Food foragings from our recent walk

Blackberry approves

When raising animals in the city, especially the four legged kind, one has to rely on outside sources for certain feed (no back forty of hay here in LA).   And feed stores in the city can  be few and far between.

You know that scene  from the Good Neighbors where Barbara Good brings back the goat from grazing on the commons?

Well, lucky for us, the urban homestead is located near a “wild commons” of sorts.  The beautiful lower Arroyo Seco  where, on our weekly walks, we can easily forage for food for our goatsies and even hens (they love the wild elderberries and currants) .

Foraging for food certainly saves on feed costs!   When the cost of food is rising and money is tight, it’s frugal and economical to forage for free food.

What do our goatsies like?

Oak leaves
Wild Buckwheat

Take Care: always check area for anything unusual or signs of human activity,  beware of sprayed areas, patches of poison oak and ivy,  don’t over-pick, harvest with care (like it was your own garden),  and last but not least make sure to not harvest poisonous plants.  Here’s a handy list to use


  1. Michael says:

    My chickens love to forage however a hawk was foraging also and made a meal of one of my chickens so now I have to be outside when I let them out to find a yummy treat. I just picked up 2 more buff orbingtons great layers today they are 4 days old broght them home in a paper bag & called the girls into the kitchen & asked them to go over to the table & bring me that bag. When they heard the chirping they were so exited because they knew what was in the bag. We had so much fun raising the other 3 that we have & I love to bring that exitment into my home. The people who buy there eggs at the grocery don’t know what they are missing out on.

  2. Ginger says:

    I like buckwheat, too. Am I part goat?

    • Anais says:

      @Ginger: LOL 😉

  3. Rhonda says:

    I always love it when you have photos of your goats. They are just the sweetest things. My dream is to get more space so we can have some chickens, rabbits and goats. Not to eat, but have a symbiosis like you have. I’ll give them love and they’ll give me eggs and fertilizer. 🙂 Take care!!

  4. Gwynn says:

    We have 3/4 of a suburban acre on the edge of a small city. We bought chickens last year and I am converting the weed patch to food garden. I fell in love with Dwarf Nigerian dairy goats and will be picking up our first ones tomorrow. I was thinking I must be crazy trying to squeeze all this in on such a small yard. I am so glad I found your websites today. You have not only done it, but in much less space even! Incredible inspiration. Beautiful photos. Love seeing the garden and, of course, the adorable “goatsies”. Blessings, Gwynn

    • Anais says:

      @Gwynn: Thanks for sharing your journey with us, our family wishes you all the best and much success. Blessings!

  5. Ibce says:

    I’m still far from even a beginner, but aren’t oak leaves poisonous?

    • Jordanne says:

      It depends on who you ask. Generally, on most lists, Oak leaves are listed as poisonous. However our goats have been eating Oaks for many years now and love them. Someone once told me that it was Scarlet Oaks that were poisonous, but I really don’t know where her info came from, so it may or may not be credible. It’s known that tannins really can be toxic; but apparently it just depends on the amount consumed and who is doing the consuming. According to some intial research it seems that tannins are not a problem with goats (or deer) because the protein in their saliva binds the tannin, making tannin-rich forage safe to eat. Anyhow, a lot of people use Oak leaves for deworming.

  6. Karrie says:

    Hi! We have chickens for eggs and meat, turkeys, bees, a garden and more on about 1/2 an acre and milk goats are next on the list. We had two pygmies as pets for about 12 years and recently lost our last one. Now I am ready for some milk goats! I am really trying to find more information about using store- bought feed as more of a supplement rather than a main food source. I’m wondering how much the foraging has cut down your animal feed costs and how do you know what kinds of ratios to give them to make sure they are getting enough protein, calcium, etc?
    We have a large empty lot nearby with lots of weeds, grasses, eucalyptus, and some other shrubs so I can definitely use this as a source- I’m just not sure how much to feed. Thanks!


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