A quick look out my back door reveals a sea of green, courtesy of spring. Not the green of a well-tended lawn or rows of fresh veggies sprouting from the cold ground, but the lushness of a healthy crop of weeds. Unfortunately, weed-control options generally require chemical-laden herbicides, an aching back or a downtown high-rise condo. But one alternative remains for those who are too eco-conscious, lazy or poor, like me, to rid their yard of weeds: renting a goat.
Twenty bucks will get you a goat from Idahorse Farms in Greenleaf for a month. Goats are enthusiastic lawn-chompers who can munch their way through any patch of weeds, including the nasty, prickly thistles and (somewhat ironically) goatheads. All that you need to provide--besides the greenery--is a bowl of water, shelter from rain and the occasional chin scratch. Goats aren't picky eaters and even consider a banana peel a special treat.
Of course, the downside of this healthy appetite means that flower beds are fair game. So, make sure it's the weeds and not the flowers that are within reach. Also, many goats seem to enjoy human companionship, so set up your lawn chair near your goat and kick back while someone else does the work.