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Root crops to feed the soil - not the wild boars

 
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Hi,

i have a mediterrean small plot of land that has been grazed/harvested for hay over several decades,
and therefore has only litte topsoil and low OM.

So i want to plant some root crops and just let them in the earth to increase OM after they die.

However the pressure from wild boars in the region is enourmous, there is no way
the fence i build will hold them back and the poncirus trifoliata will take some time to be thick enough to prevent
mammals from trespassing.

So i am locking for another solution.

Long story short: Are there any root crops that won't be eaten by wild boars?
 
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Boar carcasses make an excellent soil amendment;)
 
R. Han
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Gray Henon wrote:Boar carcasses make an excellent soil amendment;)



But don't those carcasses attract predators?

Anyway shoting the boars is out of question, because

a) I am not there all the time and the animals prefer to come when nobody is there
b) I have no hunting license
 
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I don't know what roots plants they don't like, especially since they dig.  

I have heard potatoes though I don't know.

If I were in your position, I would plant some rosemary and lavender around your root plant.  We have feral pigs that don't bother those.  I fact nothing bother the rosemary or lavender.

I would try some of whatever root crops are available in your area and see what happens.  maybe daikon radishes, sunchokes, etc.
 
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To increase the organic matter on your land you can always use compost or simply throw all your kitchen scrabs on the ground and let it rot there. Use manure as well and let it rot. A great chop and drop plant is comfrey (also fast growing) and I don't think that wild boars would eat them. A great protection against wildlife in general are raspberry and blackberry bushes which also grow fairly fast
 
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Hey, R. Han,  I don't know where you live but here in France where we have a lot of trouble with wild boars and deer I have been using this:

https://www.amazon.fr/Distillerie-C%C3%A9vennes-Huile-Cade-Vraie/dp/B079Y4MB71/ref=sr_1_6?__mk_fr_FR=%C3%85M%C3%85%C5%BD%C3%95%C3%91&crid=2663GVFZZON7E&dchild=1&keywords=huile+de+cade+vraie&qid=1617626672&sprefix=Huile+de+cade%2Caps%2C228&sr=8-6

Put of few drops on some pine cones or bits of rope or whatever you have and put them around your crop every few feet.  Be sure to use some gloves when you do, as the stink will not disappear easily from your hands even after many washes.

It is 100% natural as it is an oil made from a variety of Juniper: Juniperus oxycedrus.  It is supposedly also good to ward off snake, ticks and all sorts of critters.  It also is medicinal but that would have to go in another thread.
 
Olga Booker
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A great chop and drop plant is comfrey (also fast growing) and I don't think that wild boars would eat them.  A great protection against wildlife in general are raspberry and blackberry bushes which also grow fairly fast



Wild boars eat almost anything they come across, including nuts, berries, carrion, roots, tubers, refuse, insects, small reptiles, even young deer and lambs, and even if they don't eat the comfrey itself, they'd do great damage by digging around it.  They can up -turn an entire crop or dig up a meadow in one night - depending on how many of them in the group.  I can't help thinking that they'd probably have a feast with the blackberries and raspberries, while digging around them for good measure!
 
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Great information!
 
R. Han
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Olga Booker wrote:Hey, R. Han,  I don't know where you live but here in France where we have a lot of trouble with wild boars and deer I have been using this:

https://www.amazon.fr/Distillerie-C%C3%A9vennes-Huile-Cade-Vraie/dp/B079Y4MB71/ref=sr_1_6?__mk_fr_FR=%C3%85M%C3%85%C5%BD%C3%95%C3%91&crid=2663GVFZZON7E&dchild=1&keywords=huile+de+cade+vraie&qid=1617626672&sprefix=Huile+de+cade%2Caps%2C228&sr=8-6

Put of few drops on some pine cones or bits of rope or whatever you have and put them around your crop every few feet.  Be sure to use some gloves when you do, as the stink will not disappear easily from your hands even after many washes.

It is 100% natural as it is an oil made from a variety of Juniper: Juniperus oxycedrus.  It is supposedly also good to ward off snake, ticks and all sorts of critters.  It also is medicinal but that would have to go in another thread.



Hi Olga,

thanks a lot for the link. I do not speak french, so i tried to look up the product name on the internet
and came across another website:
https://mes-poules.com/acheter-de-lhuile-de-cade

Is this the same product?

I ask because it seems, there is a symbol on the bottle:


This symbol indicates that it is dangerous for waterbodies, so i wonder if it is the same product?
melange-huile-cade-1024x538.jpg
[Thumbnail for melange-huile-cade-1024x538.jpg]
 
Olga Booker
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Hi R,

It looks similar maybe just diluted into some vegetable oil so that it can be painted on the chicken legs.  I never noticed the logo about the danger to fish.  However, it makes sense since it is made out of juniper.  Many trees, berries, shrubs and vines also can be toxic to pond life, that includes horse chestnut, pine, black walnut, cherry, redwood, oak and yew trees.  Also privet, holly, jasmine, lantana, datura, English ivy and mistletoe berries to name but a few.  I guess that if you want to use it as a deterrent, you'll just have to be careful not to put any into your pond or too close to it.  Let us know how it goes.

By the way, in the Amazon link, if you just change the .fr to .com for the US or .co.uk for UK or .es for Spain, or .de for Germany etc.. if that country sells the product on Amazon. the page will come up in your language and currency.
 
R. Han
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Olga Booker wrote: I guess that if you want to use it as a deterrent, you'll just have to be careful not to put any into your pond or too close to it.  Let us know how it goes.



