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Chicken Thistle Farm CoopCast Profile

Chicken Thistle Farm CoopCast

English, Agriculture, 2 seasons, 166 episodes, 5 days, 16 hours
Sharing our small farm stories and skills along our farming, gardening and homesteading journey. Visit the farm for an informative and sometimes irreverent tour through our garden, livestock pastures, chicken coop and greenhouse as we live - pasture to plate. Farming topics free range around pastured heritage pigs, broiler chickens and pastured eggs, heritage breed turkeys, an heirloom vegetable CSA and garden, high tunnel / hoop house / green houses, organic and traditional gardening, farm infrastructure, tractors, sustainable energy, being self sufficient, permaculture, food preservation and even fence mending.
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CoopCast 0163 - A reflection on the year & Auld Lang Syne

As the year draws to a close, we share some thoughts about life that has transpired since our last episode on March 31st... Farming has been a lot of fun and a lot of hard work.  We have shared some of our highest highs and lowest lows as a result of our farming endeavours. We hope we have cultivated some ideas and new farmers and look forward to the unknowns a offers!
12/31/20161 hour, 4 minutes, 14 seconds
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0162 Bees in Maryland, Bacon Genetic Engineering and Batman v Superman

The fine legslative geniuses in MD keep the bees safe -  Soon your bacon will be genetically engineered -  And we review the piece of movie garbage known as Batman vs Superman
3/31/201647 minutes, 12 seconds
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0161 Spring updates, beehives and a conversation about raw milk

Want to get people fired up and yelling for no reason - mention raw milk...  which we did and this episode dissects the fun that follows. But before we got to that conversation we talked about spring planting plans and the beehives!
3/17/201653 minutes, 12 seconds
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0160 Hoophouse construction, winter bees and garden planning

This episode is mostly listener questions that we answer about our hoop house, construction methods, and gardening inside the hoop house.  We also touch on garden planning and winter beekeeping. Hoop house hoop bender - Hoophouse book -   
2/18/201641 minutes, 22 seconds
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0159 Farm meeting recap (plans for the 2016 farming season)

This entire episode is dedicated to the 2016 Farm Meeting where we discuss the vegetable gardens, seeds, chickens, pigs, ducks and all things farm related.  After deciding we were going to cut back on the farm in 2016 this meeting helped us put it all into perspective in terms of what we are and are not going to be doing. CHeck us out on social media to join in the conversation -, @chickenthistle on Twitter...Or - follow Farmer Andy @farmerandyman on Twitter and Instagram!
1/21/20161 hour, 1 minute, 5 seconds
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0158 Vegetable seed order, country of origin of meat and Star Wars

From the farm this week we share a few updates (but it's a slow season for a slower year).  We also discuss our seed order, country of origin labeling of meats (WHO), beekeeping and review Star Wars Links that matter include :  We ordered from Burpee Seed - no special link or promocode...  but if you DO order from them - tell them you heard about them on our show - we put our name in the link to maybe get some attention from their web people!!! (at this time looks like new visits get 20% off!) Forbes (Teeve Torbs) link about the change in country of origin labeling of imported meats Local Harvest: Kelli's StichFix signup link - do it - she appreciates it!
1/7/201652 minutes, 12 seconds
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0157 Farm updates, listener questions and a few of our favorite things

This episode is the last broadcast for 2015.  So Merry Christmas everyone! We talk a bit about update around the farm and how it's a bit strange to not have so much "farm" to worry about.  We also answer some Facebook listener questions about the trees we planted, the fields, the berry patch and other things left unsaid around the farm. Then we conclude with a mention of a few of our favorite things - things for the farm, things in our personal life and favorite wines and spirits. Farmer Kelli's list includes offering this signup referral to any and all listeners who want to try out her new favorite service - 
12/18/201550 minutes, 4 seconds
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0156 Pork cuts, a deer season story and a Farm U on E. coli O157:H7

After the Thanksgiving turkey wore off we decided to get back to the farming podcast...  and we talk about the most recent pork cuts we picked up.  We then talk about some of the food we made for Thanksgiving and deer season and Farmer Andy shares the Thanksgiving morning story of his big buck! We wrap up the episode with Farm U on E. coli O157:H7, what it is, where it comes from and Dr. Farmer Kelli shares a resource ( to learn more about infectious diseases and foodborne diseases.
12/4/201543 minutes, 11 seconds
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0155 Pigs to the processor, deer season updates and vegetable garden tomato roundup

This episode we talk about the taking of the pigs to the processor, some updates from around the farm and about deer season... and the highly anticipated tomato round up from the vegetable garden.
11/20/201545 minutes, 13 seconds
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0154 Processing a pig and people's feelings, bow season, bees and honey

After posting that we were taking a pig to the processor and hurting some folks feelings...  we decided we didn't really care.  Toughen up folks.  So we make fun of them. Then we talk about the deer season to date and update people on the honey harvest from our first year of bees. In general - it's a bunch of farm updates.
11/5/201541 minutes, 42 seconds
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0153 Farm updates, sugar addiction and bowhunting tips

We return with pig, chicken, bee and vegetable garden updates.  We then talk a bit about a discovery about the stiffness of your arrow and the placement of a broadhead shot (yeah - giggle if you want) as it pertains to archery / bowhunting.  And the nwe conclude with some listener emails and a discussion about a sugar free diet.
9/23/201549 minutes, 22 seconds
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0152 Farming updates from pasture and vegetable garden

In this episode we just shae some udpates and clarification about the fate and future of the farm.  We also talk a bit about some of the veggies we discovered still thriving in the gardens.
9/2/201533 minutes, 48 seconds
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0151 A Return to the Farm and a discussion about the future

