We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
JoeC, goldenrod is not a source of allergens. Its pollen is too large to act as a sneezemaker. People tend to associate it with their ragweed allergies in late summer and autumn, because goldenrod blooms about the same time, and ragweed is so nondescript it is essentially invisible.
Do as you wish, but there are several options if you would care to maintain productivity. The least costly is to topdress with fertilizer and mow it repeatedly to encourage grass and discourage weeds. Frost seed some clover into it.
Topdressing lime would be handy, and if the price bothers you then consider it is amortized over 10-15 years. balance that against the cost of semi-annual mowing to keep the brush out.
You should make a profit, and if you do it on shares you should at least cover your taxes.
You know why I work at reclaiming land as a farmer? because some old gentleman, now departed, worked hard to clear timber and dig stumps. Just seems respectful provided there is a nickel in it for me.
If you do as CT suggests and start selling a hay crop from it, would not all your inputs be tax deductable? At least you would be sending a little less money to Obama in the short run. It's a shame to see a field grow up to weeds.
Golden rod is an ideal biomass feed stock for making grass pellets for heating. The grass pellets burn in wood pellet stoves and can be a source of carbon neutral local heat. In fact, the average house can be heated on between one and two acres of fallow land. One large bale of gold rod is the equivalent of about 40 gallons of heating oil. You can see some videos documenting this at: http://thinkingglobalactinglocal.com/heating.html
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