After one morning of running the weedwacker and raking up the worst of the grass, it occurred to me to take a photo. So I plopped down an old kitty litter bucket to show you how tall the grass was after the sheep and before the weedwacker attack. It took three mornings to get the whole area down to mow-able height, about 4"-6" and the majority of the lose grass harvested. I used that grass to feed to the donkey, sheep, and goats.
Now I'm down to the last mowing. Monday, if the weather is dry, I'll scalp the area using the mower's lowest setting -- #1. Then I'll pray for a few sunny, windy days. Because what I plan to do next is to run the rototiller lightly over the surface, cutting off the vegetation at the soil surface. The sun and wind should dry it out and kill it. I'm planning on running the tiller over the surface for 4-5 days in a row, not going deeply, but just scuffing the surface. If 5 days isn't enough, then I'll do 7....or whatever it takes. This method won't kill the burmuda grass, but it should be death for just about everything else except the few clumps of guinea grass, which I will hand chop out.
If all goes as planned, I should be able to start tilling in the compost in one week from now. I have about 12 cubic yards of compost ready to go. That's not enough but it will start a good number garden beds going. Rather than trying to get all the beds going at once, I'll do one at a time. I'm eager to get something planted as soon as possible.