In this episode we return to the coopcast to discuss the future of our farm and all the different enterprises we have in play.  
8/19/201539 minutes, 46 seconds
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0150 The passing of Watson and the future of the farm

In the first ever solo recorded Coopcast Farmer Andy shares the events of the last month that have put our farm and future plans on hold.  This is a candid and honest monologue about where we are and what decisions we have ahead about the farm.
7/28/201526 minutes, 41 seconds
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0149 Pig castration and boar taint, pastured chickens and vegetable garden farm !updates

Since we are in the busy time of year it's just another update show around the farm! We talk about the process and the reasons why we castrate our piglets.  We also share the history of why we are so sure to do the castrations when we do them.  Then we talk about the pastured chickens, the egg layers and the vegetable gardens.  We wrap up with the latest beekeeping / bee swarm update.
6/24/201543 minutes, 11 seconds
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0148 SPROUTCAST (short) On the road talking about pig farrowing

This weeks episode is a short "SPROUTCAST" where we just tell the story of pig farrowing and the outcome of pigs on the farm this year.  It's recorded in the truck - but even lor fidelity is better than nofidelity, right?
6/18/201521 minutes, 20 seconds
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0147 Capturing a honeybee swarm, annoying broiler chickens and a pre-farrowing pig

This week we walk arounf the farm and update you on all the things going on. We captured a wild honeybee swarm and talk about what the process was and how we managed things.  We discuss the Cornish Cross chickens that are not being liek regualr chickens of past years. Then we talk a bit about the pig we are expecting to farrow any day now.  Then we finish up in the vegetable garden discussing some of what's been going on there! Busy time of year and a lot going on.
6/10/201548 minutes, 22 seconds
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0146 Gardening, pig, chicken and beekeeping updates from the farm

This episode sorta wanders all over in terms of updates.  Farmer Andy started a new way of eating and by cutting sugar out of his diet he's found a whole new way to live life.  We discuss some of our favorite wines (from boxes) and other cocktails...  then we move into the farm updates.  We talk about the chickens (broilers and layers), a exciting night with a critter in the coop, the pig getting ready to farrow, the greenhouse, beekeeping and more. It's a lot of updates - but we have a log of farming activites to update you about!
6/3/201553 minutes, 27 seconds
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0145 Early chickens, planting the garden and other updates

I this episode we talk about where we have been the last 2 weeks and why we haven't coopcasted.  We share the story of the chickens arriving early this year and their bad attitudes.  We talk about the moved pig, planting the vegetable garden and what's going on in the greenhouse (like fresh strawberries).
5/28/201528 minutes, 23 seconds
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0144 Beekeeping update, planting trees and vegetables for the garden

After getting our new beehive we have checked in on their progress and the hive is growing quickly.  We update everyone on the status and happening in the hive.  We then talk about the trees we have been planting as well as the early spring gardening efforts.  The potatoes are in, the peas and asparagus is up and the greenhouse is full.  Tune in to hear all the latest updates!
5/7/201534 minutes, 15 seconds
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0143 SPROUTCAST (short) On the road to pickup bees, gardening update, farms using out cutsheet

This is the first low qulaity audo episode we have produced as we were driving in the truck to pickup our beehive and still wanted to produce an episode.  So we talk a little about bees, the seedlings for the vegetable garden and the animals. It's 15 minutes of free content recorded ina truck - it's gotta be great!
4/29/201515 minutes, 26 seconds
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0142 Fire on the farm, tractor talk and pregnant pig updates

This weeks episode tells the story of the Great Hedgerow Fire of 2015...  but it wasn't that great.   We then just field a bunch of listener questions from a Periscope session! Questions range from pig updates to tractors to beekeeping... Ohh - and you can leave us a voicemail now too for the podcast! :)
4/22/201549 minutes
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0141 Fallout from the April Fools Episode, vegetable seed starting and the real farm meeting

We start by setting the record straight after last weeks April Fools episode.  After we clean up the misinformation we move on to talking about seed starting, soil blocks, plans for the vegetable garden and greenhouse and seeding the pasture behind the chickens.  We also talk a bit about a chronic infection that may be plaguing our swine herd. Then we move to the Front Porch to discuss the "real" farm meeting for 2015 and what changes and plans we have in store for the farm.  This leads into a discussion about the work / life balance that is a real challenge when working a full time job and trying to run a full time farm.
4/8/20151 hour, 1 minute, 40 seconds
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0140 Organic Certification, Row Crops and Kickstarter

Recorded on April 1st 2015 - this episod of the CHicken Thistle Farm Coopcast focuses on some lofty farm plans for 2015 that have all come together today.  Check out the episode all the way to the end to get all the details about the vegetable CSA and pig operations (and so much more) @ Chicken Thistle Farm.
4/1/201532 minutes, 48 seconds
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0139 Farmers on vacation, spring time work list and a small farm in the news

Back from vacation in Florida, Farmer And puts his pants back on and sits down to talk with Farmer Kelli about the long list of springtime tasks ahead.  We refer to our community and how great almost all our listeners are...  and how cool it is to watch them smack down the weeds that crop up! Still waiting for the snow to melt we talk a little about beekeeping and a local supplier we came up with for our frames, gear and starter hive (Nuc). In the Community we share our thoughts on a small farm in NY that has been in the news for some not so positive reasons.  We also talk about how changing the food system is achievable when you vote with your wallet.
3/25/201556 minutes, 7 seconds
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0138 Firing a farm customer, beekeeping, treated seeds in the vegetable garden

