Holistic planned grazingAt Quinta VAle da Lama
“ because grasslands & animals need each other”
What is Holistic Planned Grazing?
One of the key tools in the Holistic Management framework as conceived by Allan Savory, Holistic Planned Grazing (HPG) is a method for bringing grasslands and the grazing animals that co-evolved with them back into mutually beneficial relationship.
Why do we care?
As this natural pattern has been broken, and animals have been herded into massive CAFOs (Confined Animal Feed Operaions), the effects on virtually all elements of planetary ecosystems -from atmosphere to underground aquifiers and everything in between, including animal and numan health- has been disastrous. This is a maladaptive pattern that needs to be changed at once.
What does it mean in our context?
In the Algarve’s Mediterranean climate zone, grasslands turn quickly to impenetrable brush -a serious fire risk- without some form of maintenance. Given a choice between “fire-breathing machines” and grass-eating animals, it’s pretty obvious which is the more regenerative solution!
How do we do it?
Using lightweight portable fencing to mimick the natural pattern wherein predatory animals act as “enforcers,” we keep our grazing/ browsing animals (sheep, chickens and donkeys) moving in fairly tight groups around the landscape such that they work each patch of ground completely, and then don’t return until vegetation has come back stronger.