Jerusalem artichokes in the pasture?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Mountaineer, Sep 15, 2006.

  1. Mountaineer

    Mountaineer Well-Known Member

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    Ok, a weird one (as usual).

    I live on a pasture/hayfield. It's incredibly vigorous, and I don't have the equipment to till sections at this moment to have a good veggie garden. I will for next year.

    Anyway I bought about 20 pounds of JA's. I'd like to get a big huge patch going- sort of for emergency food. I don't care if they spread. I've grown them B4, I know how crazy they get. They are getting soft and need to get planted now, meaning they won't get a tilled spot, just plunked into holes like tulips would be.

    However!!!!! If planted in the field, will they be grazed on by grazers? Are the tops ok to be eaten by cattle/goats/sheep/horses?? Will they be destroyed, or left as last resort by these critters?
    How about for hay? Will there be any issue if they are hayed with the rest of the field?

    It's this 10 acre field, I have plenty of plans for it but at the moment I'm not even sure where to build the house as of yet and there is no layout. There is really no feasible way of containing them here. The water table is very high over winter and I'm afraid they may even rot.

    Any thoughts on this? I was thinking of letting them go wild (LOL) in the back scrub area, but figured there'd never really be grazers back there to keep them in check so they would go crazy. At least in the hayfield/pasture they 'may' be kept in check?
    Thanks.
     
  2. rambler

    rambler Well-Known Member Supporter

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    As a farmer, I want nothing to do with advising someone how to _start_ this horrid thing on their property...... Ick.

    Put them in the fire pit, & never think of these bad thoughts again......

    --->Paul
     

  3. FourDeuce

    FourDeuce Five of Seven Supporter

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    I shared some with a friend who wanted to get them started growing on his "back 40" and he planted them in an out-of-the-way place on his property. Unfortunately, a deer came along and grazed on them and killed them every time they popped up. :shrug:
     
  4. Paula

    Paula Well-Known Member

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    My horses love 'em and will eat them to the ground. Cows like them too.
    I've read that some people plant a field with them, let the cows graze them down just before frost, then let the pigs root them for feed during the winter.
     
  5. Mountaineer

    Mountaineer Well-Known Member

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    Rambler I hear ya- as when I lived in the city they took over the place and came up through the landscape fabric!!!!!

    I hope to hear another couple opinions, but it does sounds like they could just be part of a pasture.... I know theyw ill be permanent even if I TRY to get em all out so I want to know how bad they'd be, in hay/pasture...

    Thanks everyone.
     
  6. bee

    bee WV , hilltop dweller Supporter

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    Mowing them or grazing them(here it is deer) slows thier spread as they must expend energy to keep on resprouting..gave a start too some neighbors and they didn't make it..deer. Have some in the end of a veggie garden area..mistake..the more I till the more those chopped up tubers spread! :grump: ..You can eventually remove them by religously pulling all new sprouts, but they don't bother me enough for the effort...besides I love all root crops; love digging for "buried treasure"!
    As a last note, there is something to be said for a food source that will grow and produce in a pile of road gravel..yes they did! :dance:
     
  7. WisJim

    WisJim Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Around here they are as permanent as crab grass. We plant them in a restricted area where we mow lawn around them regularly to keep them from spreading. I wouldn't plant them in a field, unless I was hoping for a permanent field of them, in which case I am sure that they would refuse to grow, if you wanted them to.
     
  8. Mountaineer

    Mountaineer Well-Known Member

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    LOL! That's probably what's going to happen.