This week spring appears to have made an appearance and the snows are slowly receeding!  Still things are slow on the farm and in the vegetable gardens so we talk a little about the tough decisions of a small business when it comes to firing a customer.  We also celebrated the fact that our AI was successful and our gilt is with pigs! Then in the community we talk about the farms newset adventure - raising bees.  Beekeeping was somethign we had thought about but the kind gift from a listener of ours has started us down the path to our first hive (and likely trip to the ER).  So we talk a little about the process we are taking to start up bees on the farm.  We are also excited about the impact on the vegetable gardens the added polenators should have! Finally in the community we talk about a great question a listener posted on our Facebook page about treated seeds and what that means and what our thoughts and practices are on using treated seeds in our vegetable gardens.
3/11/201551 minutes, 12 seconds
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0137 Favorite garden seeds, tractor implements and swine AI

In this episode we discuss the crazy weather around the world and give our hopefull update on the AI situation with our gilt. In the Coopcast Community we discuss a new tractor and what implemnts we reccomend for that tractor.  Frontend loader, tiller and rotarty mower come to the top of the list...  but that's not it. In the Veggie Patch we circle back around to the Rowboat of Goodness from our listeners and list off some of the explicit varites we have selected.
3/4/201548 minutes, 46 seconds
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0136 Gilt AI, vegetable garden seed selection and a rifle part

This weeks episode shares our issues with a trio of cottontail rabbits that have been terrorizing our landscape and what we did to solve the issue.  We also complain about the snow and the cold on the farm.... because...  it feels good to complain.  We quickly throw in a mention of wood shavings and the chicken coop as well. Then in the Veggie Patch we talk about some of the notable varieties of seeds that we purchased this year and where we got them from. Finally in a the prototype hunting / fishing / land management / rural  lifestyle segment...  Farmer Andy talks a bit about a new part discovery that lets you move a scope and rings between different rifles a lot easier!
2/18/201553 minutes, 16 seconds
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0135 Cold weather on the farm, boxed wine and vaccines

The updates this week are short as the cold weather has mostly kept the farming inside.  It's also hard to do much with over 3 feet (that's a meter for our international listeners) of snow on the ground.  We do take some time ot tell the story of Farmer Andy and his boxed wine tho! In this episodes Farm U we talk about the hard and factual science behind vaccines and the debate about vaccination.  We look at the mechanisms of the immune system and the research behind the methodology.  Farmer Andy and Dr. Kelli have a round table discussion clarifying the real science of vaccines. Finally we wind up on the front porch to share some of our closing opinions about the vaccine "debate" that's out there from our perspective.
2/12/20151 hour, 1 minute, 18 seconds
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0134 Hog AI issues, cold weather farming, selecting vegetable garden seeds

This weeks updates include our struggles with a new gilt and artificial insemination this winter.  We also talk about the other challenges of the deep snow and our chickens. We then look forward to warmer days in the Veggie Patch segment where we talk about the process we go through ordering seeds for the vegetable garden.  Who we have ordered seeds from before and what we look for in a seed company.
2/4/201550 minutes, 11 seconds
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0133 The loss of a beloved sow and honest farming on the web

** There's one bad word - so for the kids ears this is marked "EXPLICIT" ** This weeks episode was a tough one as we talked about the loss of one of our first pigs ever - our favorite sow Hermione.  We talk about the stuff that led up to her passing and then how we managed things after she was gone.  That includes how our one lone pig Snow White is doing this winter. Then we have some Ruminations about the farms online that don't share the lows of farming and only seem to like to share the positives.  We talk a bit about the following article - 
1/28/20151 hour, 2 minutes, 39 seconds
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0132 New Year Updates, Missed Pig AI, A Hunting Story

In this episode we review the happenings on the farm (and gardens) over the last few weeks. We talk about the chickens finally starting to lay eggs again (and the impact of extending their days with lights). We talk about some of the food we ate and made of the holidays and we discuss the missed opportunity with artificial insemination and our pigs.  Andy complains about the cold weather and then warms up while telling a hunting store from last deer season.
1/15/201546 minutes, 46 seconds
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0131 The Christmas Coopcast Community Cluster Episode

Our final episode of 2014 is dedicated to our listeners and fans around the globe this holiday season.  It's our huge thank you for making us the #1 farming podcast on the planet! We talk about emails, tweets, Face book comments and posts as well as personal interactions and phone calls we haven't gotten to but have most deffinately read!  Thanks to everyone in the community for listening and be a part of the CoopCast in 2014. For those of you who know how to use search engines we do talk about moving electic netting and moving pasture pens. :) Merry Christmas from Chicken Thistle Farm!
12/18/201457 minutes, 59 seconds
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0130 Farming and health care, sick pig and Christmas lists

This episode brings us back from a few weeks off and updates about the events we had around here on the farm that kept us from coopcasting last week. We talk a little bit about farming and health care in proximity to the farm (given the recent events).  We also discuss our sick pig and the course of treatment we underwent to get her back to being a healthy girl again! In the Farmers Choice segment we share a few simple gift ideas for the holidays that might make your shopping easier!
12/11/201454 minutes, 45 seconds
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0129 Easy farm recipes, bad jokes and favorite vegetable garden greens

We are calling this the "We eat good episode" since we are talking about simple, fast and delicious farm recipes including: Pressure cooker chicken Frozen veggies in chili Pre-made frozen cookie rounds Easy ways to help you can / freeze more food. In the Veggie Patch we climb on board the Rowboat of Goodness and discuss a few winter squash varieties and some of our favorite non-lettuce greens in the garden.
11/20/201444 minutes, 35 seconds
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0128 Pork pickup episode, hunting season updates and a CSA review