Unfortunately my plot is rather small (approx 20m x 60m) and most of the edge is inclined inward where
water harvesting takes place, so if i soak an 150m long rope with that stuff a lot of it will end up in my water.
Furthermore i am in karst, meaning that underground water will flow unfiltered to some place where it accumulates (i am near the valley bottom).

So i am still looking for other options.

Olga Booker wrote:
By the way, in the Amazon link, if you just change the .fr to .com for the US or .co.uk for UK or .es for Spain, or .de for Germany etc.. if that country sells the product on Amazon. the page will come up in your language and currency.


When i change it to ".com" the product is descripbed as "QQL Cat Toys for Indoor Cats Wheel Training Toys with Catnip Tumbler Balance Pet Toys Interactive Kitten Swing Toys Kitten Sports Educational Toys ".


Maybe planting a lot of super hot chillies around the fence might do the trick?
It seems to works for at least some time:
https://www.japantimes.co.jp/life/2016/01/02/environment/teens-find-spicy-udders-keep-boars-bay/
 
Olga Booker
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You only need a couple of drops of oil on a few pine cones strategically placed in your garden.  You don't need that many, maybe just one in every 15/20m.  I may be wrong but I don't think it would do much to your water.  Just a thought.
 
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Feral pigs have me concerned. They are increasing in numbers here, and we have actual winters here.

They build pigloos to keep warm. It's crazy.

The aforementioned oil is a scent-based deterrent. The kind of water accumulation you fear would require you to set up drip lines of it, which is clearly not indicated.

Honestly, if you have trees or shrubs with low-hanging branches, or trees close enough together on your perimeter to string a line between, just dangle pine cones on short pieces of string, like Christmas ornaments. The scale pattern of the cones ensure that any free liquid oil that remains gets channeled into the cones' woody core, where it will be absorbed and released through the cone itself. No liquid will touch the ground, likely even if it were to rain.

Meanwhile, the incoming feral pigs would have nose-level objects, small enough that they wouldn't make them out from a distance, when their vision would be better for it, so that when they get closer, and have a bad time seeing anything, it's just this wall of smell. They can't smell what they'd be wandering in to, and if your land is a depression in the surrounding terrain, as you describe, they'd have to stop and put their heads down to gauge the change in topography, so if the cones hung regularly from their nose to their ground-level, it would be several layers of impasse. Smart as they are, they don't really like charging in where they don't know the terrain.

If there's enough feral pig pressure, though, R., I would perhaps think about that hunting license. I mean, if they are foraging wild and there aren't any endemic diseases that would make them dangerous to eat, you are doing yourself and everyone that follows a favour by stepping into the pig predator niche in your ecosystem.

There aren't many things in the wild that will hunt feral pig if there's anything else available; even with domestic pig genetics, these things can get huge, like hundreds of kilos, and can move faster than laterally symmetrical vertically-oriented bipeds can usually imagine through forest underbrush. And to add to their speed, weight, and aggression, they also sometimes have these neat little tusks that can rip you from leg to groin faster than you can say, "Robert the First Baratheon." And they breed like cats and rabbits. So if you can kill some, hell, even to feed chickens, kill some.

Also, be sure to check local laws and statutes. I don't know where in the world you are, but in many jurisdictions where feral pigs have become a problem, they aren't considered "game," but rather an invasive pest for which there is no season or limit. You just shoot them. You might not need permission, especially depending on what constitutes a "farm" where you are, and depending on what laws in your area enable farmers to protect their livelihoods, and in what way.

Sorry to hear that you have such problems. One of the reasons why pigs do so well is their tendency to eat tubers, almost indiscriminately. They will root them up to taste them, and spit them out if they're unpalatable, and keep right on going.

If your goal is to feed the soil, I wouldn't concentrate on tubers until you have the feral pig situation handled. I would focus on plants, small and large, that act as green manures, and perhaps that make rooting more energy-intensive, especially around the perimeter of your plot. Because of the potential for things to get uprooted, I would look to annuals first, self-seeding if it can be arranged. If the pigs eat your green manure, all they will be doing is accelerating your nutrient cycling. If there's enough above-ground, and if the root zones make rooting difficult compared to grazing, they will take the easy path, and the most of your soil structure should remain undamaged.

Long-term, though, you are dealing with an ecological menace second only to humankind in its destructiveness. I suggest you consider how you might control the population aggressively, though humanely.

Take care. Keep us posted, and good luck.

-CK
 
R. Han
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Chris Kott wrote:
If there's enough feral pig pressure, though, R., I would perhaps think about that hunting license.



The plot is in Croatia, and i do not know about the situation in U.S.A., but here in europe there is an immense overpressure
of wild game through the whole continent. Partly because there are no predators, and secondly because the hunter feed
the deer/boars during winter. Some places they are even required by law to do so!

To give you an Idea of the pressure: We had issues with group of boars roaming in the outside area of the Kindergarten
in the city during daytime!!! Because appeartly those smart beasts know that hunter are not allowed to shot within the city limits.

So apart from the strict weapon laws, this hunters license here not a simple thing.
It requires specifically tending for a huge area where you hunt and is a lot of effort.
So yeah, hunters license is a big deal in western europe.
Nothing like going to walmart and buying the license along with the gun start going.

The surrouning area is pasture and ligth oak/maple forrest with blackberry brambles.
Basically no fruit trees and no other orchard than the one i recently planted... i think i will get
a lot of trouble with the boars once the trees start producing.

As mentioned before, the fence i built is rather sloppy...maybe i can reinforce it with concrete, or at least
put some barbed wire on the bottom...I aim for poncirus trifoliata as long term solution.
gift
 
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