As we head into a new growing season, I'm incredibly excited to see the yields I can produce from my potato and fodder experiments.
Growing potatoes has become an intriguing hobby for me.
I'm fascinated by the way that these plants work.
Either you can grow identical plant clones through growing tubers and seed potatoes (like most people do) OR you can grow them from seeds and produce off the wall genetics, which I would love to do.
I will be trying to obtain seeds throughout the early season, but it doesn't look likely.
In spring, I will be growing a couple of different potato strains.
My hopes are to harvest seed pods from these plants, so that I can start those seeds for micro tubers throughout the 2018 winter.
Then, in 2019, I will plant those micro tubers and grow full sized plants.
Maybe not for others, but learning how to grow potatoes is a huge hobby for me.
Just the idea of producing interesting new strains or reproducing existing ones excites me like a surprise Christmas gift!
As for fodder, I know it offers massive benefits in the world of livestock.
I plant to use red wheat as a fodder, which is sold at my local Co-Op for $9.XX a bag.
In the end, I'm paying roughly $10 for a 50/lb bag.
Now, this 50/lb bag could yield between 200/lb and 400/lb of fodder, it just depends on several factors including:
--Age of grain
--Age of fodder at harvest (it grows very quickly, harvest time affects weight)
--Amount of sunlight
--Amount/frequency of watering
Using this fodder, I can offer my chickens and rabbits and excellent source of protein and vital nutrients.
Fodder is essentially sprouted grain, the tender green shoots have a high nutritional content.
I can greatly reduce feed costs, and I can even incorporate my fodder growing program with the goats and pigs that we intend to purchase in the spring.
I would love to find a way to feed our livestock for less than 50% of the cost of traditional grains, what many farms do.
This would be an incredible goal, as our primary focus is to feed our family as naturally as possible as cheaply as we can.