This weeks updates are around the pick up of the smoked pork (and we have customers coming as we are recording).  Farmer Andy shares a bit of a bow season update and we talk a little about the status of the hoop house. We close with a review of the local fruit CSA we were enrolled in and all the goodness and a little of the stuff they could have improved.
11/13/201448 minutes, 39 seconds
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0127 Pork from the butcher, hunting update and a trip down memory lane

This weeks updates include a hunting season short session.  We talk about bo season so far and the only arrow this season to miss its mark thus far.  We also talk about the pork that's back from the butcher and the impact of the seasonal reduction in eggs. In Farmer Kelli's Choice, we take a trip down memory lane.  Visit our Facebookpage (login not needed) and scroll back through the pictures to our first post in 2010...  we walk through 2010 and 2011 remembering several of the highlights in photos!
11/5/201445 minutes, 49 seconds
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0126 A discussion about moving pastured pigs to the processor

This week's update is really an episode discussion around the end of the pork season for us - the moving of the pigs to the USDA processor.  We talk through what we did to get the pigs comfortable wit hthe trailer, how we use sorting borads to move the pigs on pasture into the trailer, our holding pen strategy, fencing and dropoff. It's really a retelling of the stories and some of hte skills we used to get this little piggie to market! 
10/22/201448 minutes, 50 seconds
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0125 Prepping pastured pigs for processing and vegetable garden tomato favorites

In this episode the Updates include Farmer Andy's pants free romp becasue of the warm weather, Hermione moving back to pasture with the piglets and preparations for taking the pigs for processing. Then in the Veggie Patch we discuss an overview of our tomato varieties for 2014- what will stay on the rowboat of goodness and what gets tossed overboard! Varieties discussed: Juliet BHN624 cherry Sungold cherry Piriform Valencia Pink Beauty Cherokee Green New Girl Brandywine Cherokee Purple Defiant Celebrity Martha Washington San Marzano
10/16/201434 minutes, 47 seconds
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0124 Vegetable garden put to bed, starting a CSA and passionate listeners

This week's updates include our prep work in getting ready to move the pigs to the processor this year. We also put the vegetable garden to bed for the season and talk about the process and some of the suprise veggiesthis year. And of course, we have to talk about hunting season. In the Coopcast Community we respond to questions about black fly farming (maggots!), starting a CSA and the callenges involved and how some of our listeners have used our content at some very emotional and powerful moments in their lives.  It's insane to hear people listeing to us with a spouse on their death bed, recovering from cancer or training to defuse a bomb.
10/8/201452 minutes, 13 seconds
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0123 A tour of the farms greenhouse and its vegetables

This week the CoopCast becomes a HoopCast! We spend the episode looking at photos of our greenhouse / hoophouse / high tunnel and talk through the design and the how nad the why.  We both share our thoughts and opinions on the evolution of our enclosed vegetable garden area and what we like about gardening inside a controlled structure. If you are following along all the images can be found on our Flickr page in the album  Also an indepth discussion when we built it is on our  as well.
9/25/201439 minutes, 21 seconds
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0122 Fall plantings in the greenhouse, cheese making, business ideas

This week our farm updates are simple as the season is slowing down to just the basics.  We talk about the plantings in the gardens in the greenhouse since frost is now in our area.  We are hoping to extend the season and keep harvesting vegetables and herbs for several more months.  There's also updates about pigs in pasture as well. In the Ruminations discussion this week we talk about businesses and how so many let opportunity slip through their fingers.  We share the details of a cheese making class we took at a local winery and the missed opportunities that were everywhere.  There's lessons to be learned in bad expereinces and this one was rife with them.  Although - making your own cheese is cool! We also talk about a business that asked us for input and HOPED we might mention them - .  It's a cool concept on .  It's a much better approach to a business than the first one (they asked us clearly for feedback and hoped we would mention them).  There are still some lessons to be learned here as well. The final business we talk about is Adams Holsters - the makers of the  you have ever seen -  - and one of the best gifts we have ever received from a coopcast listener!
9/17/201452 minutes, 15 seconds
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0121 Farm updates, tractor project, listener reviews

Back from a break we talk aboutthe pigs in the pasture and how well they are growing, the late blight that got the tomatoes, the success we had with straw based potatoes and a whole lot more. We also go over the 500th iTunes review and answer some listener feedback on topics ranging from keeping stock tanks fresh to predators to game cameras.
9/10/201449 minutes, 44 seconds
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0120 Happy pigs on pasture, canning and freezing garden fresh food, Farm U : Containment

This weeks updates start with the pigs scheduled for butcher, their pasture and their rapid weight gains after worming.  We moved the chicken netting fencing for the layers and have been busy in the vegetable gardens and kitchen.  Farmer Kelli has been canning and freezing all sorts of fresh veggies as well as baked, roasted, blanched and parboiled treats! The vegetable garden is producing and we are expecting be offer an end of summer share full of goodness - including a pasture raised chicken. The Farm U is part of a series we are starting called How We Do It - where we take things that have had lots of questions from listeners and do our best to show with pictures and explanations how we do things around the farm. This weeks episode is all about "Containment" - our fencing setup and why we made the decisions we did. To follow along with the images we are discussing - visit our flicker page and the album  Good ole Flickr link -  We are off for 2 weeks over Labor Day - so enjoy your celebrations and be safe.
8/20/201450 minutes, 38 seconds
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0119 Weaning pig meningitis, bountiful vegetable garden, the perfect BLT

