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  1. #1

    Default Blackberring clearing

    Hey all,

    I am working on a job that requires the removal of some very overgrown blackberry bushes (probably over 10 years worth of growth)... I have part of it done but the hard part is still coming up. My tractor a brush hog do a pretty good job but now I am getting into some growth that includes some small trees and there is an old building in there (I have already worked around two sides of that).. Also I don't know what is in the bushes and after 1 front flat tire, not sure I want to put my tractor into the unknown. There is probably about an acre or so left. You can see the the pictures what I am working against (and being pretty effective for the most part). I have a MF 1240 (about 30 hp) and a 5 foot mower (just to help with the sizes of the picture)... I have already spent about 6 hours over there to get about 1/2 of the area cleared. The current way I am doing it is to drive through it first, then mow it after knocking down the bush and checking for hidden suprises...



    I know in the future I will need to come back and keep it mowed down but the initial clearing is the hard part.. :^)

    I thought maybe there would be some other options. Maybe renting something would be more effective at knocking all this down..

    My initial thoughts came up with two options:

    1. Rent an small excavator with a mower and work my way through it (Kabota 161). Could use the front blade and a bucket to clear out things I was not able to mow down.

    2. Rent a dozer and just run it all over and push into a big pile (maybe they could burn it later).

    He is willing to pay for the rental of the equipment and my hourly rate to get job done. Plus there is a few stumps up by the house he would like taken out..

    Does anyone have any suggestions? Which option would you go with to clean up the area?

    Thanks

    -photo-1-jpg-photo-jpg

  2. #2
    Elite Member jerrybob's Avatar
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    Default Re: Blackberring clearing

    I use one of these on my tractor to clear blackberry bushes.....works great.
    BXpanded Piranha Tooth Bar

    With the building you describe and the unknown.....the dozer is probably your best option.
    I Intend to Live Forever.....So Far....So Good!

    My memory's not as sharp as it used to be.
    Also, my memory's not as sharp as it used to be.

  3. #3
    Silver Member vrmnthntr's Avatar
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    Default

    I would say a dozer and make sure all the roots are gone.

  4. #4
    Super Star Member
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    Default Re: Blackberring clearing

    No doubt a dozer would work, but we used a tracked skid loader on growth like that last year in combination with our tractors. My son is pretty good with a skid steer or excavator but has no experience with a dozer nor do I.

    We could have done it with just our tractors, but flats are a real hazard in some of that stuff, we still managed to get one.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Blackberring clearing

    So nobody thinks one of the fail type brush mowers (that can take down small trees) on a excavator would be a good fit for this job? I first thought a dozer would be the key but wonder if chopping it up with a mower would be better and easier to clean up.

    Thanks for everyone thoughts!

    Tim

  6. #6
    Elite Member
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    Default Re: Blackberring clearing

    Can't tell what part of the country you are in, but for additional ideas, look at this site:
    Reduce your blackberry thicket to a few stragglers | Oregon State University Extension Service | Gardening

  7. #7
    Super Star Member
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    Default Re: Blackberring clearing

    Quote Originally Posted by sikboater View Post
    So nobody thinks one of the fail type brush mowers (that can take down small trees) on a excavator would be a good fit for this job? I first thought a dozer would be the key but wonder if chopping it up with a mower would be better and easier to clean up.

    Thanks for everyone thoughts!

    Tim
    May be, I just have no experience with one and we piled ours up into brush piles that we can burn or leave for wildlife cover.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Blackberring clearing

    Sorry should have told ya all that..... In Bellingham WA area... North of Seattle.

  9. #9
    Bronze Member johnnyvol's Avatar
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    Kubota L4060, Kubota L2800, MF491

    Default Re: Blackberring clearing

    I had the same thing when I bought my place in 2004 and started the house. Along with the blackberries the area had been clear cut about 15 years earlier and there were all sorts of stump rows to deal with, mostly rotten by then but you just never knew where the next one was. I had/ have a 90 HP 4wd MF491 with loader and did some of it (about 2 of 12 acres) but eventually chose the dozer route with a root rake. Took a couple of days but so worth it.

    Be aware that there could be some very nasty stinging insects nesting up in those thick bushes and trees.

    I suggest a cabbed dozer OR use this as an excuse to buy a grapple.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Blackberring clearing

    I have only once needed to clear similar ground - about 10 acres. It was a previously clear felled pine area and similar regrowth to your photograph and hidden stumps. After much deliberation and discussion involving quantities of reasonable quality whisky (it was the Scottish Highlands) with a neighbour we decided he would do the job with a small dozer he owned. We had previously used it to make heaps out of a less well regrown area, but thought this needed different treatment. He dug a wide ditch and then dragged or pushed all the nearby top growth into it and repeated this across the whole 10 acres. In effect it was similar to using a gigantic plough that tipped all the top growth into the bottom of the furrow. It worked. We seeded it down to grass and the grass grew very well. I then moved to Portugal, but my son saw the land about 5 years afterwards and he said it looked well.

    It might not work for you, and the landowner might not like the idea either, but it is worth a thought.
    Last edited by OldMcDonald; 06-17-2013 at 05:13 PM. Reason: error

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