Hardcore yard area - grass mats?

sonjafoers

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Has anyone used the holey type grass mats over hardcore in a yard area to prevent the hardcore being churned up and if so was it a success?
I’m looking to protect a small hardcore area roughly 24 x 12 foot which will be used regularly by horses to come in and out of field shelters.
Also as an aside are these mats easy enough for dogs to walk on?
Thank you
 

TheMule

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The only problem I can foresee is that they will collect mud etc in them and form a soft layer on top of the hardcore over time and probably sprout up with plants
 

sonjafoers

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Yes you’re probably right TheMule, I’m guessing I’d have to keep it pretty clean but I’m not sure how it would stand up to regular sweeping. I don’t mind the holes filling up but I wouldn’t want a layer forming on top.
Mind you if it won’t cope with vigorous sweeping it won’t cope with horse traffic.
 

TheMule

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I've got stable mats on a bit of mine which works quite well. Ultimately doesn't stop mud being trmapled in from the field. I'm just accepting that the worst bit needs scrpaing off and topping up every now and then
 

sonjafoers

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Have you secured the stable mats in any way? I’ve thought about using them but I’m worried they’ll trip over the edges. If I used stable mats I’d have to use the thin ones to keep cost down and I think they’ll be so light they’ll move around.
 

TheMule

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No, just loose on top, they don't move at all. They're the thin ones but are pretty tough. Mine aren't shod which may make a difference
 

sonjafoers

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Ok thank you very much, I’ve got the thin ones in my Shetland’s stable and wasn’t sure they’d be man enough for the job but from what you’ve said it might be worth a try.
 

MagicMelon

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Ive got a hardcore area which my stable block sits on and the horses stand about on outside eating from their hay feeder. It leads straight into their field so goes from hardcore to mud on two sides. Ive never used any mats over the top and found its always been stable enough. The hardcore was originally banged down - is yours just loose? If so, get someone in with a roller. Otherwise, mine now just tends to have a layer of dirt on top. When its really wet and mud slides over it then I just scrape it off while Im poo picking.

I would think it'd be difficult to poo pick if you use grass mats as the poo will just go in between the gaps (and if they're gathering for hay you'll find they do a lot of poo's round it, I poo pick a barrowload a day from 2 horses and 1 pony round their hay). I wouldnt use stable mats either as if they're anything like mine then they get very slippy if they get a layer of mud on top.
 
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sonjafoers

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It’s been whackered down MagicMelon but I think if they twist on it they’ll scuff it up. I do agree about the grass mats & I’m also worried about farriers nails etc. Thank you for your reply, such a dilemma!
 
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