After taking a week off for a trip to Empire Farm Days, we return with an update from the farm show.  We also share the story of a sick pig on the farm who contracted weaning swine meningitis and what we did to get Mr Green Beans back to health. We tour the Veggie Patch to talk about all the harvested and put up foods Kelli has been making / freezing / canning as she's enjoying a greate vegetable garden season this year.  The homestead is certainly going to be prepared for the polar vortex this winter! There's also a bit of fun discussions around the farm this week too!
8/13/201455 minutes, 14 seconds
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0118 The future of farming pigs, garden fresh vegetable recipes and sleepy farmers

This episode won't go down as one of the most exciting or passionate - but we do talk about the status of things mid-summer around the farm.  We continue to prep the pasture for the piglet weaning, the layers are laying and the vegetable garden and green house is producing LOTS of fresh produce this time of year. In the We Eat Good segment Farmer Kelli talks about some of her favorite recipes for the fresh veggies that are piled on the counters this time of year.  They are all paper printed recipes so no links - but pay attention and she tells you where to find them or what to Google. You might find some things here: or here
7/30/201443 minutes, 45 seconds
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0117 Piglets moved, the vegetable garden goodies, listener questions

This weeks farming updatesinclude our experience this week processing chickens on anotehr farm as helpers.  We also moved the pigs to fresh pasture and are getting ready for weaning.  Finally the vegetable garden and the greenhouse are producing all sorts of fresh veggies...  so Farmer Kelli takes us through what they are and what she has been doing with them. In the Coopcast Community segment we catch up on the listener backlog of emails, posts, tweets and all sorts of other forms of questions.  From a solider in Afgahanastan to listeners in Europe to the ever popular Doctor Who and Star Trek questions - we try and answer them all. In a Coopcast produced and directed by Farmer Andy...  things in this episode don't follow any stinkin agenda! 
7/23/20141 hour, 1 minute, 57 seconds
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0116 Chicken Processing Preps, Processing Review, Cornish Cross Chickens (again)

This episode discusses the setup and work that goes into chicken processng BEFORE the actual chicken processing event.  There's a lot more than just catching and plucking involved on a well run chicken processing event and we thought it might be worth while sharing those stories and preps as well. We then share a bit of a retrospective on the actual events of the chicken rocessing day and how we run the event. Finally we have a Farmers Choice segment that answers so many of the continual questions and misinformation out there about the Cornish Cross chickens we raise.
7/16/201459 minutes, 50 seconds
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0115 On Farm Staycation, Vegetable Garden Success, SiriusXM + O&A + raw milk

After a week of on farm vacation and frozen fresh fruit libations enjoyed on the deck, we are back with a bunch of updates around the pastured chickens, a recent hoophouse project and the vegetable gardens.  We also talk about the pigs and some general happenigns around the farm. In the Veggie Patch we talk a lot about the success of the peas, the success we have had training and pruning the tomato plants this year and an update on our mulching. This week on Close Encounters with Free Ranging Farmers on the Front Porch - we talk about a seemingly non-farm thing...  The recent firing of "shock jock" (what a stupid title) Anthony Cumia from Sirius XM's Opie and Anthony show and why EVERYONE should be outraged.  Not at his tweets and not at his show...  but becasue it appears anyone, anytime, can be fired for their opinions when not at work if they are unpopular, unaccepted, not politically correct or whatever.  Think this has no impact on you - what if there's "outrage" becasue people don't like you promoting an "unsafe" food - something, maybe, like raw milk?
7/9/201453 minutes, 41 seconds
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0114 Piglets get names, pastured chickens and part time farming

This weeks updates are pretty simple.  We talk about piglets and names, the chickens in the pasture and some a la carte CSA shares. Then we jump into the Farmers Choice that Kelli sprung on Andy - "are you a part-time farmer". What does that phrase mean, if anything. What decisions are impacted when you are "part-time" or not deriving all your income off the farm.  There's a bit of debate and some good conversations around this topic.  
6/25/201453 minutes, 18 seconds
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0113 Farming weather, chickens to pasture, supportive farmers

The updates this week start with the farming weather - and the fact it's been unusually "normal".  We have moved the chickens to pasture on a solid growth of clover andthey are loving it.  The pigs are gowing well and weaning is a few weeks away. In the vegetable garden the peas and eveything else is growing and healthy.  Even the weeds are under control with the mulching effort we have undertaken this year. In the CoopCast Community we wanted to take a bit to thank all the listeners and farmers who shared their thougths and good wishes with us following episode 110.  We talk a little about some of the questions people asked and share some of our thoughts about raising pigs going forward in the future.
6/18/201457 minutes, 24 seconds
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0112 The farms potato patch, vegetable garden fencing and super soil in the greenhouse

This weeks updates include the latest on the 7 surviving piglets and the status of their name selection.  We talk about the pastured broilers in the brooder and how they are doing as well. We also check in on the laying hens and the egg eating issues. In the Veggie Patch we talk about the status of the garden and fencing.  We talk about a great find at a local garden center to help with the soil quality and quantity in the green house and we also talk about this years potato patch plans.
6/4/201443 minutes, 3 seconds
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0111 Chicks on the farm, happy piglets, vegetable gardening fun!

