To move a mob of pigs takes a lot of preparation. (Unlike a break-out that takes no preparation at all). The Six had finished their smaller sunflower field and were ready to take on the big one. I had been holding off while the biggest and latest sunflower field reached maturity. I want these pigs eating LOTS of seeds. Yesterday, the time had come.
The kunekune and Wai were put behind closed gates – Wai was deeply hurt by this and spent the whole time folded in a blubbery heap on the ground, like a very small rhinoceros, staring at the gate – he hates change of any kind even only for a few hours.
The four escapees were fed right down the back. Sheila and Poppy were fed down the back of their field.
Molly was fed in her house. All so they did not notice the little herd of piggies hooting past their windows.
I also locked the ducks into their house and tied up Boo (moving pigs cannot be hurried). Then I opened all the gates between the pigs little field and the big one. And off we went, lazily wending our way through the farm. Me, two buckets, Ton and six 100 pound pigs. Our rather ramshackle route took us from the salad bar field through the corridor field into the concrete yards through the barn and out the Black Hole of Calcutta room into Molly’s garden, through Molly’s garden into the piglets garden through the piglets garden and out that gate and into the big sunflower field on the North side of the driveway.
This was my big vegetable garden last year. Imagine having a house surrounded in sunflowers – I sometimes think I could sleep in that little tin shed, though I might need a softer mattress.
And there waiting for them was their best wallow, and it was still cold
After a quick dip they get to eating. And the grazing was good!
The clouds rolled in as forecast but no rain came. We could do with some rain but there you are; it is July and it seldom rains in July (yes, yes – unless there is hay on the ground). .
Here is the letter I sent out to Jakes CSA people. I usually sell a reasonable amount of pork through them. First I sell to the locals then the chefs. Feeding families good food is my favorite thing.
This is Cecilia here from Gunther’s Swamp Farm.
Jake, Marty and I are joining forces again and this year I am proud to offer you my Sunflower Pork. This year I took a season off milking the cows, sent them off to live with the bull and grew this years fat pigs in fields of sunflowers, the heritage breeds consume literally hundreds of sunflower plants (I have three ½ acre fields of carefully sown feed for pigs). My Hereford hogs eat the whole plant – if the plant is still young, then move to the seeds (in fact the whole head) as the plants mature. They fell them like trees. The sunflowers have similar properties to acorns and this diet results in some of the best and tastiest meat I raise. (Though the milk raised pork is pretty good too). The ham will be divine!
As well as the left over vegetables from Jake and Marty’s extensive gardens and the oats and clovers and alfalfa grown underneath the sunflowers, this years hogs have been churning through over four dozen boiled eggs, from my own chickens, a day plus a little GM-free corn from a local grower and oats when I can find them.
You can tell I am proud of this product, right?
I have four hogs almost ready to go. I have two booked into Chenoa locker for later next month. Do you want some? There are two Hereford and two Berkshires in this first group. And another group of SIX Hereford hogs later in the summer.
You can order either a half or whole from me (Seasonal Plate CSA People get a great rate at 2.25 a pound hanging weight paid to me and you pay the slaughter and cutting costs when you pick up your meat from Chenoa) and Jake will also be offering smaller cuts at different prices later in the month.
You can book your pork right here with Jake.
ALSO I am offering beef. Pasture raised in fields lined with old mulberry trees (they hoover up those mulberries) and finished in fields of alfalfa. The beef is also being offered in halves and quarters at $2.70 a pound when ordering in bulk.
You can book your beef right here with Jake, too.
I am happy for you to come on out and visit the farm anytime. I am fully transparent and love having visitors. Just send me an email.
You can also check the progress of your animals on my daily farm blog thekitchensgarden.com or on Instagram Cecilia_thekitchensgarden
I look forward to hearing from you!
There you are – we have begun. Now let’s see what happens.
I hope you have a lovely day.
WEATHER: Cloudy and cool again. Very nice. This morning it was 60f when I awoke.
Tuesday 07/31 50% / 0.08 in
Partly cloudy with afternoon showers or thunderstorms. High 77F. Winds NE at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 50%.
Tuesday Night 07/31 20% / 0 in
Some clouds. Low 58F. Winds light and variable.
5:48 AM 8:09 PM
Waning Gibbous, 88% visible 10:25 PM 9:16 AM