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hog tilling, killing perennials for cereal planting?  RSS feed

 
                              
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Hello, I wonder:

I've heard a bit on the no-till arguments and wonder, is hog tilling also bad for the soil? I read in a lot of book that the pigs are like roto tiller and then that roto tiller are bad for the soil...

Also, in a no till farm, how would you kill a perenial like clover in order to plant something else, like rye or wheat to build up soil? I'm talking about a few acres so sheet mulching can't work...

thanks

Alexis
 
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Clover will build up the soil as it is a nitrogen fixing legume; you might try planting other things among the clover. Seed balls might work.

http://www.green4v4.eu/content/fukuoka-bonfils-grain-cultivation-method

http://www.agriculturesnetwork.org/magazines/global/monocultures-towards-sustainability/how-to-grow-winter-wheat-the-fukuoka-bonfils
 
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Alexis Hatfield wrote:
I've heard a bit on the no-till arguments and wonder, is hog tilling also bad for the soil? I read in a lot of book that the pigs are like roto tiller and then that roto tiller are bad for the soil...

Also, in a no till farm, how would you kill a perenial like clover in order to plant something else, like rye or wheat to build up soil? I'm talking about a few acres so sheet mulching can't work...



Hog tilling is good for the soil and will probably eliminate your clover (though not sure why you'd want to). Given enough time and/or pigs they'll eliminate everything in their paddock.
 
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I seem to remember that in one of Paul's video interviews with Helen Attow (sp?), she mentions using cover crops, maybe even clover, and then just sort of cutting it back prior to planting her vegs - not killing the clover, but inhibiting it's ability to immediately compete. (May have instigated some root-die off, which fertilized the soil?) Can anyone find that video?
 
                              
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Can you explain the theorical difference between pigs tilling and machine tilling? I've read that pigs can till soil a few feet below ground if you put corn underground... just trying to understand why one is good and the other is bad...

thanks for the reply nancy, I could try that. I would like to be able to have a legume for a few years to fix nitrogen then some grain for a few years to add organic material to the ground...
 
Cj Sloane
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Alexis Hatfield wrote:Can you explain the theorical difference between pigs tilling and machine tilling? I've read that pigs can till soil a few feet below ground if you put corn underground... just trying to understand why one is good and the other is bad...



If you leave pigs (or chickens) in one spot long enough they'll eat just about everything like so:
Pigs not eating blackberries></a>

Well. they ate everything except the thing people think they'll eat - the blackberries. Maybe that's because that was their bathroom area.

Anyway, pigs do fertilize the area they're tilling but I don't think they wreck the soil structure like a tiller would. Maybe there's some compaction going on but all the earthworms and whatnot weren't killed! This photo is not a great example because there was so little soil to start with - really it was subsoil with a little grass on top. Come to think of it, that's a good example of pigs beating out the machine. A tiller wouldn't have worked here! The blades would've bent because its subsoil and ledge. When I put a swale in I had to use a pick ax!

People do bury corn if they want the pigs to till aggressively - like turning over a compost heap or to dig up root stumps.
 
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