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HogTree, feeding pigs with a constant dropping of fruits

 
pollinator
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This could go into Pigs and Trees, so...

https://hogtree.com/

Eliza Greenman is currently developping a tree based system to produce fruits, and feed pigs with the fruits falling. She was or is looking for different species and varieties, to plant them in a way that there is permanentely a supply of fruits for the pigs. Among else, she has mulberries, certain varieties of which she quotes Russels that one old tree can feed 3-4 pigs for a few months.

I hope she publishes her tree list, and that everything works out for her production
 
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Hogs need at least 16% protein to remain healthy, I am not sure an all fruit diet would be able to provide that level of nutrition, a grass and fruit diet would work pretty well though as does the Spanish grass and acorn diet used for Iberico hogs.
 
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It looks like nuts and some other inputs will be used. I like this idea. I've been thinking of something similar for my future property. Given my diabetes, I can really only eat fresh fruit, not preserved. So, I've been exploring ways to utilize the rest that will be produced with minimal effort. Allowing pigs to eat the fallen fruit seems like a win-win. I'm also planning dairy animals and pigs will be useful for skimmed milk and whey.

Thank you hans for pointing this out. I will follow her progress.
 
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Walter Jeffries uses fruit trees in his permaculture inspired hog farm in the mountains of Vermont.  He uses double fence lines so the trees themselves are protected. Here, check out his description from his excellent website:

We have a lot of apple trees out in the pastures, primarily wild. Both pigs and chickens enjoy the drops.

One of my long term goals is to plant thousands more apple and pear trees in double fence lines between the paddocks. The fences arranged such that they keep the larger animals off the fruit tree root zones but smaller animals can creep in to eat up the fallen fruit. As the trees grow they’ll extend outward over the paddocks dropping fruit for the larger animals too.

These reserve areas are also good places to plant forages that spread their seed into the pastures to automatically reseed the paddocks annually.

 
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I like the idea of feeding waste fruit and waste vegetables to pigs. Apple cores and peels and the ones that didn't sell, bruised pears and the mash from juicing processes. Around here, mulberries and most other small fruit will be consumed by a wild birds and the pigs would only get the odd one that drops.

I could see having a hog runs between trees, but having a good fence that keeps them away from the trunk. Then when people come in to harvest, any misshapen or bug damage stuff can be dropped to the ground, while the better stuff is retained for human consumption. This has been done forever, and it seems like a good use for substandard fruit.

Bug damaged fruit often ripens faster and falls to the ground on its own. Around here that fruit breeds yellow jackets and other undesirable creatures, so the pigs would provide a good service, by cleaning up stuff that might otherwise feed vermin.
 
hans muster
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Bryant RedHawk wrote:Hogs need at least 16% protein to remain healthy, I am not sure an all fruit diet would be able to provide that level of nutrition, a grass and fruit diet would work pretty well though as does the Spanish grass and acorn diet used for Iberico hogs.



Sure, they eat also the grass under the trees, as well as some nuts, as already pointed out.

Do you know if the "grazing breeds" like Kunekune can live on less protein? Are they just getting fat without growing, or what happens if they eat too much sugar (too many apples)?
 
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Bryant RedHawk wrote:Hogs need at least 16% protein to remain healthy, I am not sure an all fruit diet would be able to provide that level of nutrition, a grass and fruit diet would work pretty well though as does the Spanish grass and acorn diet used for Iberico hogs.




While rooting, pigs are not looking exclusively for roots. IMO that is extra stuff.  They are really looking for worms, grubs, beetles, and the occasional rodent they manage to corner.



 
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The mulberry leaves are high in protein .
I have tried them myself,  fresh they are too tough to enjoy.
My chickens and rabbits don't care for them,  but the pollarded trees produce a lot of foilage, I cut the back twice a year.
Would pigs eat these if they could get to them?

Black walnuts are hard to harvest, but I'm told hogs can crack them easily.
Dwarf Chinkapin Oaks produce low tannin acorns  precociously and abundantly.
They are short and can  spread vegetatively by means of underground rhizomes
Chestnuts trees can be spliced onto oaks trees,  so you might be able to shortcut your way to some full sized chestnut production.
Chestnuts and hazels are great producers, and all of these tree crops benefit from hogs being inured to disease and insect damage.
Hell,bugs in pig food is just extra protein,right?

