Just wondering. Please ignore if its such a silly question. I like experimenting with unusual stuff. (This year I grwo borlotti beans and coriander, stuff not normally grown here.)
I also ran into issues with wheat rust. I have been monitoring that daily and will likely only harvest from the plants that were not stricken with rust to save seed for next year. I know that one variety I will not grow again, as it just hasn't performed well.
I agree with bruc33ef, you need to read "Small-Scale Grain Raising." It is most complete source when it comes to grain in the garden that I have come across.
I got my seeds from Bountiful Gardens http://www.bountifulgardens.org/
For processing small amounts, you can use a mortar and pestle. For larger amounts you can get grinders of various styles, quality, and power sources.
All of my buildling projects should be finished by next spring and i want to move on with gardening and landscaping rather than fussing with building projects any longer (I have been doing some type of building or remodeling every year for the last 38 !!)
I mulched with sorghum hay and so had a seed head sorghum invasive in my beds. My chickens loved this- it was similar to the main ingredient of some bird feeds- and the chickens would eat it from the seed head, no processing just pick (or release chickens on it).
Ever try Sorghum? It's a great crop.
You are right about it being a main ingredient in bird feeds. I don't know why because it is GREAT people feed. You can cook it up just like grits or as I said before cook it up and just add fresh(preferrably raw) milk. You can also blend it up in water, make a thick mix and bake it in a banana leaf to get a very good, moist cornbread. You can also just make cornbread from it or arepas (add coconut milk, raisins and honey/sorghum syrup/sugar). When I say this stuff is great I mean it. It wil expand more than rice and you can get more food out of a cup of this than you can get out of a cup of rice. Grow and cook sorghum. You will be pleased. If you can make some syrup do that too. Last time i tried this I cut up the stems after harvesting the seed, blended them, strained them and then boiled them down into a syrup. The stuff was to die for.
All of the green fibers left after the syrup making can go to your goats or cattle. Or you can make silage.
..... is it ridiculous to grow tiny beds of cereals like oats in say three feet by three feet beds or slightly bigger? how might one process such a product? .......
rogertheshrubber, i posted this elswhere, but maybe it will help...there was an article by Thom Leonard in Organic Gardening in December 1988. i have not been able to find the article online, but hubby had made a copy of it for me years ago. it was called "Staff of Life".
in it he talks about growing grain in your garden......
...."One hundred square feet of wheat planted on reasonably good garden soil should yield a harvest of at least 5 pounds of dry grain......
With a little extra care and attention, that same space can yield even more. John Leavons (How to grow more vegetables) reports wheat yields of 17 pounds per hundred-square-foor bed and projects yields of 30 pounds per 4-by-25-foot bed under ideaal conditions........
Those 17 pounds of wheat will give you flour for 29 pounds of bread. Even a modest harvest of 5 pounds will provide 8 pounds of bread....A 5-x-5 food patch, intensively managed, could give you the saame 5 pounds that you might harvest from as much space...."
I have been busily testing my soil. And getting my information for getting them going. I keep wondering, how will I get the syrup out of the sorghum canes? I also will be attempting sugar beets for a first time.
Lots to experiment with. And about 4 ounces of each seed to work with. Loads to learn, I even bought a book on raising grains on a small scale, and how to harvest them, but sorghum was not mentioned.
My oats are not hull less, but I do have livestock, so they gotta eat too.
Spelt is a winner here, oats died i don't know why, will plant buckwheat instead on that patch, wheat and rye are also doing great.