Chicken food

I gave up hope of growing brassica this season and converted into caterpillar farming for the chooks lol. You gotta be positive in this life.
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  • Anyone grow cow peas to feed to the chickens  as they correct variety can be grown during hot months and do not need fertilizer or lots of water.

  • I suspect I have no invasions. The brassicas I grow are doing fine. I don't do cabbage or broccoli. And my bokchoi and Couve Tronchuda (Portuguese Cabbage) are firing away. It could be species selection as I did find that if you grow a range of kales only a few types are eaten.

    But I densely plant, polyculture the beds and make sure I separate species plantings geographically. It could also be the strategically located Vetiver clumps which have a reputed push/pull effect on some insects.

    Not much in the way of  snails either because the jungle is too dense for easy transit.  The growth also wards off cane toads as hopping around for dinner  is discouraged for the same reason.

    Or maybe it is just luck?

    I have -- at present -- five ponds that service frogs. Green tree frog numbers have exploded this last year. When the Vetiver is in nursery production stage,  there will be more 'ponds' because we grow the grass on in shallow water.

    I gave up on the fish option -- primarily because of the chlorination factor -- and rely on duckweed/Azola to dampen down mosquito enthusiasm. I have three micro-bat houses but none have been  occupied  -- and they have been vacant for 4 years. 

    Since we are also a location for a mosaics club we collect a lot of china and I make a point of hanging or resting cups and pipes around the place so that Green Tree Frogs can be homely and resident. Then there are the skinks -- so often taken for granted and un-noticed -- but they are sure to eat eggs and larvae of insect nasties. With them I like leaving wee rocks or bits of log in the garden beds so they too can find a home.

    And mulch! Mulch is so  benevolent critter friendly.

    When I recently laid out Peruvian Apple Cactus cuttings down as mulch, the skinks have gone crazy with activity because they have a new world to discover under and between the stems laying ontop of  the soil.The side of the cut cactus stems facing the sun are also great for sunbathing.

  • I have used BT in the past when I was growing organic veges for restaurants.  It worked well although I had very few problems with caterpillars.  My theory is that "pest" insects only attack plants that are not growing maximally, therefore removing them from reproducing.  I have always sought to create a very rich growing soil, rich in compost and micro-organisms.  As a result insect damage is almost non-existent.

  • have you ever tried BT?  it works and is organic

  • My Quails also get a regular supply of the little fat green grubs.

  • I do my little round every morning while the chooks eagerly await. 

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