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Napier grass pig feed

 
Jeff R Hodgins
Posts: 21
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I am trying to find real data about Napier grass as pig feed. I currently feed it in small amounts but I want to feed more of it. Napier grass rocks, corn sucks. Polyculture Napier grass, Hairy vetch, pole beans, daicon radish, sweet potato, chayote, fig leaf squash. The 6 foot plus canopy = frost and drought protection.
 
Andre Lasle
Posts: 59
Location: Mille Lacs, MN
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Tell me more about Napier grass?
I want to continue to move my Guinea hogs on to stuff I can grow on my small plot of land.
Many heritage pigs are well suited to forage.....

Have you grown this?
What type of weather can it handle?
 
Jeffrey Hodgins
Posts: 166
Location: Yucatan Puebla Ontario BC
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Pennisetum purpureum Also known as elephant grass it is tropical but the roots can survive light frosts. High iron content C4 grass. Yes I grow it, just starting and need to reproduce it. There are many hybrids, Cuba 22, King ect.
 
Walter Jeffries
Posts: 1085
Location: Mountains of Vermont, USDA Zone 3
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We grow several different types of millets such as pearl millet which are closely related but not as tall. These species of plants do very well in our northern mountain soils here in Vermont and the pigs like them. Corn does not grow well where we are. It is a valley crop. We hand broadcast for storm, mob and frost seeding which works well. Machine work is not an option on our steep, rocky, stumpy pastures. We keep about 400 pigs on pasture which includes these as one of the grasses plus legumes, brassicas, chicory and other forages. We feed no commercial grain feed. Our pigs get some grain from our pastures. Some of what they eat passes through them and is then planted for the next cycle. I look for things that do this (smaller seeds in general) as well as perennials and self seeders.

Cheers,

-Walter Jeffries
Sugar Mountain Farm
Pastured Pigs, Sheep & Kids
in the mountains of Vermont
http://SugarMtnFarm.com/
 
Jeffrey Hodgins
Posts: 166
Location: Yucatan Puebla Ontario BC
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Here is a cool site with lots of feed info http://www.feedipedia.org/node/12365
 
Jeffrey Hodgins
Posts: 166
Location: Yucatan Puebla Ontario BC
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This video shows how to identify Napier grass

This video shows how to plant it

Napier should also never be cut at the ground it should be cut at 6-8 inches from the ground and it should be cut before it becomes woody when it is 4-8 feet tall. Napier is also used in "Push Pull Farming" as a pest control for corn boar. The insects lay their eggs on it but the larva die, they also use discanthus (legume)
 
Jeff Hodgins
Posts: 193
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Planting Napier at high density has proved to be time consuming but once a stand gets going its really good. You can also plant them really far apart and pull long mature stocks down and burry. With this method you can fill a circle 6m in diameter.
 
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