Tag Archives: Fodder System

Fodder fail: Another lesson learned

I hate to refer to any of my experiments or projects that don’t go as I expected as failures. In my mind a failure you didn’t accomplish anything. Quite the contrary I believe. Because I have a science background and use the scientific method for everything there is a hypothesis, experiment, and conclusion.

I had a hypothesis. Could I make stacking fodder system that would save space and use vertical space rather than horizontal?

Experiment design, I used recycle ice cream buckets for my fodder beds. I cut recycled PVC pipes to use as risers for the fodder, give an air gap, increase airflow, and still allow one bed to drain into the other. Drilled holes in the bottom to allow the water to drain. I could water the top one and it in theory flow all the way through. Each day I would add a new stack container of soaked seeds to the bottom. By day seven, the top container would always be ready to feed to the animals, just soak and add new seeds to the bottom each day. Boom, done.

DSC_1223

What a stack could look like

 

DSC_1225

Here is what I learned. A, never leave your experiment unattended when there is a 2 YO who wants to help. 20lbs of seed all got soaked at once. Here I wrote about that day. B, there is not enough airflow moving around the seeds, and mold will develop. C, stacking will allow watering the top, and draining all the way to the bottom. D, the next experiment will involve suspending the buckets rather than stacking. I should still be able to water one spot, save horizontal floor space, and increase the airflow to the seeds.

What the top looked like
DSC_1238

This is the second layer

DSC_1239

Third layer

DSC_1240

I have come to realize that there is much more learning involved with doing than talking about it, talking about it on forums, and YouTube. More people should get out there and start doing, learning, and stop fearing failure. THERE IS NO FAILURE, only a lesson on what didn’t work. To not learn from experiments, trials, mistakes, then that is a failure, because you failed to learn anything, and gave up.

My next experiments:

No. 1: Will hanging the grow beds give more air circulation and prevent mold growth using the current ice cream buckets?
No. 2: When soaking wheatgrass fodder, what is the optimal time soaking vs. fastest germination. I have read and heard, various times. I have heard 30 min, 12 hr 24 hr and varying results with each. I plan on soaking for 30 min, 1 hr, 3 hr, 6hr, 12hr and 24hr.

Advertisements

Fodder system

I started my fodder system last night allowing my seeds to soak. I am using wheatgrass. I have pictures and video of the system (nice stacking system for space saving), cost me only the price of the grain $18/50lbs of wheatgrass.

DSC_1220

While I am outside, my youngest decided to “help” and poured 15 lbs of seeds into my 5 gal bucket of water. Well I could either throw all the extra away OR have a massive amount of fodder ready at the same time. I chose the 2nd part. I will feed some to the birds early, some when ready, and let it go longer.

In short, I will NOT have pictures and video of what it is SUPPOSED to look like for another 15 days.  What I wanted to show was each phase how it would be rotated and stacked to maximize yield in a small space. Once I run through this batch I will start over and demo the way I wanted, until I had helper monkey put her hands into it.

Until then, check out another way to make your own fodder system outside. This is From jack Spirko from The Survival Podcast.

http://brinkoffreedom.net/homesteading/dead-simple-fodder-system/

Here are some pics of the seeds I am starting inside. I have a post and video of it too in time. Getting an early start this year. Again, had to moves these up 5 feet off the ground, because the 2 year old found the broccoli and ate all the sprouts.

IMG_0883