuss your project in detail or have more questions on the pre-fencing steps, connect with our fencing experts. They will guide you every step of the way to create a safe and beautiful equine property, just the way you imagined.