Blackberries - to goat?

We have blackberry brambles, a LOT of them. There is a mass of them between two of the paddocks as well as a lot of them out the front. As well as this there are the beginnings of blackberries all around the property.

When we drove through England we would pick the blackberries at the side of the road to eat in the car and go out and get some for our Sunday pie. I never knew they were such a pest!

Blackberries are yummy yes! They are also a noxious weed. They are throny and attach to all parts of clothing if you walk within 3 metre of the brambles.

So we need a plan to get rid of these blackberries, as much as I would love to keep some to make pies.

So how do you get rid of blackberries? Poison apparently, Round Up to be exact, yes the horrible Monsanto company that is poisoning the world. I am not ok with that.

Plan B - cut them all back by hand. So from the few I cut back this morning I have learned - don't wear lose clothing, wear chain mail gloves, this is going to take a long time. And of course that is only getting rid of what you see. They are weeds, you need to get to those roots. The roots are massive and very hard to pull out, and that is the small ones I have tried so far. I can't even imagine how bad the big ones are going to be to get out. But it is still better than Monsanto.

So I turned to the Gardening Australia Facebook page. 22 replies, 20 say goats. Goats and Deer, both introduced animals to Tasmania, are the only animals that will eat blackberry brambles. Yes we still have to sort out the roots but apparently these goats just munch away and get it all done for you. Some people have also suggested pigs to dig out the roots also.

So do we goats? I wanted goats but they are big escape artists and I need to learn how to look after them before I just get them for their help. Are our fences good enough for goats? I can't just go out and buy goats. It feels very strange that that is my main option.

We will start with the clippers, see how we go, and consider the goats I think. Any goat feedback?

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