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Ian Rule

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since Dec 18, 2015
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Just some guy, obsessed with Permaculture, blah blah.

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Nevada County, CA
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Recent posts by Ian Rule

I dont dislike any plant or animal. That being said - when it comes to rats or foxtails, Im not afraid to declare war; and give my 'enemy' no peace. Kingdoms require armies - garden require walls. Big beautiful walls!
4 years ago
I also went through many pains to avoid using nitrates for bacon  - they were in vain. Nitrates are the only guarantee of safety.
4 years ago
Contain the dogs or contain the plants. If the dogs are small, mayhaps a raised bed would do.
4 years ago
Are you familiar with Sepp Holzer? His theory is that pigs are specifically to be used for otherwise unusable land - river canyons, steep hills, forest. I would imagine pigs would do well if not fabulously on your land, but I am unfamiliar with your biome.
My own experience with running pigs shows that they not only rapidly "enrich" a piece of land, but they also gradually terrace each paddock by entirely upturning the hillside - leaving more matter toward the downhill than at the start. Seeing as I want terraced paddocks, this is saving me a lot of work.

Get them pigs! Good luck.
4 years ago
This video (and others like it) killed being vegetarian for me.

Heads up - HARSH VIDEO

4 years ago
We recently welcomed a pig onto the farm from another, closing down farm.
Shes almost 700 lbs and hands down our largest pig. She spent the last 2 years alone after her siblings were butchered (and the family lost the will to finish off all the pigs) without any other pigs or company in her pen. She was angrily uncomfortable and nervous the first couple weeks and I had nothing but doubts for the safety of the situation. After a few weeks of exposure to other pigs, exploring her new area and getting used to us bugging her every day, shes doing great. However, when she was charging and snapping at me, I admit I was considering the 'other option'.

Best of luck, hopefully she calms down and integrates!
5 years ago
I should clarify - the salted areas wont be fed to dogs.  
I also figure Ill freeze the meat for at least 3 weeks before feeding to dogs... slowly.
5 years ago
Howdy Pig Permies.

I am devastated and ashamed. I killed two pigs last weekend, and hung them in the root cellar after the slaughtering.
During November I killed my first and hung her in the root cellar, along with two rams, and salted them every day for over a week. The butchery went very well and the product was beautiful - very worth ending my 10 year stint as a vegetarian.

Being a high level dunce, I didnt realize the root cellar was ~40-50 or so degrees all winter, and that at the end of June, its 65-70. I cant believe I didnt think about it. I salted the two girls every day, and only noticed a vinegar smell in the fatty crevices on tuesday - so we butchered one asap, and it was awful. All the fat (guinea hogs, so lots of it) was gelatinous and sour smelling. The meat doesnt seem bad, but its all surrounded by the fat so I assume it makes no difference. I went through with butchering them in the hope of at least using them for the dogs.... It was a horrible experience. Ive still got another night of butchering to do for the other girl.

My first pig went great, and I felt like a fine journeyman thanks to my permie/youtube teachers. However, this experience has destroyed my confidence and made me aware of how unqualified I am to be leading slaughter/butchery events. I havent consumed meat I havent produced for over a decade - but now Im starting to wonder if the terror an animal experiences during a trip to the USDA approved slaughterhouse (that kept me a staunch vegetarian for so long) is better than the risk of some moron killing beloved pigs for.... dog food.
Is it even safe to feed to dogs?
What do I even do with the 50lbs of semi-rendered lard from ONE of them, let alone two?

I really dont know what to do. Deeply uninspiring experience.
5 years ago
When I hear "gift economy" - I see an unemployed, upturned hand who has never been blistered from pro bono soil-work.