As I have mentioned in earlier posts we will be bringing feeder pigs onto the farm this spring.  In preparation for them I am diving into everything hog related.  I have decided to document it all here and on my youtube channel.  Videos will give you a first hand look at what goes on raising feeder pigs from 40 pounds up to just shy of 300 pounds.  

I will record the good, the bad, and hopefully the not too ugly moments of being a beginning pig farmer.  Look for The Pastured Pig Program (working title) this coming spring! 

Between now and then I still have a lot of work.  We are still researching breeds and will most certainly go with a mixed breed.  We will also make sure that mom was pasture raised as well.  Other than that the rest is still to be determined.  This winter will be filled with research and visiting local hog farmers.  Come spring we will have a clear direction set and a plan in motion! 

Stay tuned for more info on the Pastured Pig Program and any other pig related news.  If you have any suggestions or comments we would love to hear from you.  As always email or leave us a message in the comments section. 

Fall is nearly gone, winter, and spring will be here before we know it.  This year spring will bring a new animal to our farm: pigs!  I am excited and nervous to take on this new enterprise.  Although we are just bringing in a few feeder pigs to start I have been trying to prepare for them the best I can.  

I recently went to a seminar regarding pig nutrition.  It was very informative and I gained a lot of knowledge that will surely help me in the 2016 season with my pigs.  As most of you know we are a pasture based farm and this will be true for the pigs we will raise as well.  While pigs aren't ruminants like cows and sheep, they can gain quite a bit of their nutrition from a quality pasture. 

To provide the pigs with the best possible diet and nutrition I will be growing certain crops specially for them.  While I will still be buying in feed from a local Non GMO row crop farmer I will be growing a great deal of my own pigs food.  Tree crops and perennials that we were planted years ago will provide some nutrition: apples, pears, Siberian pea shrub, sunchokes, mulberry, and acorns will help supplement the pigs standard ration.  Annuals like mangles, rape, sunflowers, pumpkins, and other legumes will also aid in fatting up the pigs.     

Next up for our pig enterprise is to find a farmer to source feeder pigs.  we will do this while also deciding on which breed or cross of breeds to raise.  Keep an eye out for more pig posts coming later this winter!

And if you have any suggestions on pig pasture plantings or pig breeds feel free to email or leave a message in the comments sections! 

Day 3 of Edible November brings us to the Almond tree.  The almond is closely related to Day 2 edible which was the peach. 

Much like the peach the almond tree thrives in zones 5-9.  Almond trees even grow a somewhat edible outer "husk" just like the peach.  Although the prize of the almond tree is the almond itself and not the outer husk. 

Again the bloom of the almond tree is quite remarkable and will be mistaken for an ornamental.  During full bloom bees will be buzzing all around your almond and peach trees.  If you are or know a beekeeper or bee enthusiast then you will want to grow an Almond tree in your backyard.

While certainly not as sweet and juicy as its relative the peach the almond is just as useful and delicious.  Almonds store longer and can be added to baked goods or eaten raw out of hand.  Almonds will ripen in early fall and can be stored and eaten all winter long.

Next spring we will be adding a few pigs to the farm.  In anticpication for this I told a pig class a few weeks ago. 

I learned a ton about all aspects of raising pigs on pasture.  I plan on spending a few days at my friends farm this fall to gain a little bit more advice and knowledge.  Hopefully this will get me started off in the right direction come next spring when we bring in our first batch of feeders. 

Below you will see pictures of some simple but very important equipment you will probably need to make taking care of your pigs a little easier.

More to come regarding pigs as we plan and prepare this winter.  If you have any pig questions email or leave comments in the notes.  I will be sure to run them by experienced pig farming buddy.