Kris Hoffman

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since Mar 22, 2012
North Central WI
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Recent posts by Kris Hoffman

I like this a lot! I do have pigs and chickens and cows. Frankly moving pigs daily is a pain, but so are high feed bills. I do have two 2.5 acre paddocks fenced for pigs (woven wire with a row of barbed at the ground) I may have to give this a try. Thanks!
6 years ago
We use a re-purposed hay wagon as a portable pig shelter. I can store lots of stuff on top of the wagon: a junk freezer with a good lid provides feed storage, a 300 gallon tank holds whey. The wagon provides shade for a dozen medium pigs. When they get larger I will attach the 'awning' -basically a framed out 4x8 tarp. This works really well for our basically flat farm fields, but might not be a good match for a woods situation. I move my pigs every 3-5 days to a fresh patch of pasture. We see planting annuals for our pigs ( peas and oats, turnips and kale). Perhaps too small of an area, but it was really hard on the land and we have since switched to a permanent pasture mix heavy in alfalfa and clovers. Just hand overseeding the spots they root up.
6 years ago
Hey- did you ever try anything with mushrooms to clean out your barn? Ive been thinking along these same lines as we consider enlarging our organic livestock production. We would like to put up a knee wall hoophouse to house animals (pigs and chickens) over winter in Wisconsin. I am always looking for ways to 'stack' things together and am looking at all that bedding and manure as a resource not 'waste'. I would love to use mycelium to help me create organic compost (actual edible fruiting would only be a bonus) turn poo into a little income stream for the farm!
6 years ago
Thanks for the input! Are you raising pigs on spent grains now? part of my concern with spent grains is 'shelf life' a big pile of wet grains is going to mold pretty fast- I thought fermentation/acidification might be a solution to that. I am also mentally weighing the cost of my time in handling/putzing with the feed versus the relative value of the feed. 30 finishing hogs go through a lot of feed and it's all being fed by hand right now! We have 15 acres in pasture- not growing our own pig feed. pastured broilers, couple steers to finish, rabbits in tractors and ducks!
K
6 years ago
Greetings from north central WI -home of beer and cheese. We currently run 20-30 feeder pigs (Berkshire and large black) in a pasture setting- rotationally grazing them over the summer/fall. I am currently feeding organic feed ration plus whey. After a good look at the pig's bottom line and feedback from my customer base- I am investigating other sources of local feed. I can get spent brewer's grain from a craft brew pub once weekly-think a pickup load of 70% moisture, high fiber material with most of the sugars pulled out in the brewing process. I can also get nearly unlimited amounts of whey each week, I pick up in that same old dodge pickup truck in a 300 gallon tote.
anyone have experience in fermenting slop for pigs- would these make decent substrates? the spent grains aren't that valuable for a monogastric digestive system-would fermenting bump up the availability?
alternatively considering using the spent grains as a substrate for wine cap mushrooms.
Thanks! Kris
6 years ago
beautiful gardens-thanks for posting! So after harvest you plant a cover crop going into winter, how will you cultivate the beds in spring to replant annuals. As a novice gardener I am trying to figure out how to keep a hugel in annuals- its not like you can use a rototiller on a 6 ft hill!!
Thanks
Kris in WI
7 years ago
Nancy! I am between Wausau and Merrill. I would love to meet up some time. kris_hoffatyahoodotcom. Just now getting back to my permies reading!
Kris
7 years ago
Thanks for all the quick replies! I think i will compost 1/2 and put the other 1/2 on the garden.

Kris
8 years ago
Bad chicken owner-BAD! too many animals. I am cleaning out the hen house after a wisconsin winter. 2ft thick bedding pack of pine shavings and ammonia! as i break into underlayers. *Live and learn from my mistakes this winter* Some composting and heating occurred this winter but for a the majority of winter it was frozen. Now i have this wonderful organic matter for the garden, but do I need to let it mellow until next spring? Could i incorporate this into the garden now, in a typical year May 15th is our 'frost-free' date here nearly in zone 3, and plant something like corn (off the ground).

Bottom line--can i use fairly 'hot' chicken litter in a garden to be planted in (maybe) 6 weeks or should I save it for 2013?

thanks - I am pretty new to both gardening and livestock husbandry!
8 years ago