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Trees for Animal Feed List

 
gardener
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Location: Western Washington
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Next week I'm teaching a free class on home orchardry. I live in an area where people are very invested or interested in livestock raising. One element I would like to include in presentation and handouts is information on growing animal feed using drought tolerant trees and shrubs. I've done some research but it's been difficult to come up with lists of what works and what doesn't, as well as an adequate species list. I've heard that people use the following trees (and in some cases their fruit) for animal fodder. What is your experience? All ideas are welcome.

Mulberry (fruit for poultry and pigs; leaves as high protein fodder that can be coppiced)
Apple (fruit for storing as animal feed; leaves fresh and as tree hay)
Elm (I don't know much about this one)
Ash (same as elm)
Hazel (Came across it for fodder but I've never experienced using it that way)
Persimmon (fruit for fodder)
Storage pears (same)
Honey locust? (I've heard mixed things about using it for fodder)
Linden (I hear it can be coppiced and used for fodder)
Siberian pea shrub (for poultry)
Chestnut (nuts as fodder; leaves as fodder or tree hay, can be coppiced I have read)



 
master pollinator
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I know you cannot use Cherry because the leaves will wilt, and that causes cyanide to form, and will kill the animals.
 
gardener & author
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Location: Tasmania
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Tagasaste is a popular fodder tree here, I'm not sure if it would go well in your climate or not though.

Oak was once used as tree hay, and pigs eat the acorns.

Goats eat lots of trees. Mine especially like white maple/sycamore maple and all kinds of acacias.
 
master pollinator
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Location: Ashhurst New Zealand
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I'll second the tagasaste. My only reservation is whether the winters there would be too cold for it. Willows and poplars are excellent fodder crops, especially in terms of how easy they are to establish.
 
gardener
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Cedar elm is the dominant tree in my area. Both my horses and sheep eat it. The sheep love it. I cut branches down for them.
 
pollinator
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Location: Henry County Ky Zone 6
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My sheep love black locust but it is toxic to horses. The horses wouldn’t touch it thankfully.
The sheep love invasive bush honey suckle.
 
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Kris schulenburg wrote:
The sheep love invasive bush honey suckle.




Good to know. That stuff is everywhere around here!
 
James Landreth
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Thanks everyone!

Has anyone fed grape leaves?
 
wayne fajkus
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I have native mustang grapes and my cows eat them readily. The sheep don't have access to them so i am not sure.

What sucks is collecting grapes. Because the cows eat all the vines within their range, i have to use a ladder to get to the grapes.
 
Kris schulenburg
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Sheep love grape leaves. Most any type of leaves. They will sometimes only eat a limited amount of water maple.
 
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Goats eat grape leaves, I wish i had ash around here to feed to my goats. If you have salal growing where you are goats readily eat this anytime of the year.
Goats also eat willow, elderberry, most berries.
 
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My sheep go crazy for maple
 
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James Landreth wrote:Next week I'm teaching a free class on home orchardry. I live in an area where people are very invested or interested in livestock raising. One element I would like to include in presentation and handouts is information on growing animal feed using drought tolerant trees and shrubs. I've done some research but it's been difficult to come up with lists of what works and what doesn't, as well as an adequate species list. I've heard that people use the following trees (and in some cases their fruit) for animal fodder. What is your experience? All ideas are welcome.

Mulberry (fruit for poultry and pigs; leaves as high protein fodder that can be coppiced)
Apple (fruit for storing as animal feed; leaves fresh and as tree hay)

This woman is really digging in to this topic like no one I have seen, she has been researching tree fodder and forest management for several years including what various animals prefer (including various storage methods), nutrition content etc. It's probably way beyond the scope of your class but absolutely fascinating

https://3streamsfarmbelfastme.blogspot.com/p/sare-grant.html?m=1

Also I must add poison ivy to the list, goats love it including vines, berries, etc. And all roses.


lm (I don't know much about this one)
Ash (same as elm)
Hazel (Came across it for fodder but I've never experienced using it that way)
Persimmon (fruit for fodder)
Storage pears (same)
Honey locust? (I've heard mixed things about using it for fodder)
Linden (I hear it can be coppiced and used for fodder)
Siberian pea shrub (for poultry)
Chestnut (nuts as fodder; leaves as fodder or tree hay, can be coppiced I have read)



 
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