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Official - Home Gardening and Livestock thread

 
Old 05-07-2012, 11:28 PM
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Default Official - Home Gardening and Livestock thread

I never see much talk around here about growing your own food or taking care of livestock, though I know there are more out there than myself. So let this be a place to show off your crops, discuss techniques, provide advice, and anything else you want to make it.

We've been at our place for a little over 3 years now and have been putting a ton of work into bringing it back from more than a decade of neglect. Now that we've finally started to get some of the larger necessary projects under control and I've finished school, my wife and I have started doing a lot more work around the outside of the house.

It started with a pig. He was given to my brother-in-law as a gift a few years back but has been consumed with school since so he stays with us. Then it was chickens. I don't know what possessed my wife to bring chickens home, but we enjoy having them free range around the house. The chicks started to get bigger and needed a coup. The coup led to ducks. And so on and so forth. Our next addition, as far as livestock goes, will be goats as soon as I fence off the front of our property.

In addition to the animals, my wife has developed a bit of a green thumb since she quit working to stay home with the girls. As with most large projects around here, she gets motivated to get a garden going, and I do the hard work.

Anyway, enough background, ask anything you may and I'll answer as best I can.

A few pics of the homestead.


Main garden was hand tilled, looked like the rest of the yard before we started.




My wife and youngest. This was her first real batch of compost, she started "making dirt" around 8 months ago and has more in the works.


A few from the second batch of chicks. The black one was snatched by a cat/raccoon and the white one became.....





The ducks.


The garden, finished and planted around first week of April






Terry, our rooster.






Plan to raise more of these strictly for eating, though they are some of our best egg layers.


Coup visible in the background.

Anyway, more to come later. Was going to snap some more pictures of the garden today but had other more pressing issues to deal with.
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Old 05-07-2012, 11:30 PM
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Default re: Official - Home Gardening and Livestock thread

your garden is weak
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Old 05-07-2012, 11:38 PM
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Default re: Official - Home Gardening and Livestock thread



As for size, I was hand-tilling with one of these....

It's grown a lot since those photos. I was literally on my way out to snap some this afternoon and had to take care of other **** mid-stride. I'll be putting in several more raised beds, with 1 to 2 rows in each, and building a PVC half-dome green house in the corner. Ultimate plan is to have that entire side of the backyard fenced off for gardening.

Hell, if I eventually pick up a tractor, I've got another 1.5 acres I could till up.
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Old 05-07-2012, 11:40 PM
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pretty ghetto if you ask me, but not bad.
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Old 05-07-2012, 11:47 PM
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at first I was all , but then I was all
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Old 05-07-2012, 11:58 PM
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i can't raise an animal then kill it. it's too hard.
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Old 05-08-2012, 12:01 AM
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Default re: Official - Home Gardening and Livestock thread

Some are not for eating, strictly layers. As for the one that we did cook up already, he was a rooster that started getting territorial and aggressive with the hens, and then started going after my youngest daughter. As soon as he started with that, it was game over for him.

And TBH, the butchering process for chickens really isn't that bad for them.
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Old 05-08-2012, 12:02 AM
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Default re: Official - Home Gardening and Livestock thread

that's pretty cool
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Old 05-08-2012, 02:14 AM
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My garden looks sad cause winter is setting in

I need to build a frame or something with some roll out frost cloth. Been scabbing lambs off the neighbour cause he doesn't want them


I'm looking to grow some more herbs, currently have tomatoes, lettuce, parsley, carrots, onions, potatoes, sweetcorn, beetroot and probably a couple other little things. Looking to make some compost cause it could use some better dirt.
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Old 05-08-2012, 02:26 AM
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Default re: Official - Home Gardening and Livestock thread

I have the know-how but I live in an apartment.

I like your house. I hate cleaning/feathering birds - but I love veggies/fruit. Peaches are pretty damn easy to grow and grow fast.

Composters are easy to make as well.

I'd post more but i'm going to school to take a test.
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Old 05-08-2012, 02:28 AM
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Drip irrigation is your friend in texas, and its really easy to do and since your garden is small you can get away with regular water pressure to do it.
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Old 05-08-2012, 02:46 AM
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Default re: Official - Home Gardening and Livestock thread

Irrigation will be the next undertaking as far as the garden goes. Need to make a few more trellises for tomato plants and such, but watering will be the next big project. As for peaches, that's my only tree at the moment in the 4th pic from the bottom but have plans to add several more.

