Turn them in on the garden or not?

Discussion in 'Pigs' started by imthedude, Jan 10, 2017.

  1. imthedude

    imthedude Well-Known Member

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    Do you folks turn your pigs in on your garden or not? I have about an acre of garden that I planted in a cover crop last fall, and I'm thinking of turning 4 pigs in on it next week for a couple of weeks to let them graze on that cover crop and fertilize it since the soils report showed that we're nitrogen deficient.

    We're still about 2 months out from planting anything. Does that leave enough time for their poop and urine to not be too hot come planting time?
     
  2. Murby

    Murby Well-Known Member

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    I do, but probably not the way you're asking about...

    We dump the skin and guts into the garden to rot away for fertilizer the next year. Same with all our deer carcasses.
     
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  3. oldasrocks

    oldasrocks Well-Known Member

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    I think it's an excellent idea but I'm the idiot that thought it was a good idea to put our old hens in the garden to eat all the weed seeds, fertilize and till.
    We had luscious bean vines but no beans because of the excess nitrogen. Maybe pip poop is not as hot.

    I would do it in a minute if the wife would let me have some pigs.
     
  4. gerold

    gerold Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I mix chicken/pig waste together and use it in the winter in my hot beds in the garden. Works great.
     
  5. nobrabbit

    nobrabbit Transplanted Tarheel

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    We have before and it worked out great. So much so if there was a practical way to start a Pig Tiller business I would do it. Here is a pic of our garden plot last season.
     

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  6. Murby

    Murby Well-Known Member

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    Wow.. those pigs did an amazing job.. you'd have a hard time getting it that well turned with an ACTUAL rototiller..

    And just think, they fertilize as they go!
     
  7. bobp

    bobp Well-Known Member

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    We have ours turned into the garden now. They're doing great.
    We put a thick layer of good compost on the garden first, then put up the hot wire. They were turned out free choice on snow.
     

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  8. bobp

    bobp Well-Known Member

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    On the compost.
     

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  9. imthedude

    imthedude Well-Known Member

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    Depending on where in Madison County you are located, we may be neighbors. I'm between Goshen and Tuttle in eastern Washington County. Looks like you got more snow than we did last week.
     
  10. imthedude

    imthedude Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for all the comments folks. Looks like I'll be turning them in there next week.
     
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  11. bobp

    bobp Well-Known Member

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    We're over between Japton and Combs, on ball Creek. We got 21/2"

    I was worried about putting them out due to them not having Electric fence experience. But after a week of having a wire in their pig tractor I turned them out. They reach out and nose test it but then they back off.
    Good luck.
     
  12. imthedude

    imthedude Well-Known Member

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    My father in law grew up somewhere on Ball Creek before they "moved into town" - town being Durham. Small world.

    Good to know about the electric fence.
     
  13. Casey415

    Casey415 Member

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    For me it depends on if you are trying to suppress weeds with your cover crop. If so then I would leave your cover crop on. But if you are going to till it up anyway then by all mean (especially if you don't have a tractor). I have turned my hampshires in the last 2 years but I 'm not going to this year. But pigs are excellent for turning the ground up.
     
  14. StonePark

    StonePark Active Member

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    So how long should you let the ground sit before planting? My ground is too frozen for them to till it right now... but they sure are pooping all over.
     
  15. Casey415

    Casey415 Member

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    I'm not sure about that, I would at least want it to set for a couple of months.
     
  16. nobrabbit

    nobrabbit Transplanted Tarheel

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    Our piglets were born in mid Dec. 2015 and had access to the garden in late January 2016. They stayed in the garden until late March. I went over the garden with a tiller in early May and started planting.
     
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