How to ruin a paddock.

I have been watching this paddock over the last year or so, as I pass by a couple of days a week. It looked to me like a fairly normal sort of pasture, complete with a few grazing horses. But then one day the horses were gone, and it was all black. It had been burnt completely, releasing all that stored carbon into the atmosphere, and destroying all those grass roots so effectively stabilising the soil.

Fireweed is a highly invasive and opportunistic weed native to south eastern Africa. It quickly colonises overgrazed pastures and disturbed areas.

It was then left for months and months, so that rain after rain could remove any topsoil, and leave 10-20 cm deep erosion channels in the sand, running the length of the paddock. The natural progression for this distressed ground was of course for the fireweed to move in. Declared a noxious Weed of National Significance, fireweed has now taken over, flowering beautifully to ensure it continues to spread and flourish all over the South Coast. I presume a herbicide will be sprayed next? This will ensure the soil becomes more acidic, and hostile to the microbes trying to heal it. Sigh.

Can anyone explain why this poor management of the land is allowed to occur? Next week…my neighbour who has Astro Turfed his “nature strip”. Again…sigh.