This week we are just doing a bunch of updates (since there's a lot to share).  We talk about how the piglets are doing well even after the traumatic events covered in episode .  Then we tell a story of how great and helpful the United States Postal Service was when they seemed to have lost our box of broiler chickens. But have no fear, we found them and we share how they are doing in the brooder. In the Veggie Patch we talk about the progress and planting of the vegetable garden now that the official growing season has begun. We got in the tomatoes, peppers, eggplant and a bunch more over the long weekend.  We also talk about a listener inspired mulching session around the asparagus and rhubarb in the garden.
5/29/201443 minutes, 3 seconds
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0110 Loss of a pig and piglets while farrowing on our farm

This episode is a frank and honest retelling of the harrowing farrowing experiences of 2014 on our small farm.  From the highs of hand delivering piglets to the lows of losing a breeding sow, this is as honest of a farming story as you may ever hear.
5/21/20141 hour, 17 minutes, 44 seconds
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0109 Gardening, farrowing and why the Non GMO Project might just be a joke

This weeks updates are all over the place after skipping 2 weeks of episodes!  We talk about moving the pigs to their farrowing paddock, moving the egg laying chickens to fresh pasture and how the weather this spring has changed things a bit. We talk about the vegetable gardens and the progress of potting up plants in the greenhouse as well as some of the first plants of the season being planted in the garden itself.  Not having a full season CSA this year has made both the farmers a lot more relaxed and we had a chance to really enjoy our big annual nursery auction. We talk about the new firearm on the farm and why we chose what we did for "on farm carry".  We also discuss the joining of a fruit CSA and what we hope to get out of a CSA as customers! In this Farm U we talk about the science behind testing for the presence of GMO's in your food and the results that show that the folks at the Non GMO Project  appear to have yet another "pay for" certification that appears to mean absolutely nothing to the consumer.
5/7/20141 hour, 1 minute, 1 second
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0108 Cleaning a chicken coop, cooking Easter ham, declining farmers

With a bit of warm spring weather we have been able to get to some overdue chores.  The joy of the springtime Coop clean out is completed and the compost is on the garden.  We have more hydrant troubles and talk a bit about the YNN TV crew that was here to learn about how we produce eggs. In this weeks "We eat good" segment, we talk about the joys of cooking an Easter Ham...  kinda.  Rather how to simply prepare a ham and the unloved ham steak. Out of the kitchen and back on the front porch we discuss an NBC news article about the declining number of farmers and the long term risk to the country.  So - read the article - be concerned and buy lots of food from your local farmer!
4/16/201451 minutes, 44 seconds
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0107 Spring arrives on the farm, vegetable garden seed choices, a Mark Cuban quote

This weeks updates are finally more than just worrying about the weather.  We got a springtime break and took to the outdoors!  The asparagus patch got a cleanout of last years fronds. The chicken coop got a bit of a cleaning too. There was fence mending and happy pigs as well. Then in the Veggie Patch we discuss the seeds we have started for this years vegetable garden and why we liked them.  We also talk a bit about some challenges with a soil block recipe change this year - a bit unexpected. Then we have some Close Encounters with Free Ranging Farmers on the Front Porch as we discuss a recent quote from the Shark Tanks's Mark Cuban...  and how it's about YOUR farm too! 
4/9/201456 minutes, 16 seconds
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0106 Spring comes to the farm, starting seeds, thinking about the vegetable garden

As Spring comes to the farm (with another snow storm too) we took a walk around the propery at the end of March to try and come to grips with what this late Spring means to our garden plans.  We discuss the winters impact on our plans and the things we typically got done that are not on the to-do list. We also talk vegatable gardens - specifically what we have been doing with regards to seed starting and preparing the greenhouse.  Speaking of the greenhouse, we talk about the issues the cold weather has spawned and some solutions we are considering.
4/2/201446 minutes, 40 seconds
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0105 Pregnant pigs, wormings pigs, buying a half pig

This weeks updates include more cold weather and some updates about the animals around the farm. The pigs and chickens are doing well but all of us are done with this cold weather. We also talk a bit about the business of farming and what we still need to do on that said with regards to customer emails and notifications. In the Coopcast Community we have a breif tutorial on searching old coopcast episodes so you can find things you might have missed or are interested in. Brent had a question about worming pigs and we answer it and point to Coopcast 091 There was a listener who asked about deer fencing and food plots to keep the deer out of his garden. Rebecca had a question about turkey feed and turkey poults Gail blew in with a question about finding half a pig to purchase and what goes into that decision
3/26/201453 minutes, 36 seconds
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0104 Vulcan Blizzard and the Farm, prepping for weather, frozen water pipe

This episode was recorded live during the Vulcan Blizzard event! THe updates of course revlove around the blizzard and how we prepared for it. We also talk about the coldest day ever recorded in March and the frozen pipe it casued.  Farmer Kelli talks about these events and her CSA decision.In the CoopCast Community we talk about some iTunes reviews, listener emails and some general questions we received.
3/12/201453 minutes, 55 seconds
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0103 A new tractor store, a day in the life of a farmer, eating out of season

As the bitter cold continues to make #farmerandy rage, we discuss the weather... We also talk about a "major award", a new Tractor Supply store and living life on a frozen farm. Actually we detail a day in the life of the farm in the middle of winter around here.  It's not overly exciting but it's honest. Then this week we have a Farmers Choice segment talking about what we are eating and why this time of year.  We discuss the balance of food we have put up vs what we buy from the store and what is still left in the root cellar. Then #farmerandy regails the episode with tales of calorie counting using Lose It on his iPhone and how crazy the notion of barcoded food strikes him.
3/6/201444 minutes, 21 seconds
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0102 Farm animals in the cold, winter greenhouse garden, farm meeting

