Miscanthus Horse bedding is rapidly becoming the go-to bedding for horse owners due to its high absorbency, quick mucking out times and its eco-friendly credentials fitting with the global move to more sustainable choices. Many have still not heard of this completely natural alternative to wood shavings and other forms of bedding, read on to find out exactly what it is and how it works as a great bedding material.
Miscanthus is a perennial grass with a 20 year+ life cycle and can reach over four-metres tall each year. It’s grown on marginal land in the UK which is unsuitable for food production and research has shown it thrives on waterlogged land and helps to stabilise flooded soils. It enhances even the poorest land, promoting biodiversity, attracting wildlife and improving soil health.
Planted once in the form of either rhizomes or plugs, Miscanthus survives each winter, is harvested each spring and grows back with no fertiliser needed or land work. The majority of the harvested crop is baled and used to fuel renewable energy power plants to generate electricity for homes and businesses, but it’s also used for animal bedding, eco-friendly household fuel and there are current developments in using it for construction materials, bio-plastics and more in the near future.
One of the greatest sustainable benefits of Miscanthus is its ability to store more carbon than it releases in its lifetime. The rhizome network below the ground along with the decaying leaf litter generated by Miscanthus stores carbon each year as it grows. Alongside this, the above soil biomass recycles all the carbon that’s being produced through the life cycle of the crop, which includes planting, harvesting and burning at power stations. This means Miscanthus is a carbon negative grass which is assisting the UK in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and meeting 2050 net zero targets.
Miscanthus has a spongey inner core which is known as the ‘pith’ inside the cane, this gives Miscanthus horse bedding it’s super absorbent qualities which straw and wood shavings cannot compete with. It’s an ideal bedding material because it can absorb up to three times its own weight in moisture and is naturally woody, so has a low dust content which helps prevent any respiratory problems. The high absorbency also reduces mucking out times, helps the bedding to go that bit further and is more cost effective in the long run, as any wet material compacts together and is easy to pick out and top up with fresh.
Due to the natural credentials of Miscanthus, the bedding carries less bacteria which helps to reduce unwanted odours, fly activity in warmer months and makes it an extremely hygienic choice for horses to bed down on.
Unlike other horse bedding materials, Miscanthus is 100% biodegradable and can be beneficially incorporated back into the soil. After muck heaps are rotated over a couple of months the organic matter will not remove nitrogen from the soil to break down like other materials. This makes disposing of it much easier and better for the environment.
Miscanthus is comfortably the best bedding choice for horse owners who want clean and highly absorbent bedding which does not damage the surroundings or contribute to climate change.
Buy 100% Natural Miscanthus horse bedding today by visiting the Terravesta Equine online shop.