Sunday, February 12, 2012


We have thoroughly enjoyed pigs. They definately live up to their name! They will eat and eat and eat and eat. And they eat anything. In the farm world, pigs are very sufficient gardeners. We had them in one area for a few months, then we moved them over to a completely different area. The new area was pure tumbleweeds, and big rooted brush, about three feet tall dense dry weeds. Within two days, the pigs had the new area completely plowed, and fertilized with not a weed in sight. Amazing. Very efficient gardeners, just like all the books say.
It's been very cool learning how to rotate crops and animals to most effectively use up the land and space. Here are some pics of the pigs:

This is what they look like when they eat. All three butts just porkin away. The one on the right is the one we castrated ourselves (see last summers post) and he is also one that we are raising for pork. The correct term for that is "our feeder". The others are mom and dad (sow and boar) who we are keeping for breeding.

Daddy pig

Pepper pots. That's momma. And she is going to have babies in march. If all goes well, she will have about 8-10 babies and we will sell them for about 60$ each. We'll see how that goes. Fun fact: sows are pregnant for 3months, 3 weeks, and 3 days. :-)
And hello, look at the nuts on daddy pig. Look at those nuts! I had to feel them and just holding one of them is like holding a mango in your hand.

Colt hangin out with daddy while doing some farm chores with me.

Enjoying our beef

This is our cow given back to us in pretty little packages. This was only half too! Really, our meat is very lean because we didn't take the time to "finish him out" the proper way. You are supposed to corral them into a confined area, then feed them grain for a period of time. You can do it for a month or up to 4 or 5 months. Well we built his area and started on the grain, very slowly at first. He was doing good so we up'd his grain. After a couple weeks we noticed we was getting lethargic and he had diarrhea. This can potentially kill a cow. So we got nervous and put him back out to pasture. We also called and scheduled Bernadino to come out right then because we were afraid that the cow wouldn't get any better. But by the time Bernadino came, our cow was back to normal, so we could've waited to butcher. We were eager though and we are new at all of this. We just wanted our meat I guess, so we got back very lean meat as a result. When you spend the time at the end to finish them off on the grain, it not only fattens them up, but it makes their meat very sweet.
So anyway, we've enjoyed lots of roasts, made beef jerky, and Nathan has his steak and eggs. It's been nice to have " unlimited" ground beef for burgers or to have in easy casseroles as well.
So now Molly is our lonley heiffer. We wondered about maybe getting a companion for her, but she's doing great without a man in her life. We are actually looking for a calf to raise up with her. We figure our freezer full of beef will last about a year, and by then, our calf will be ready to finish off. So we'll see what we do. We just kind of keep our eyes peeled for a good seller, now that we know what we are looking for and what we can handle.

This pic is of Molly socializing with the neighbors horses. I'm serious, she loves them and sometimes I see her totally talking to and flirting with one of them.

Marinating beef jerky