Anyone use bamboo as a regular source of feed? - Homesteading Today
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  #1  
Old 10/21/10, 09:45 AM
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Anyone use bamboo as a regular source of feed?

Animal feed that is. I think I posted something like this 5 years ago and didn't get many responses, just wanted to see if anything has changed.

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Old 10/21/10, 09:47 AM
 
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  #3  
Old 10/21/10, 11:59 AM
 
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We have planted some bamboo for our goats, then we had to sell our goats because I couldn't take care of them after my back surgery. Once I recover, we plan on getting some more, hopefully in the spring. I think it was reading your thread on bamboo that made me decide to research it. I liked what I read, so we planted it. We're also planning on transplanting some kudzu, since it's also suppose to be good fodder for goats and grows very quickly here in Georgia.

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Old 10/21/10, 12:21 PM
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Bamboo is good to feed goats and rabbits, Kudzu can be fed to just about anything on the farm except probably horses because its soo rich,

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Old 10/21/10, 12:24 PM
 
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wow i would have never even thought of that, what an awesome idea, bamboo grows so quickly and being virtually impossible to kill once its established...i feel stupid for not thinking of it!!!

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  #6  
Old 10/21/10, 12:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Sonshine View Post
We have planted some bamboo for our goats, then we had to sell our goats because I couldn't take care of them after my back surgery. Once I recover, we plan on getting some more, hopefully in the spring. I think it was reading your thread on bamboo that made me decide to research it. I liked what I read, so we planted it. We're also planning on transplanting some kudzu, since it's also suppose to be good fodder for goats and grows very quickly here in Georgia.
Careful with the Kudzu, it can cause a lot more problems than solves, it may also be illegal. When it comes down to it, I like bamboo a lot better because it is evergreen. Kudzu will die out with the first frost and not come back in until late spring. So unless you are going to bale it (which can be done) you still have to come up with some winter feed.
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Old 10/21/10, 10:28 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Matthew Lindsay View Post
Careful with the Kudzu, it can cause a lot more problems than solves, it may also be illegal. When it comes down to it, I like bamboo a lot better because it is evergreen. Kudzu will die out with the first frost and not come back in until late spring. So unless you are going to bale it (which can be done) you still have to come up with some winter feed.
I'm very familiar with Kudzu, we had it growing right up to our property line when we lived in Alabama. With regular lawn maintenance we didn't have a bit of trouble with it. Yes, we were planning of baling the kudzu. My thoughts were that both bamboo and kudzu have many nutrients in them that goats need. Since both grow very quickly, it just seems to be the idea way to supplement our goat feed. I did check on the laws in Georgia and from what I can determine it's not illegal to grow kudzu. Even if it was, there's no way that they could know we planted it, since it's growing wild just down the road from us, but I don't believe in breaking the law, so I did check into it.

We actually tried to transplant some kudzu last year, but it didn't take, so we're going to try again in the spring.
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Old 10/21/10, 11:20 PM
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Somewhere recently I read that bamboo can have a reaction in ruminants that causes it to be toxic (accumulates cyanide?) but was safer for horses. Maybe in Equus magazine??? Can't remember right now but I know that running types of bamboo can be very difficult to remove. I planted some with a barrier once and it escaped and got under the neighbor's fence, running 15 ft without a sign on the top of the ground. When I got busy pulling it up, it had sent runners in every direction and was diffuult to eradicate. .

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  #9  
Old 10/22/10, 06:44 AM
 
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In order to keep bamboo on place, its a bit laborous, but worthwhile:

Trench around the area you plan to plant the bamboo
make this trench deep enough for 2 cinder blocks, laid on top of each other
put the cinder blocks all the way around the planting
of course, make the solid side of the block facing the plant
We then re-sod over the brick are, so you don't see it.
Seems to work here.

Kudzu: was just talking with a friend about this stuff...if it is growing wild, why not just harvest that and use it for feed? Kudzu is so invasive, and without regular maintenance, takes over....everything. Banned in most states from new plantings. One of those things they brought back from WWII that will never go away!

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  #10  
Old 10/22/10, 06:50 AM
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Kudzu was started here to control erosion which it does but, it is also very invasive. My DD has bamboo on her place that is very invasive so I think I'll tell her about the goats. Maybe she can put a fence around the area and put a few goats in it.

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  #11  
Old 10/22/10, 07:36 AM
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Originally Posted by where I want to View Post
Somewhere recently I read that bamboo can have a reaction in ruminants that causes it to be toxic (accumulates cyanide?) but was safer for horses. Maybe in Equus magazine??? Can't remember right now but I know that running types of bamboo can be very difficult to remove. I planted some with a barrier once and it escaped and got under the neighbor's fence, running 15 ft without a sign on the top of the ground. When I got busy pulling it up, it had sent runners in every direction and was diffuult to eradicate. .
The toxins are present in the tropical varieties (typically the clumpers) and not the temperate running bamboos (Phylostachs). Folks in the farthest southern regions my want to confirm their species before using it for feed.
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  #12  
Old 10/22/10, 03:19 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sonshine View Post
I'm very familiar with Kudzu, we had it growing right up to our property line when we lived in Alabama. With regular lawn maintenance we didn't have a bit of trouble with it. Yes, we were planning of baling the kudzu. My thoughts were that both bamboo and kudzu have many nutrients in them that goats need. Since both grow very quickly, it just seems to be the idea way to supplement our goat feed. I did check on the laws in Georgia and from what I can determine it's not illegal to grow kudzu. Even if it was, there's no way that they could know we planted it, since it's growing wild just down the road from us, but I don't believe in breaking the law, so I did check into it.

We actually tried to transplant some kudzu last year, but it didn't take, so we're going to try again in the spring.
Air bag root it.
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  #13  
Old 10/23/10, 01:44 AM
 
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Originally Posted by am1too View Post
Air bag root it.
Never heard of air bag rooting. Can you explain it to me? Thanks.
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  #14  
Old 10/23/10, 03:08 AM
 
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Maize (sweetcorn) stalks make a good cattle / goat feed when dried, and if dried could also be baled for winter. It is best to chip them first, more palatable I guess

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Old 10/23/10, 02:26 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rowan57 View Post
Maize (sweetcorn) stalks make a good cattle / goat feed when dried, and if dried could also be baled for winter. It is best to chip them first, more palatable I guess
pit silage
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  #16  
Old 10/30/10, 11:14 AM
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Erik the flutmaker uses bamboo to feed his goats. www.eriktheflutemaker.com his youtube video's are very entertaining.

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  #17  
Old 10/30/10, 12:32 PM
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Years ago we used bamboo for cattle feed. We found out there were many other plants that you could grow in the same space that did a much better job.

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  #18  
Old 10/30/10, 12:32 PM
 
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Sorry - I have two posts open at once. Ugh!

We regularly feed bamboo during the winter to our goats. They love it and we have never had a problem, but it is not their only source of food.

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Last edited by Bfly Farmer; 10/30/10 at 12:34 PM. Reason: I'm an idiot
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