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Monday, August 1

City Grazing

As you can see from this childhood photo of me (Yes, this is really a photo of me!), I have been fond of goats for many years. I have lived in big cities my entire life. Perhaps due to this, I’m fascinated by farms and, especially, farm animals.

It is out of the ordinary to drive down the street and see live animals roaming in someone’s yard - it really makes you pull over to check things out. I just had to find out why in the world these goats were there. It turns out that putting goats in your yard is actually a service called City Grazing.

City Grazing is a San Francisco-based goat landscaping business. An environmentally friendly solution to weed control, who’s business rents out goats to clear public and private land. Whether you have acres or an overgrown backyard, their goats would be eager to eat your weeds and aid in fire prevention, naturally. While they are not out on the job, the herd lives on pasture in San Francisco’s Bayview district, between the SF Bay Railroad and cement recycling plant.

Goats grazing is an ecologically sound practice that eliminates the need for toxic herbicides, chemicals, and gas-powered lawn mowers. They clear brush in areas that people or machines cannot easily reach, like steep slopes or ditches. The goats can help restore soil fertility by providing organic fertilizer.

Why Choose Goats?

• Goats can eat weeds in terrain that is difficult or impossible to mow – steep slopes, between rocks, etc.
• Goats can eat plants that are hard to remove by hand, such as poison oak, thistles and blackberry.
• A managed goat grazing plan can reduce and potentially eliminate species of weeds and invasive plants from an area.
• They eat the plants that fuel wildfires, improving firefighters’ ability to manage and stop fires.
• Goats only need one tool: an appetite! There are no chemicals, mowers, chainsaws, or machines. This means no fuels are used and no emissions are generated, and you don’t have the liability of a worker injuring his or herself with dangerous equipment.
• There is no hauling or dumping of debris. They automatically recycle your plant mass into fertilizer, and work it into the soil with their hooves.

These goats are the cutest weed eaters I have ever seen!

What do you think? Would you skip the yard work and hire goats to come and graze in your yard?


ArchitectDesign™ said...

I just spent the weekend in rural West Virginia and right near my friend's cabin was a goat farm. They were the CUTEST animals of all time! Of course - their cabin is kept weed free by the many deer who populate the area (and make driving home after dinner a dangerous adventure!).

Karena said...

Fascinating Grant!! I can see this would be a good service especially environmentally!

Not sure if I would use them though! They would start a great conversation!


Art by Karena

kayce hughes said...

Love it!

The Vintique Object said...

Hilarious! And so practical! I wonder if I could rent a goat to get the weeds out of the cracks in the sidewalk in front of the house. Those things are impossible!

Grant K. Gibson said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

I LOVE goats too!   We had some on our horse farm and they would follow you around like dogs. Sweet and affectionate!!   Wonderful article Grant!!   Miss Martha 

Sent from my iPad

Lynne Rutter said...

absolutely awesome! can i hire them to clear my neighbor's yard?

Philip Bewley said...

I love this idea, and the fact it is available, and the perfect solution for some areas rather than brush removers.

Anonymous said...

That is just so perfect! This should be franchised...Thanks for sharing.

Paisley Curtain said...

Goats are cute. When we were kids, my sister had a goat, 2 ducks and 2 rabbits as pets. I don't think we had any weed problems during that time. Even ducks used to eat some vegetation.

I think this is great, each year we put millions of pound weed control chemicals and indirectly contaminate our water supply, for the sake of weed free lawns.

Will send a note to our city council and see what do they say. Thanks for sharing it.

J.W. said...

I love goats! My particular favorites are Nubians...those ski slope ears...the Roman nose...elegance on the hoof!

going green said...

Oakland has the same service-you can see them on the hillside as you drive on 580-great fun!

Anonymous said...

I would have them in a heartbeat! It is such a good solution on so many levels.
Thanks for posting this.

Emily said...

These goats are adorable! But besides that, I would totally use them to help clean up my yard. What a great idea environmentally as well!

*Chic Provence* said...

I love goatscaping! They bring hundreds of them to the fields on Edgewood Road near here each spring... such a charming, quiet way to trim the grass!

xoxo Kit

Cristin {Simplified Bee} said...

I saw a herd of these guys trimming a hill near San Carlos a few weeks ago. They were busy - no union breaks for this crew!

Hope your summer is going well.


Aaron Leitz said...

We just had goats clear out our backyard and it was an awesome experience:

Anonymous said...

This is so great! Thrilled to find a goat story on a decorating blog. I'm an afficionado too. You were an adorable child! Love the shades. Thanks for your blog,


My Notting Hill said...

That is such a cute picture of you as a child! I watched a tv show about goat grazing - it makes so much sense.

Thanks for the comment about my old faucet. Went to the plumbing place today and it was all good news, I don't even need to get an adaptor for it. I'm sure my plumber will be happy about that.

Topsy Turvy said...

Goats are so adorable. And, by the way, you really haven't changed much since that early photo. Very stylish, even then.

Uncle Beefy said...

I've actually been looking for a goat rental agency, Grant! This idea is so fantastic and, having grown up with goats, (I mean, as pets... not like I was raised by them!), I can attest to how lovely they are! :)

Hope you're doing well, Mister!

Chic Coles said...

What a great idea.You are so on to something.Thank you!

Anonymous said...

I love when the goats show up in my neighborhood - Miraloma Park. I know, you may have never heard of it, but yes it's in the City. I didn't know about it until I started house-hunting a few years ago. Anyway, the goats come every year (maybe twice a year) and graze on the lawns of the water reserve here.

Hope you're swell!


home before dark said...

I used to tell my husband we should borrow goats for the yard. This is too close! We got rid of our grass and built raised stone beds with gravel paths instead.

I think you should add that pic of you with goat and glasses to your banner. Your mini-me. So DARLING!


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