How Pigs Can Be Excellent Rototillers
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How Pigs Can Be Excellent Rototillers

Contrary to popular belief, pigs are some of the cleanest animals on the planet.  With intelligence superior to that of most dogs, the average pig can learn tricks, commands, routines, and even bad habits (if left to their own devices) at an alarming rate.  They can use strategy, use team work, and become very attached to those they have regular contact with.

A little known fact, pigs are extremely easy keepers.  With an uncanny ability and habit of eating just about anything you put in front of them, pigs are very efficient at devouring whatever is fed to them, but also finding food on their own if need be.  A pig has an extremely keen sense of smell and, while their eyesight is less than sufficient, even if you are approaching down wind, they will smell you long before they will see you.  For this reason pigs make excellent rototillers as they will smell even the smallest of roots, trash, compost, etc deep in the soil and proceed to turn the soil until the food item is found and quickly disposed of.

Thus begins a wonderful and prosperous cycle that benefits every living thing involved.  Ideally you want to have two separate pens.  The first one is a spot that maybe you'd like to start a garden in.  You purchase a wiener (40 pounds or less) piglet and put it in the first pen.  With in a few hours/days (depending on the size of the pen) you will notice the entire pen has a newly cultivated appearance complete with manure deposits and churned soil.  You will want to remove the pig and place it in pen two when you are ready to begin planting your garden.

You can use this method several times if desired and since various crops are planted at different times of the year, you can conveniently rotate your pig(s) to meet your rototilling needs.  In the end you'll have some of the tastiest home grown pork - free of chemicals, drugs etc, and some of the healthiest, maintenance free soil in your town.  You'll be able to grow vegetables without the use of harmful pesticides, fertilizers and growth stimulants.

And when the crop has been harvested, there's no need for pulling out those old dead plants, simply leave them where they are, turn out your next pig and they'll make quick work of uprooting and completely disposing of the old stems, plants, roots etc leaving the soil readily tilled and cultivated for next years crop.

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Comments (2)
Episode 1: Martha the Discoverer « avocadoknits

[...] local organic farm is The Learning Farm at Prairie Crossing. Pigs and rototilling? Check it out. Using pigs to till ground is an excellent example of permaculture principles: the output of the [...]

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