Growing fodder for chickens

ChickensRDinos

Songster
7 Years
Aug 19, 2012
2,242
233
208
Los Angeles
Thank you! I am a city girl born and raised who really wants to be a farmer someday. But, I am getting sick of thinking "well someday..." so I'm just gonna work with what I got which is about 400 square feet of yard, a long concrete driveway lined with pots and trelesses and an extra bedroom. Chickens for now but big dreams of turkeys and goats at the next house. lol. I'm not sure how far I can realistically get with this little space but I'm taking it as a personal challenge.
 

pawtraitart

Songster
12 Years
May 30, 2007
1,725
256
231
Idaho
I tried oats in my Fodder system and had a HORRIBLE experience. Poor sprouting, dirty water, and lots of slime. Funny, because it sprouted right up when I threw it in the worm bin..... I found feed wheat and it's been a dream. I have mine all automated with recycled water (I'm a lazy homesteader). I started my fodder system to feed the critters I want to have on my urban homestead (some rabbits, a few chickens, and a couple of mini goats). It's turned into sort of a little business since a lot of my friends wanted one..



Here's the finished Fodder (6 days):

NICE!!!
 

melwynnd

Songster
7 Years
Sep 21, 2012
42
56
112
West Plains, MO
Thanks! This is what I initially wanted it for:



Think of all the lovely, creamy milk I will have to make cheese with!


But a tray is actually enough for all the critters I want. So yummy meat, lovely yellow eggs, and fresh cheese year round. Pretty hard to beat for $40 a ton, which is what I calculated the wheat Fodder costs me.

Seeing as how crappy hay is over 300 a ton here...............

Sherry
 

Daloorashens

Songster
7 Years
Apr 26, 2012
2,196
33
168
Idaho
I tried oats in my Fodder system and had a HORRIBLE experience. Poor sprouting, dirty water, and lots of slime. Funny, because it sprouted right up when I threw it in the worm bin..... I found feed wheat and it's been a dream. I have mine all automated with recycled water (I'm a lazy homesteader). I started my fodder system to feed the critters I want to have on my urban homestead (some rabbits, a few chickens, and a couple of mini goats). It's turned into sort of a little business since a lot of my friends wanted one..



Here's the finished Fodder (6 days):

Ok, that is awesome.. very cool idea to rotate the water, is that a pump down on the floor to be able to do that?? Very cool...
 

Daloorashens

Songster
7 Years
Apr 26, 2012
2,196
33
168
Idaho
I have some trays, but they are small, could I use the trays they use at the nursery's to put the 4-pack flowers in, you know the big black ones, and line the bottom with some plastic that had holes cut in?? would that keep too much water in?
 

pawtraitart

Songster
12 Years
May 30, 2007
1,725
256
231
Idaho

melwynnd

Songster
7 Years
Sep 21, 2012
42
56
112
West Plains, MO
Yep, that's an aquaponics pump down in the tote. I was hoping to do an aquaponic setup with this, but the grain puts too much starch in the water. I change out the water every 3-4 days when the system is in full production. It's on a timer and pumps water for 15 min every two hours. The water flows into the top tray and trickles down into the trays below. The real trick was to get the drainage holes in the trays just right so the water would run out too fast, but that it would drain completely between cycles.

I use the heavy duty black greenhouse flats. They're 11x22 and I get about 12 pounds of Fodder from each one.

I do sell the plans for this system and for a 12 tray one from my webite. www.half-pinthomestead.com There are some pretty good pictures of the daily growth stages too. I use wheat as barley isn't available here and oats just didn't work at all.

It's real easy to build. I just keep mine in the living room.... sort of like a giant water fountain. The cat likes to pull out the grasses because they "squeak".

 

Daloorashens

Songster
7 Years
Apr 26, 2012
2,196
33
168
Idaho
Flats aren't very expensive if you want to buy new ones. I got mine here: http://homeharvest.com/propagationflatsdomesinserts.htm
Super, thanks Michelle!!

Yep, that's an aquaponics pump down in the tote. I was hoping to do an aquaponic setup with this, but the grain puts too much starch in the water. I change out the water every 3-4 days when the system is in full production. It's on a timer and pumps water for 15 min every two hours. The water flows into the top tray and trickles down into the trays below. The real trick was to get the drainage holes in the trays just right so the water would run out too fast, but that it would drain completely between cycles.

I use the heavy duty black greenhouse flats. They're 11x22 and I get about 12 pounds of Fodder from each one.

I do sell the plans for this system and for a 12 tray one from my webite. www.half-pinthomestead.com There are some pretty good pictures of the daily growth stages too. I use wheat as barley isn't available here and oats just didn't work at all.

It's real easy to build. I just keep mine in the living room.... sort of like a giant water fountain. The cat likes to pull out the grasses because they "squeak".

Haha, silly kitty! I will check out your website, too=)
 

QuartzRidgeRanch

In the Brooder
8 Years
Dec 11, 2011
16
17
34
Georgetown, CA
We have finally got our fodder system up and running. It is working great but we still have some things we need to add like a heater for winter, a a/c unit for summer and an auto-water system. We originally were looking at the Fodder Trailers but we could not justify the price on something we could build ourselves.

If you want to check ours out visit our blog at Quartz Ridge Ranch


 
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