Mowing Encourages Yearly Return of Grasses and Wildflowers in Texas’ Roadways
The reason that Texas’ roadways are brush free, have excellent grass cover and lots of wildflowers is because at just the right time of their growth – once or twice per year – they are completely mowed. The next time you drive down the highway, compare the condition of the grass in the medians and on the shoulders with the pastures across the fence. The medians and shoulders usually have better grass, less brush and more flowers. This is achieved without costly fertilizers, herbicides, pesticides, insecticides or fire.
The old bison herds used to do this on open ranges. Today something similar is accomplished using large herds of cattle. The process by which cattle are managed for this purpose is called holistic planned grazing. The principle is the same as on Texas’ highways: At just the right time, intensive grazing (‘mowing’) – followed by long recovery periods – reduces brush and maintains healthy grasses and desirable forbs like wildflowers.