This weeks updates include a folloup about the eveil seeds that Johnny is selling and why we will continue to buy from Johnny Seeds.  For your reference, here's the list of seeds they get from  We discuss how the endless cold this winter has impacted the pigs and chickens and how we deal with cooped up critters on a free range farm.  Kelli gives an update on the Ag assessment while Andy complains...In the Veggie Patch we pretned that it's gardening season and talk about artichokes, managing mice and voles in the greenhouse, and how we heat (or dont) and water the greenhouse.Farmers choice is the conclusion to the 2014 farm meeting.  The agenda items include our plans for:Egg layers Pigs Broilers Turkeys
2/26/20141 hour, 7 minutes, 24 seconds
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0101 Selecting garden seeds, winter farming updates, lard pie crusts

The updates are a little thin this week as we watch temps falling and the snow piling up.  Mostly we talk about keeping warm and the successful insemination of our pigs. In the community we pick up on the Monsanto conversation last week and some new comments about companies like Johnny Seed and Territorial and the internet myth that they buy their seeds from Monsanto.  We also talk about our process for selecting seeds and why we pick the seeds we do. ()In the "We eat Good" segment this week we talk about making pie crusts from lard and how great they really are! 
2/13/201436 minutes, 55 seconds
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0100 Farming discussions: Monsanto, work-farm-life balance, thanking the listeners

With 100 episodes behind us we thought it was appropriate to look back at the thoughts and opinions of our farming podcast (farmcast)? and spend most of the episode focusing on the reason why we do what we do - it's all for the listeners! We talk a bit about some listener favorite topics and some recent ones like Monsanto's decision to use some conventional crossbreeding techniques. While this isn't a giant 100th episode extravaganza, it's a fun look at the whys behind why we do what we do and why we live pasture to plate.
2/5/201450 minutes, 21 seconds
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099 Swine artificial insemination, agricultural assessment, Annual farm meeting

The Updates around the Farm this week focus on the big event of artificial insemination and the unexpected surprise we had with the "scheduled" standing heat. We also share our thoughts on FreshBooks as an accounting tool for farming (short version - run away).  We discuss out first free range Cornish birg from last years day ranging experiment and share the experience thus far with the tax related agricultural assessment. In the Veggie Patch it's seed ordering time.  We continue the discussion from Facebook with those veggies we can't live without.  The best of the best on the Rowboat of Goodness (better than the silly Ark of Taste) In our Farmers Choice segment this week the Annual farm meeting part 1 - CSA plans and how we are not doing a CSA like in the past...  this year will be different!
1/22/201452 minutes, 23 seconds
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098 Farming in a polar vortex, seed starting lights, delicious farm recipes

We are back at the coopcast in 2014.  We enjoyed our break but are glad to be back.  While we were gone we had the coldest weather we have ever had while farming as the polar vortex descended on NY. We also had our annual farm meeting and other fun events.  Tune into this farm fresh coopcast for the latest news from the homestead! In the Veggie Patch (which is frozen over) we are going to talk a bit about some seed starting tips and techniques as people are looking towards spring already. Farm Fresh Recipes in our food segment include two new dishes we made over Christmas and thought were delicious: Kale and Brussels Sprout Salad - Mario Batali's Arista alla Porchetta - 
1/15/201453 minutes, 15 seconds
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097 Farming in the bitter cold, moose fencing and a special thanks

This is the last CoopCast of the year!  We expect to be back with another episode January 8th, 2014.  So on with the farming updates and the bitter cold and endless snow here on the farm. We talk a little about how the pigs and chickens are doing in this brutal cold. If you haven't checked it out - visit our Facebook page and see the story of the #elfonafarm...  To celebrate the holidays we have a community segment where we talk about: The recent FDA and antibiotic use ruling brought up by Daniel- We pick on Nancy (again) for calling Andy, Randy Pam asked us about reusable canning lids that we discussed in episode 030 Tori has a question about electric fencing, goats, moose and bear Kyle asked a good thinking question about predator control In our last segment we discuss all the people and businesses who make what we do possiable. A special thanks to Pine Creek Feeds, Joe's Meat Market, Welp Hatchery and of course Farmtek (if you listen to the episode you will get a coupon code good for $25 off $75 or more!)...  and of course we thank our customers! Finally - it's that time of the year to nomiate your favorite podcasts - so please take moment to give us your vode on Sticher Radio here -  Have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
12/18/20131 hour, 2 minutes, 50 seconds
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096 An agricultural assessment, farm based accounting software, recipes

The Farming Updates this week are few and far between.  We do celebrate the fact we got our 1st Easter egg just in time for Christmas.  We talk about Belle standing or not and the challenges of a new gilt in heat as well as Kelli's plans for the farm undergoing an agricultural assessment.  We also discuss some simple online accounting packages for managing our farm - from Quickbooks (bad) to Freshbooks (great).In the Farmers Choice segment brought to you by FarmTek (check out the segment for a coupon code to save you $25 off any order of $75 or more!) - we talk a few Christmas gift ideas as well as recipies and how we approach getting things from the pasture onto the plate.
12/12/201347 minutes, 25 seconds
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095 Thanksgiving turkeys, farming with social media, raw milk

This weeks updates talke a bit about the winter weather and the snow we had here on the farm and the impact on thep igs.  We move them to the winter paddock - finally!  We talk about Tahnksgiving turkeys and why we love ours so much.  One farmer is getting tired of deer season so we give an update there and close with some thoughts on our pork sales. This weeks Farmers Choice segment is sponsored by  Check out the segment for a coupon code to save $25 off orders over $75!!! We also talk about farming and farmers use of social media. There's a lot to using social media correctly and we just scratch the surface and share some examples of how it has and has not worked for our farm and others. Then we put our feet up and head to some Close Encounters with Free Ranging Farmers on the Front Porch to discuss - raw milk.  Mind you - these are our opinoons about raw milk...  because so many of you have asked. Take them or leave them will all the discussion out there on this hot topic.
12/5/20131 hour, 8 minutes, 19 seconds
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094 Some winter farm prep, a bit of hunting and being thankful for our listeners