 
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I don't get the "pigs need this percent protein" thing. Percentages make sense for grazers like cattle because they are eating basically all day and can only digest so much. But pigs are omnivores like humans and can certainly eat with the best of us. Surely if you give it more calories on top of it's basic needs it will just get fat faster?
 
hans muster
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Has someone heard of hogtree.com, or Eliza Greenman lately? Is she doing her stuff and has no time to post, or went something wrong?

To L. Tims: Yes, the will get fat faster if it has more energy. But also a pig can eat only so much, and if it has only sugar without protein will not be healthy.
 
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This is quite an old post but we are somehow following the same idea.
As I posted in my other posts we started a worldwide fruit tree collection that we will implement into our Fruitforest (beside mainly local Fruits off cause).

Pigs will be playing an essential role in our Silvopasture between all the fruit trees.

Just to mention that for example Marula Trees produce between 2000 and 9000 fruits there will be a lot of droppings when we get all our 50 Marula trees growing.

For the right mix and biodiversity we will have between the Marula trees also nitrogen fixer and here we are thinking about 60% Moringa trees growing beside the fruit trees plus other legumes.
Moringa has high protein plus a lot other benefits and is growing at a pace that can keep up with any other pasture.
We use their leaves in our national Dish called Som Tam.  

In a right managed Silvopasture the Pigs will have an abundance of nutrients and keep the damages they do usually to almost zero.
Their digging damages are nothing what the Chickens who follow when the pigs are gone can't fix in a week.

Fruits alone is not the way but adding high Protein levels from Moringa and smaller amounts of other Legumes and for example groundnuts, sweet potatoes, plus Grasses and Weeds will give the Pigs the right diet.

My father does this since I was a baby and a pig that had less than a 4 cm fat layer after slaughter, was just a pig that was too lazy to eat. (He always uses to say this)  
Off cause the European standard is looking for more lean meat but we Thais love fat meat and bacon.

The trees I mentioned tell off cause that you are living in a tropical climate but this system could apply for other regions with the right choice of plants.
 
pollinator
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In the Self-Sufficiency Handbook it says that pigs can thrive on a diet of up to 80% sunchokes. This is easy to implement because they love to dig them up. Once tubers have formed sunchokes can be left in place and the pigs will root them up when turned on them.
 
See Hes
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Hi Fredy

One thing you want to avoid is that the pigs are creating a battlefield between your fruit trees and just to find the right timing where weeding goes over to excessive tilling that disturbs your fruit trees and hence the sustainable fruit production.

Tubers (also our sweet potatoes and ground nuts) will be found in the plots between the fruit trees well away from their roots.

This has one advantage that your pigs voluntarily create areas where water can be stored but still erosion has no chance and your fruit trees don't drown.

Leaving tubers as treat and roots of your annuals will maintain your garden plots for the coming season or next crop when the pigs and after that the chickens have done their job.

They will go for the fallen fruits first without leaving craters.

 
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William Bronson wrote:The mulberry leaves are high in protein .
I have tried them myself,  fresh they are too tough to enjoy.
My chickens and rabbits don't care for them,  but the pollarded trees produce a lot of foilage, I cut the back twice a year.
Would pigs eat these if they could get to them?

Black walnuts are hard to harvest, but I'm told hogs can crack them easily.
Dwarf Chinkapin Oaks produce low tannin acorns  precociously and abundantly.
They are short and can  spread vegetatively by means of underground rhizomes
Chestnuts trees can be spliced onto oaks trees,  so you might be able to shortcut your way to some full sized chestnut production.
Chestnuts and hazels are great producers, and all of these tree crops benefit from hogs being inured to disease and insect damage.
Hell,bugs in pig food is just extra protein,right?



Maybe if the trees were coppiced so the pigs could reach they would.
I'm thinking like how they grow luecaena trees in australia for cows.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8wj14UNTKpo
IDK if that would be worth it to do for fruiting trees but maybe poplar/blacklocust/willow ect if pigs eat those.
At the very least could be harvested for tree-hay winter feed.

Really interesting idea about the chestnut splice and dwarf chinkapins - thanks for sharing.

 
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