millet as a feed

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Sheila, Dec 5, 2009.

  1. Sheila

    Sheila Out Of The Brooder

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    Want to experiment with growing millet as a step in raising more of the hens' food. We feed organic grain and organic (from the garden vegetables in season), but I know it might be hard to find organic grain for planting.

    I'd be satisfied knowing the seed was not GMO, but I can't seem to find it. Just looking for plain old millet, nothing fancy.

    Anybody know of a source?

    Thanks,
    Sheila
     
  2. StupidBird

    StupidBird Chillin' With My Peeps

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    www.seedsofchange.com shows two types in various sized packing, certified organic! They have lots of interesting grains.
     
  3. Sheila

    Sheila Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks. I hadn't thought of them. Johnny's has a Japanese millet, says that it is deep-rooted, grows tall, has to be plowed in. Tiller will only work with smaller plants. I've had no experience with millet. Anyone? Do all varieties grow deep?

    I want to be able to save some seeds. Did that this hear with organic sunflowers and a bunch of vegetables.

    I have used Seeds of Change vegetable seeds and honestly didn't have very good luck with them. Other brands have been better. Maybe they've improved.
     
  4. StupidBird

    StupidBird Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have to admit, I found the assortment of grains interesting. But I haven't ever ordered or planted any; I'm still trying to get the usual stuff to grow reliably. What other brands have you been successful with and what do you find the easiest to grow chicken fodder? I've left kohlrabi that over grew to keep supplying greens along with too-tattered to eat leaves of collards, chard and the like. I'm also tossing in chickweed and henbit in their coop instead of relentlessly eradicating it (ok, that's a bit much, I don't weed that well).
     
  5. 3goodeggs

    3goodeggs pays attention sporadically

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    I just let some of the four grain scratch mix germinate and grow.
     
    1 person likes this.
  6. Bear Foot Farm

    Bear Foot Farm Overrun With Chickens

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    Cheap bird seed is often mostly millet.
    It's a "warm season " crop though, so it cant be planted until late Spring
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2009
  7. duckncover

    duckncover Duck Obsessed

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    I buy millet spray for my cockatiels at the pet store? They all have it but I didn't think a chicken would pick at such small seeds. If we are speaking of this kind of millet should I try to feed it to them?
    [​IMG]

    ^^^^^^^^^^
    It looks like this
     
  8. Bear Foot Farm

    Bear Foot Farm Overrun With Chickens

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    The sprays are probably Foxtail Millet.

    There are LOTS of varieties of millet, and chickens will eat them all
    If you buy millet to feed them, make sure to check the labels.
    Millet sold as "seed" is often treated with fungicides, and should NOT be used as feed
     
  9. Plain Old Dee

    Plain Old Dee Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I guess my girls are just plain picky. They waste most of the scratch mix, so I quit buying it. They would eat the corn and sunflower seeds out of it, but wouldn't touch the millet. Now I just buy a bag of chopped corn and a bag of oats. I don't feed much corn to the chickens - just a handfull, and a couple of handsfull of oats, plus a handful of alfalfa pellets. The eat it all and are happy. I can feed the corn and oats to the horses and goats, (again, easy on the corn) so I can buy less specialized feed.
     
  10. Sheila

    Sheila Out Of The Brooder

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    I hope the chickens will eat the millet if I plant it. If they get hungry enough? It is more nutritious than corn, or so I've read. Thinking close to an acre. What grains are in the four-grain scratch?

    My deal is that we only feed organic, and in order to make a little profit, we are going to have to grow some of their feed. This breaking even not counting labor is getting old. We live in an area where there are many people selling eggs, but no one else is feeding organic only/true free range. We have 43 layers and 5 roos. We want to go bigger.

    Am also thinking of growing pole beans for them, grinding them in fall. Probably scarlet runner, since I saved a lot of them, and they are huge. Figure that's a lot of protein to supplement the organic feed, which contains a lot of soy.

    They had their first snow today and tried to eat the little balls (not flakes) that first fell. Maybe they'll eat millet.

    I also feed quite a lot from the garden. They got the broccoli and Brussels sprouts plants last week, and all the usual leaves not quite fit for human consumption. I notice that with the snow cover, they ate a lot more grain inside today. This is where it gets expensive.

    As for seed companies, I use FEDCO and Johnny's (both in Maine), and Seed Savers Exchange mostly. I need to get my orders in soon. Did place the potato/onion/shallot order, as the organic potatoes ran out before mid-Jan last year. Try FEDCO for best prices.
     

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