josh brill

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since Sep 06, 2010
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Recent posts by josh brill

@matt
For Natural Resource Conservation Services (NRCS) programs there has to be some resource concern before they will let you enter into a contract with them. This could be something like erosion problem or water contamination for agricultural practices. For woodland practices it is usually designed to benefit certain wildlife habitat. It’s not a program designed to help start farm business to be eligible you have to have had over $1,000 dollars in sales the year prior to signing up.

At least in Vermont they are tightening up what they will fund and most states are probably going the same way. An example would be animal fencing. If you don’t have animals already on the land then there is no resource concern to address so no money for fencing. If you have animals on the land and you aren’t already rotating, causing soil problems or allowing them unlimited access to water ways. Then you will probably get some assistance. But you don’t get any money until the practice is complete. So you have to put up cash to purchase whatever materials you are using to plant trees or put up fencing.

There is a bunch of paper work in the beginning which is to be expected since you are going to be getting a large sum of money. Then with each completed practice a NRCS employee will come out to inspect the work to make sure it meets their criteria. This isn’t a surprise inspection you have to tell them the work is done. If you sign up for a nutrient management plan or grazing plan then there will be some record keeping that will need to be done throughout the year then sent to the NRCS once a year.
4 years ago
We've been AIing our sow for three years and as long as we have the timing right it has worked well. There are some good videos online showing how people AI their pigs. Watching heat cycles is the most important thing for AIing. It is a little tougher when they are all alone we've found but if you check her for swelling everyday when you feed you should be able to see the difference. If you already think you have a good idea when she is going to go into heat you can order the semen and have it ready. I think most places have stabilizers that give the semen a shelf life of 7 days. With the collection and shipping day that means you have a 5 day window. We normally get two doses so we can do her once she goes into standing and then and the back end. The shipping is usually the most expensive unless your getting a really rare top quality breed so the two doses is a good insurance plan. If you know someone with a boar you can take a towel and give him a good rubbing. Some people say that helps to get the sow to really stand.

The only time we had probables is when we miscalculate the heat cycle and she starts showing signs on friday. Then you wont beable to get the semen before monday.

We add two new sows this fall so we decided to add a boar to the mix to make sure we don't miss anymore heat cycles and to control our genetics a bit better..
4 years ago
The rice workshop will be Apr 12, 2014. We'll start at 10 and go till 4. We will be doing a growing rice 101 from buckets to acres talk in the morning then we will do a tour of our paddy system, a demonstration of small paddy construction and how start seeds and transplaning out the rice. We planned the workshop so that people can go home and start their seeds and be able to plant them out in mid/late may in whatever scale they want. Each attendee gets to go home with a packet of seeds and the knowledge to start growing rice. The workshop is 25 dollars per person.


I really like that style of wheel mounting. I saw someone else earlier this fall with that style and was instantly sold. We use cattle panels for our goat house and wheels that are set at a certain height. We have lots of bumps in our fields so having something that can change height is definitly something we will be doing in our future builds.
4 years ago
His piles weren't anaerobic. He had a container inside the pile that generated the methane. The pile is just like a normal compost pile with a higher C/N. If all you can get is chips adding nitrogen will make it work much more effectively. He used shredded wood and that has a much higher surface area which causes a much quicker breakdown and a faster heat buildup.
4 years ago
Its a broad fork. They work pretty well. Using them on an acre that had not been opened up before wouldn't be very likely unless you are really buff and had lots of volunteers to switch out. We use one to in our double dug beds to loose up compaction and prepping for a new seeding. We also use it in our hugels that have enough soil for it to work in. They are pretty heavy and unless you have a really sandy loose soil usually some secondary soil work need to be done if your going to be direct seeding into it. If you have really compacted soil like we do in some spots it takes a lot of work to get the tines in so doing a large area takes a good amount of time.

http://www.johnnyseeds.com/p-5484-johnnys-520-broadfork.aspx
4 years ago
One of our problems with washing is cycle times between emptying and filling our washing sinks. Our water pressure is pretty low so it takes longer then we would like to fill up the sink. Oversizing on both the drain and the faucet would save a lot of time i think if you are being efficient in other places.
4 years ago
Thanks to everyone that pledged. We made our goal and with 3 days to spare. Anything extra now will go towards our tree order for this year. There are still plenty of spots for our PDC and summer workshop series.
Thanks again
Josh
4 years ago
We had a ham hanging for the past 8 months. The only time we had to do anything to it was during the extra humid period of time we had during mid summer. We had to move it to a place where there was a better cross breeze. Before we moved it it started showing signs of getting some mold on it. After we moved it the mold growth stopped. I was a little worried about eating it the first time. So I just cut off a small sliver ate it then waited a day before trying a bigger slice. I havn't dropped dead yet so I think we are in the clear.
Josh
5 years ago
I'm not sure where you are located but we have 2 6 month old piglets in our open barn right now and the night lows have been in the single digits and tonight its going to be below zero. With a protected spot out of the wind and lots of hay they should be fine. Did you see if they were eating grain at the place you picked them up at? If you make a slurry of milk and grain they should eat it. If they weren't weaned before you got them there might be a period where they don't seem to be growing, but they will start getting bigger in no time. I'm sure Walter will chime in with more experienced advice, but I don't think you should worry to much.
Josh
5 years ago