Really need to get current pics of the garden up doe. It's coming along quite nicely. I know right now we have tomatoes, lettuce, cucumbers, green/yellow squash, green/red/yellow bell peppers, carrots, jalapenos, garlic, and more.
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Old 05-08-2012, 03:04 AM
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Default re: Official - Home Gardening and Livestock thread

Oh I forgot about the peppers, I have a few of them. I like making sauces with them and the beefsteak tomatoes
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Old 05-08-2012, 03:12 AM
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Wife wants to be able to make fresh salsa using only stuff from the garden, so she has at least that much in there
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Old 05-08-2012, 03:22 AM
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Default re: Official - Home Gardening and Livestock thread

RE: goats - they are fun as hell but be aware if you get females that require milking, it's pretty much every 12 hours so if you ever want to go on vacation, you're gonna have to hire someone who can milk them twice daily. It's a pain.
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Old 05-08-2012, 03:27 AM
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Default re: Official - Home Gardening and Livestock thread

Yeah, wife wants to get a grip of Fainting Goats. She has devised a game that involves a cowbell and scoring similar to bowling
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Old 05-08-2012, 03:45 AM
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Default re: Official - Home Gardening and Livestock thread

I like it

But I would probably become attached to the chickens if they were hanging out like pets. I would be too sad to make them into fried chicken lol.
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Old 05-08-2012, 04:08 AM
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Default re: Official - Home Gardening and Livestock thread

for the past few years i have been trying to work towards being more self-sufficient when it comes to food, a la the first couple series of "river cottage". unfortunately because the fiance and i rent, we can't exactly tear up the entire yard to plant crops and keep livestock. we still try to do what we can. I made a couple planter boxes that sit on our patio and we've been growing food it those as well as pots. I've also taken up hunting... although to be honest I haven't had a lot of success with it due to a lack of patience.

i'll need to take some pictures when i get home, but i've already been eating strawberries and lettuces from our crop. some kind of asian vegetable the fiance planted is ready to harvest as well. we gambled and planted half of our crops early due to the warm february/march and so far it's paying off.

one of my hunting buddies felt bad for me and gave me all of the meat from a ~125lb buck he shot, on the condition that i field dressed and butchered it out... a process that was nowhere near as bad as i was expecting it to be. I've been slowly working on eating that meat in a few different forms. after a few different experiments i'm starting to get an idea of what you can and can't do with venison.
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Old 05-08-2012, 04:40 AM
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Default re: Official - Home Gardening and Livestock thread

I have a garden, well not yet as its just warming up over here but I always do grow a garden each year. Livestock....no. Neighbors probably would have something to say about that

This year will be tomatoes, carrots, green bell peppers, chili, jalapeno and habanero peppers, sweet corn, squash maybe (they seem to grow out of control), yukon gold potatoes, hrm what else? Maybe some water melon. Never grew those before.

I'll be starting this weekend sometime. Just need to rent a tiller. Turning that **** over (large garden) is a back breaker

There is nothing better than being able to make a meal with stuff you grew from the garden
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Old 05-08-2012, 04:59 AM
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I used to live on a farm in Central Kentucky. We had a nice garden, chickens, goats and horses. We didn't eat the chickens, we just used them for eggs.

I'd like to have a garden again, but the animals were too much. The horses were cool, it was fun to ride them on the weekends, but the rest was too much maintenance for also having a full time job. I felt like a slave to the property with having to take care of the animals, the garden and mow 7 acres every week.
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Old 05-08-2012, 05:12 AM
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Default re: Official - Home Gardening and Livestock thread

More pics of wife?
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Old 05-08-2012, 05:16 AM
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Default re: Official - Home Gardening and Livestock thread

Originally Posted by 1995Ex_Sedan View Post
More pics of wife?
, later.
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Old 05-08-2012, 05:22 AM
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Default re: Official - Home Gardening and Livestock thread

So besides the chickens that lay eggs, are the rest of those animals just sucking up your time and money that your house could use? Or are you going to start slaughtering goats and roasting ducks?? Reason I ask is that my grandparents raise a bunch of dumb animals and then don't have any money. They act like having a yard full of flies and stink is somehow worth living in a crappy mobile home on a few acres of land.
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Old 05-08-2012, 05:26 AM
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Default re: Official - Home Gardening and Livestock thread

The goats would be for milk/slaughter, yes. Same goes for the non-producing chickens. The ducks were a gift from my brother-in-laws to their nieces, my daughters. I figure they'll eventually fly the coup, but until then they are welcome guests. As for the pig, at this point he's just here, and at times, I'd rather him not be. He may go to slaughter, he may simply die of old age, haven't really decided his fate yet. I'd really like to give him back to my mother-in-law and let him be her issue to deal with.
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Old 05-08-2012, 05:26 AM
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Default re: Official - Home Gardening and Livestock thread

As for the eggs though, how many of you have had truly fresh eggs?
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