From PAULA AND ADAM
Even though vegetable production is at a near stand-still, we still manage to get pretty dirty around the home ranch and farms. In raising animals, we have daily chores, such as feeding, watering, and general check-in – checking that ewes are taking care of newborn lambs, ravens are not bothering our pigs, making sure the few cows we have are still happy out in the rangeland, and so forth.
If you’ve been keeping abreast of our farm development, you know we are striving to be a self-sustaining farm, creating all the fertility for the crops on the farm and importing as little feed as possible. These goals express both environmental/biological sustainability and economic efficiency.
So, we are increasing pork production, which entails feeding more pigs. We aren’t at the point where we can grow all the feed we need yet, so we acquire local and organic sources of feed. Right now, we have wheat and rye growing in Ukiah; cross your fingers that we get a good crop! Depending on what’s available, the kind of grain we use varies. Right now, we’re going through triticale from Lake County, which we know was grown with organic practices. We also purchased some wheat – too infested with bugs for human consumption – grown in Humboldt County. Most of this cereal goodness, we grind down for easier digestion by our pigs. We use a grinder we got from the old Moore’s Flour Mill in Ukiah, but we’d eventually like to upgrade to something that can grind whole corn.
We soak the ground feed in goat whey or milk from Pennyroyal Creamery in Boonville. Sometimes, we soak whole kernels to sprout them.
What can we say. The pigs are eating, happy, and enjoying the sunshine.