Anti Peta
Basic Plan
So Far

January 2006

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Saturday, January 28th

The steers

Well we had a change in plans. Chuck went to auction instead of T-Bone. Mostly because we were informed that buyers prefer animals without horns.
Chuck weighed in at 1105 pounds and brought 77.5 cents/pound. A nice chunk of change!

We have a few hundred pounds of corn left and then T will be headed towards one of the local meat lockers.
And we have a pig at the neighbors that will be headed there next week.

We got our Murry MacMurray catalog and one from Sunnyside Hatcheries yesterday. Tammy is leaning towards getting some ducks and geese this year along with the chickens.
We would have to provide some sort of water for them to splash around in but they would be interesting to have around.
I would like to try some silver laced wyandottes this year for our layers and maybe get a few of the more rarer breeds to spice things up.
We would like to see about getting Christopher involved in 4-H and think chickens would be a great project for him.
sammyd on 01.28.06 @ 07:38 AM CST [link]

Monday, January 23rd

Well after consulting an expert (my Dad) I may have to alter my starting bench and get more lights. He did say that regular flourescents will work as well as grow lights so I won't have to shell out the big bucks as I have a 4' 4 light fixture around somewhere.

I have found a great seed catalog that has stuff for self supporters.
R. H. Shumway http://www.rhshumway.com/ I found mangels and lots of other good stuff in there.
Otherwise everything else I could find on the web was in England.

I also discussed storage of roots with my Dad and he figures a good insulated clamp will work for the fodder crops as that was how they did it when he was a boy. So I will have to find a good supplier of cheap small square bales.

Lots of planning to do for the big spring push. I don't hope to do everything this year but I would like to do quite a bit and see how things work out.
The best source I have is John Seymours book but I think our climate is a bit different that Irelands.
And although he does talk a bit about colder climates I think I will have a learning curve to work through before I can come up with a system that will work well in Wisconsin.
sammyd on 01.23.06 @ 08:43 AM CST [link]

Tuesday, January 17th


Spent what time off I had this weekend getting the starting bench ready for planting. It's 2' deep by 8' wide with 2 4' grow lights over it.
It has shelves underneath to hold some bulbs we bought this fall that wanted to sprout out in the bright light on the porch.
I also spent some time comparing prices in the seed catalogs.
I can't wait for spring.

We are planning on putting in a couple of cherry trees, some different apples, and maybe a plum or two.
Tammy is also looking really hard at a hardy peach tree. It's borderline zone4/5 and we're pretty much 4 but who knows.

sammyd on 01.17.06 @ 12:44 AM CST [link]

Thursday, January 12th

the garden

Well the seed companies are at it again. Tempting me with their pictures of beautiful plants and plentiful harvests.

THere are still a couple of months left till I can even start anything under lights in the basement but the fever is starting to take hold. I have to get my shelves built and the grow lights mounted but that shouldn't take too much time.
I plan on making room for at least 16 full size trays of plants and maybe a some milk jug bottoms.
I want to get the squash and melons started as well as some pickles. And what ever else strikes my fancy as I get started.
The chickens sure enjoy an ocasional pumpkin dureing the winter months so I have to get a couple of those going as well.

Good thing we got a rear tine tiller last year there's lots of garden to work up.

sammyd on 01.12.06 @ 01:25 PM CST [link]

Monday, January 9th

Hamburgers on the hoof

These are my 2 steers T-Bone and Chuck Roast.
We named them that to remind us their purpose here and so that we remember not to get too attached.
They are big sweeties though and it will be a sad day when they go to fulfill their purpose.
I bought them as 3 day old calves for $75 each and used an elasticator to neuter them.
Chuck was dehorned by the neighbor who raises beef but T-Bone didn't even have buttons yet so he didn't get that treatment. His horns started last spring and I decided to just let them be.
We will be butchering Chuck and selling T. Beef prices are pretty good and he should pay for most of the feed we bought as they pastured both summers and this winter are on a shell corn diet.. at $100 a ton it's not too bad feeding them.
sammyd on 01.09.06 @ 04:37 PM CST [link]


Here are my browns outside their coop.
I transformed a tool shed that had all ready done duty as the steer calf barn into a snug little coop for the girls. It's well insulated and I haven't had any problems with water freeze up yet this winter.
I started with 30 but we lost one to a predator when they first started going outside and I sold 5 to a buddy at work. The 24 we have left lay about an egg a day and the wife sells them at work. They pay for their own food and provide us with a sense of accomplishment.
Gotta love them chickens smile
sammyd on 01.09.06 @ 04:26 PM CST [link]

More chicks

Here are the girls under their brooder.
I started out with 100 CornishxRock hens and bought 30 Heavy Brown hens from a buddy.
As chicks they fit Ok in this small coop but they were glad later as I built their pen outside.
I bought all hens because the cornish will get big no matter the sex and I originally only had plans for them.
I was going to butcher 75 and keep 25 for laying.
A week after I got them in my buddy bought over 1000 heavy brown hens and I decided to buy 30 from him and butcher all the cornish.
This turned out to be a better plan as the cornish really eat and the few we kept longer weren't laying even though the browns were.
Next year I plan on custom raising the cornish for people who want farm fresh chicken. We'll see if that will provide a little income.
I butchered most of the cornish at 8 lbs and kept a few up to 10 or 12 for turkey replacements. They were a hit at Thanksgiving and Christmas.
sammyd on 01.09.06 @ 04:18 PM CST [link]

A few things to start with

This is a pic of the brooder coop I made last summer. About 8'x8' with a 4'x4' brooder in it.
I started with one heat lamp but we had a few cold nights in June so I added provisions for 2 more lamps.
It worked well and a lot of the stuff I used to make the brooder were in the bargain bins at local home improvement stores.
sammyd on 01.09.06 @ 04:06 PM CST [link]

Just starting out

Welcome to my blog. LOL must be a gazillion opening lines like that razz .
Anyway, I started this thing to chronicle my move towards self-sufficiency.
Not sure how it will go or if I'll keep it up but it may be worth a shot to help others out and maybe receive feedback on stuff I am doing.
sammyd on 01.09.06 @ 03:43 PM CST [more..]