ANSWERS FROM THE URBAN HOMESTEAD

Were the animal medicines disposed of in some green-way? (e.g. recycled or prevented from entering the water system?) Max

No, no of course not. Nothing was in fact thrown away! By “cleaned out” I meant tidied/ organized. Hope that clarifies and waylays any of your concern. Anyhow, if any holistic medicines had needed to be disposed of we could just empty into our compost pile since they are completely natural.

Some other readers also commented how their chickens eat paper. Thankfully we have no such problems with ours. They could careless about theshredded paper bedding. The shredded paper is of paper stock quality with very little ink.

Hi there – I’m fascinated by your description of the benefits of apple cider vinegar! I’d never heard this. I’m getting ready to start my own (first) flock, so tips like this are greatly appreciated. One question I have: When I clicked on the “apple cider vingegar and poultry” link, there is text at the bottom that states: “Cautions:Apple Cider Vinegar should be applied to the skin diluted. I always keep a spray bottle handy in the barn and kitchen”. How much water do you add to dilute the apple cider vinegar in your spray bottle for topical use? — farmgirl_dk

Your chickens look wonderful! DO you add the apple cider vinegar to their daily fresh water? How does it affect their calcium and eggshell formation? – Cathy

Apple cider is great to have in any medicine cabinet. Not only is it good for animals even humans to treat all sorts of ailments.

Apple Cider Recommended Dosage for Poultry

Apple Cider Vinegar is an age old product beloved by many traditional chicken keepers to promote all round health and vitality in poultry (and many other animals). Many swear by it as a cure-all and to keep your hens free from worms, disease and as a natural organic, anti-bacterial, anti-coccidial tonic. Add a measure to drinking water (do not use in galvanised drinkers of course) all year round.As a guide we suggest 10ml of Apple Cider Vinegar per litre of fresh water – be careful not to add to much as it may stop the hens drinking which would be a problem.Can also be used to treat minor wounds and skin irritations (at a dose of no more than 1 part to 10), to clean feeding and drinking equipment and if often sprayed into and around housing as a very effective fly and insect deterrent.

I’m particularly interested in the next few years to see how your low chill fruits do grown organically. I would love to plant low chill varieties at our church garden and in my own garden (and maybe our community garden) – Glynis

We’ve been growing lo chill fruits for years now (15 years to be exact) and they are doing quite well. This year we are expanding our low chill dwarf fruit varieties to include a few more of our favorites.

Howdy, do you grow indeterminate tomatoes? If so, do you train them to a single vine? Thanks – Doug

Yes, we do have have grown indeterminate tomatoes for as long as I can remember. We take a more natural approach and let them grow as they please.

So adorable! I’d love to raise 1-2 pygmies, but despite my location in the far corner of my rural neighborhood, the property managers object because of “smell” and “flies”? Do you have any suggestions for persuading them differently? – Susan

Yes, goats are indeed cute and practical. But it’s good to know the all the facts about goats before you are tempted by their sweet little faces. Jordanne spent months researching and reading about goat habits. Goats are herd animals so they will not be happy by themselves. In fact folks (responsible goat breeders that is) here won’t sell you a goat unless you can prove that you have or will provide it with a companion.

It you want to train a goat, it’s best to get them at an early age. Sometimes if you get an older goat they may have picked up bad habits and since goats can be very destructive (and stubborn) left to themselves you want a goat that is sweet tempered and easily trained. In fact, goats are just like having a two year old kid. They are curious and always getting into things. Jordanne has trained our two goats to obey six commands.

Goats have a bad repetition of being smelling and that’s primarily the bucks fault. Male goats do have an odor about them, while females (if kept in proper, clean conditions) are practically odor free. Ours smell of hay and sunshine.

Goat’s manure is like a rabbits. And since a goat’s diet is comprised of grains and greens. If you ask me less prone to flies than that of a meat eating dog.

If you plan to keep goats for milk, they have to be bred and that means goats will go into heat in the fall/winter. If you are interested in a female goat, make sure to ask about their heat — is it a “silent one” or does she go “all out hormonal” Goats in heat are quite loud so you have to be certain you aren’t getting one of excessive hormonal temperament.

Read more about goats from another of our GOAT FAQ journal post. Also, I know there’s another post where we address more about goats but I am having a hard time locating it. Our journal does so need categories (and we are working on fixing that!)

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  1. Ruthie says:

    I just wanted to thank you guys for doing such an excellent job and being so unbelievable inspirational. My husband and I are settling in Houston after our two year stint here in Montana and I am planning on gardening as much of the yard as I can. There is a huge urban gardening community there (urbanharvest.org), but I think I would have never become interested if I hadn’t found you guys a few years ago (back when you still had the patio). I am reading all of the journal archives (I’m up to Aug 07) and am already finding myself cooking simpler meals unplugging, and reading more by oil lamp once the sun goes down. I think I am a bit like Anais, knitter, cook, and reader. I loved the picture of her in the fry pan as a baby. Her method of cooking reminds me a bit of the Nearings, simple food, fresh from the garden, simply prepared, but good enough to nourish and keep farm hands happy.

    Keep on doing what you’re doing. I hope your site remains free, as we are among the “low income” that visit here, but we will try to donate when we can.

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