horse paddock

How Do You Maintain A Paddock

Paddock maintenance is essential to the health and viability of your horse. A Paddock or a corral as it is commonly known is a fenced-in grassy area used to contain horses or other livestock. The most common design provides an area for exercise and is often situated near the stables. Horse breeders may let stallions loose in a paddock or field with mares that they would like the stallion to impregnate. This allows the most natural form of mating to occur and the regularity of mating using this method promotes the chances of a mare becoming pregnant.

Paddock maintenance is essential to ensure that you are providing your horses with a safe and secure environment, as well as a nutrient-rich sward which they can graze on.

General maintenance of your Florida paddock is essential to ward against wear and tear brought on by horses trampling and grazing on the grass in the paddock. If a paddock is not correctly managed or maintained throughout the year, then it can become an expensive fix. Daily use from horses and the severe heat from the Florida weather conditions can take their toll on your paddock, leading it to become an unsuitable environment for horses and other animals.

Haverland AG specializes in maintaining Paddocks as well as equestrian field maintenance. Over decades we have developed a special set of skills to allow us to keep your paddock in tip-top shape. here are just a few of them:

Harrowing and Rolling

Harrowing is often carried out on fields to follow the rough finish left by plowing operations. The purpose of this harrowing is generally to break up clods (lumps of soil) and to provide a finer finish, a good tilth or soil structure that is suitable for seedbed use.

We conduct harrowing in the spring as it helps to remove dead grass, weeds, and bugs that wake up in the springtime. This process enables growth and sets the stage for the development of new roots. The process of harrowing and rolling is essential for a healthy paddock. This procedure allows air and sunlight to reach the roots, thus allowing the soil to breathe and improving water infiltration. With the sunlight improving overall ground health, bacteria should be greatly reduced following harrowing.

We roll the ground after harrowing to ensure that it is level and improve the growth rate of the grass in that area. The rolling process helps to prevent water from collecting in the in the holes created from harrowing. We avoid compaction of the soil by ensuring that the ground is firm when rolling in order to limit grass growth.

Soil Analysis

We recommend that perform soil analysis around every two years to check the soil pH and nutrient levels in your paddock. At Haverland AG we recommend that soil analysis be performed during the later part of the year. The results of a Florida soil analysis will allow us to assess the quality of the graze that you have, and indicate whether your soil structure and composition are beneficial to your horses. Having well-maintained soil will provide good quality grass that will give your horses the necessary levels of nutrients and protein to keep them healthy and strong.

We remove a sample layer from around six inches below the surface and mix it together. We compare it with samples from other sections of the paddock and so that an overview of the paddock health can be found. During the testing phase, we ensure that the ground is free from droppings by removing foreign matter from the soil to ensure that the sample is not contaminated.

We are ideally looking for a soil content that is nitrogen rich and also had the correct phosphorous and potassium that are essential nutrients for horses.


To ensure that a nutrient-rich sward is provided for horses we apply a fertilizer to our paddock to improve the grass and ensure that a healthy paddock is maintained. At Haverland AG we know that not all fertilizer is  suitable grazing horses so we use only veterinary approved fertilizer that is suitable for the animals that will be in your paddock and is guaranteed to not be harmful to their digestive system.

We also apply fertilizer based on the type of grass so ensure that we get the best possible results.

Once our paddock pros have carried out a soil pH test, we then apply a slow-release fertilizer to the paddock. We do this to ensure that there will be an adequate supply of nutrients in the soil over a long period and allow the grass to absorb the nutrients naturally over a longer period of time.

Reseeding / Overseeding

The ideal time to reseed is between March and September. This is usually when the most rain falls and gives the seed the best chance of sprouting due to the availability of sunlight and moisture on the soil. We carry out reseeding to improve damaged paddocks. We perform Overseeding of your paddock by adding seed to improve the appearance and playability of the turf during the winter months.

Due to the different grass types found in Florida, we one paddock may have more than one type of grass. So for the reseeding process the grasses may require a range of seed types. Haverland AG uses a process that produces seed easily. We utilize a mixture grass that is vet approved for horses as it provides a good nutrient base.

Spraying and Topping

Anyone that has a paddock or even a backyard knows how much of a challenge weeds can be. Weeds might seem ominous but they can be harmful to your horse’s digestive system. We use a non harmful spray that is one of the most effective ways to manage weeds. Our team at Haverland AG ensures that your paddock will remain weed free and our qualified PA1, PA2 and PA6 professional utilize the best Herbicides fat a time when weeds are actively growing in order for the effect to be maximized.

There is a debate surrounding whether land should be topped or sprayed first, however each has its plus points. For example, if you are unable to see weed growth, then topping is essential so that you can assess whether spraying needs to be carried out. On the other hand, if weeds are present or have turned to seed, then spraying should be carried out before topping. Take care to allow time for the herbicide to penetrate the roots, as topping soon after will remove the herbicide.

Paddock maintenance is a year-round process, and prevention is far better than the cure, so ensuring that you stay on top of land management tasks should be an integral  part of your Florida paddock management program. Let the professionals at Haverland AG take care of keeping your horse paddock in great shape. For any inquiries about our services, you may call us at (561) 369.7994 or visit our contact page.