Hi there all,
I would like to clear a 100 foot stretch, 10 feet wide, right next to
my fence (on the outer side). Its all tough brambly and thorny sticks
and some leaves. It won't burn very quickly, and that's illegal in NJ
What can I use to clear it? I could have a go with a hedge trimmer, but
that's looks like a PITA to me, some of the sticks are too thick. Can I
rent something like one of those machines the state uses to clear the
side of the road bushes, only smaller version? Any other ideas?
Thanks, as usual!
I would use my Echo grass trimmer with a metal blade attached.
And I'd wear gloves, blue jeans, and a long-sleeve shirt.
When I was younger, I've cleared stuff like that with a swing-blade.
I have one of those, with the metal blade, but the problem is the brush
is around 5 feet high and there's just so much of it. Those machines
work pretty well for a while close to the gound, but I think I need
something more than that. Besides, I f*$#@&% hate using those machines.
I've used such a combo to thin saplings in Maine. The trimmer has a
straight shaft- don't even think about the ones with a coil-spring
"shaft." 3" diam., maybe 25' high are doable, with experience and care.
There are "flail-mowers" too, like used along various highways, that
use chains under a large rotary-mower deck. Really beat the crap out
of anything that gets in the way.
I'd also recommend using a brush cutter to clear this. Height shouldn't
matter. You want to clear a path through the thorns and get to the trunk
near the roots. Sometimes hedge clippers come in handy in clearing a path to
the trunks. I find that after clearing I need to go back a few times and cut
off new growth.
You could also try Round-Up, I suppose.
You can, but it will eat the fence just as fast as it will eat
the brambles. And they're *REALLY* dangerous. As in, will lift
a rock the size of your head and launch it 100' through any nearby
windshields, walls, or body parts. So you'd probably
be better off renting an operator to go with it.
I've always just used a brush-axe for that
sort of thing, followed up with a lawnmower that I don't
mind abusing. The downside of that for most people is that
the batwing mowers do a pretty good job of mulching, where
a brush-axe doesn't.
You can rent a walk-behind sickel bar mower (at least you can around
here). You can also rent a walk-behind brush hog. Both of these will
do this easily. In fact they are overkill for the job, but it won't
take you long to clear 100' x 10'. Way faster than any trimmer.
However they are both fairly big machines, so you need at least a
station wagon to get them from the rental site to your site. And
you'll need another person at your site to help you unload and load
again (or ramps). You can usually dismantle the handlebars easily, and
you can separate the sickel bar from the rest of the unit -- both of
these things make it easier to transport. If you can't transport it,
most mower places will pick up and deliver for a fee.
The brush hog is also known as a billy-goat (brand name), or a field
Call around to rental places, and to mower sales/repair places, to see
In western NY I can rent a sickel bar mower for $40/half-day, $60/day.
The brush hog is similar, as I recall.
Of course neither will get as close to the fence as a trimmer, though
they will get closer than you might think. I would use the machine to
do most of it, and then do the rest by hand (or with your trimmer
since you say you have one).
Hire/rent a tractor. You couldn't get right next to the fence but you
could sure reduce the handwork.
dadiOH's dandies v3.06...
....a help file of info about MP3s, recording from
LP/cassette and tips & tricks on this and that.
Get it at http://mysite.verizon.net/xico
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.