Brush control methods
Brush clearing can be accomplished in several ways. The method you use should be based on the size and difficulty of the job and the resources available.
The most common method of brush clearing is the good old manual method. An axe, a machete, perhaps even a chainsaw and a heavy duty spin trimmer equipped with a brush cutting blade. This method is great if you don't have a lot of territory to cover. Larger areas can still be done with this method, but it may have to be done slowly over a period of time. In such cases, plan to do a certain area on a regular basis, and keep plugging away at it until it is completed. Keep in mind that you must maintain what has already been cleared while clearing the rest.
In large areas it may be practical to use a tractor and a brush cutter. If the brush has reached sizes larger than a half inch in diameter, you may still need to do some manual trimming.
In some areas it is possible to get a permit for a controlled burn to get rid of brush. When using this method, be certain to follow all applicable regulations.
I hesitate to bring this up, but it should be mentioned. Chemical brush control may be an option to consider. It should be weighed against all factors including environmental concerns. If the brush is doing more ecological damage than the chemical application would cause, and other methods are impractical, using a carefully applied dose of herbicide may be the most environmental friendly option.
Keeping brush away
Once your brushy property has been cleared, you are faced with other issues, particularly, how to keep the problem from returning. If you clear the property, then leave it to itself, you will have the same problem again. Nature abhors a vacuum.
Something will grow in place of what you have removed. Make sure that you have something beneficial growing.
If the area is small and easy to work with, you may just want to use a grass native to your area and mow it as a part of your lawn. If it is difficult to work with, for instance, if it has a lot of slopes, localized high and low spots, or something of that nature, you might choose an easily maintained native ground cover, or native shrubs and trees.
If you have a large area, say, more than a quarter acre, native grasses can still be a good choice and you can cut back on maintenance time and expense by mowing them just a few times per year, leaving them as "roughs" in between. Depending on your part of the country, you could consider such options as grass production for animal fodder and bedding, Native habitats, large gardens or small farming, or even forestry production.
The trick is to get something growing in place of the brush. It is best if you use something that requires little maintenance, and if possible, can be profitable for you, or the environment or both.
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