Advice needed - Tilling weeds to plant pasture grass

I have about an acre of pasture that I would like to return to a more natural setting. I think I blew it last year by keeping the grass short during the growing season (December - June). This enabled the weeds to stay short and produce a ton of seeds. This year the weeds sprouted first and it looks like they're blocking out all of the light for the grass to grow.
My plan was to till the top couple of inches to kill all of the weeds, or at least expose the soil, so I can spread some grass seed (Fescue or Rye) and let it take off before the weeds can get a foothold again. This time I was planning on letting the grass go to seed before mowing it.
I was planning on doing this in late December because all of the weed seeds that dropped from last year seemed to have germinated, and it still gives me plenty of time for the grass to grow with the winter rain.
BTW, I live in central California in the foothills. Minimal frost, and rain through March-May.
I would appreciate any suggestions or comments to this plan. TIA.
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What exactly do you mean by a more 'natural setting'? If left alone, pastures will tend to become weedy as the smaller plants and weeds inflitrate, typically followed by larger weedy plants, like brambles, small shrubs and even trees.. Weeds are opportunists and will sprout up when and wherever they can, typically where the human hand is lacking. They are also among the first plants to colonize or reclaim open areas.
Simply tilling the soil is going to expose and allow to germinate a lot more weed seeds than if you left it alone. As long as you can select a pasture grass that is aggressive and fast growing and can out-compete the weeds you may have a chance.
Pastures, when actively grazed, tend to be relatively weed free, or at the very least, weed-controlled. Have you considered bring in a goat or other ruminant?
pam - gardengal
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