This weeks's CoopCast is a batch of updates and a bit of community.  We talk about getting ready to move the pigs to their winter area and the fencing preparations that gointo that move. We give an update on deer hunting and pork sales (whihc are unrelated). We also are looking forward already to spring farrowing...  and figuring out when our new gilt is in standing heat has been a challenge. In the community we just answer a bunch of questiosn for our Facebook page!
11/27/201359 minutes, 59 seconds
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093 Modern trends in swine production review, deposit based farming, common sense laws

This is a coopcast unlike any other... it's our first foray into an immersive multimedia experience.  We play the video "" from 1961 produced by US Steel (  It's really cool to look back over 50 years to how pigs were produced and how we stack up today. So join us as we walk the fields with a true swine specialist! From there we free range over to some more contemporary farming topics like "how do I get started" and "I know how to farm better than you". There's a lot of people out there who think they are the person to change the way the world grows food... meaning they think they are smarter than all the people in agriculture over the last 10,000 years. Beware of them! Then we talk about deposit based farming. We explore the why's and how's of what we do. This was a great question by Tyler and we do our best to explain the risks and rewards of this approach. Finally we respond to listeners that asked us about the legal world around small scale farming. Don't you think we all need some common sense laws around agriculture, food production and direct to consumer farms? Who doesn't think that some common sense controls around things like,  ohh, raw milk make us all safer? Join in on the discussion on our Facebook page @ or hit us up on Twitter and let us know your thoughts!
11/14/20131 hour, 5 minutes, 57 seconds
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092 Boar taint is for real, farming listeners around the world and are you a prepper?

In the CoopCast Updates we talk about the big smoked pork pickup and the fact the second batch of pigs did not have the USDA inspectors reject their livers. On a nice night out on the town at a super fancy resturant the farmers ordered a dish called "pork two ways" where they were served pork loin medailons and laquered pork belly.  While the meal was delicious somethign very interesting happened... Farmer Andy confirmed that he is deffinately sensitive to the "mythical" boar taint. There is no doubt that it exists and that it was in the pork belly... Farmer Kelli was grateful and ate it all! On the Front Porch we talk about our listeners a LOT.  We talk a bit about our UK following with Trevor and Robert.  We share the "comment" from Tilda the Swede living in Argentina... she was astonished that anyone with our accent would have anything interesting to say... A rather awkward compliment, ya think?!  We also respond to the questions from Steve and others asking if we a preppers or not. And what exacly is a prepper? Farmer Kelli redefines it to us as "being a responsible adult".
11/6/20131 hour, 58 seconds
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091 Customer on farm pickups, moving new layer chickens and pig livers

The updates this week include our last major on farm pork pickup by our customers. It's always nice to see customers and experience the coolness of local foods through their eyes. We share some of the challenges in delivering pork to customers as well. This week was also the consolidation of laying birds and the culling of the old flock. In Questions, Conversations & Ruminations we talk openly and honestly about pigs and worms. We learned the hard way that we need to be more proactive in deworming the pigs as we had the first batch of livers rejected due to worms. We also saw a decrease in expected hanging weight... although there were no signs of worms in the pigs, we had them and share the experience. In Farm U, Dr. Farmer Kelli talks about hand sanitizer here on the farm and how it's used in our day to day farming activites. Farmer Andy is generally full of bad humor and sci-fi puns.
10/23/201347 minutes, 59 seconds
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090 Farmer anniversary dinner, when butcher cuts are wrong and the Walking Dead farm

This weeks farm and garden updates include the farmer anniversary and dinner.  We talk about getting batch 2 of pigs to the processor and getting the fresh cuts back and to customers from the first batch. We have a new freezer to house the butcher cuts we will be selling from the farm starting in November (stay tuned for pricing and information). Finally we put the veggie patch to bed as we closed up the vegetable garden brining almost all of our gardening season to a close. In the CoopCast Community we answer some listener questions about: Why we choose seed vendors we do How many people listen to podcast- trends dipping in Oct Listener john- paying us $1 million for 80 more episodes... the check is in the mail... Josh- chickens on pasture but no grazers On the Close Encounters with Free Ranging Farmers on the Front Porch segment - here's the Jimmy Fallon & Justin Timberlake #hashtag clip that's totatlly worth watching - .  We talk about the movie Gravity and it's a strong recomendation to go see. Finally we discuss the season premier of The Walking Dead and if sustainable famer types are drawn to that type of tv.
10/17/201356 minutes, 12 seconds
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089 Turkey processing on the farm, pigs to the processor and the vegetable garden is still producing

This weeks updates are a bunch of "end of the farming season" things...  Turkey processing is complete! It always goes very slow but we had all of them sold.  We were very suprised by how small these heritage birds were this year.  We also took our first batch of pigs to the processor and have the second bacth scheduled for next week.  In taking the pigs we have chosen our new gilt as well! This weeks Veggie patch segment is sponsored by - listen to the coopcast for the coupon code to sahev $25 on orders of $75 or more. We talk about what we are harvesting in the gardens right now and from the green house.  The cold and wet spring that stunted the plants seems to have been a blessing for our late season harvest.  Tomatoes, zuchinni, and winter squash top the gardn and greenhouse lists.  Andy laments about how gross eggplant is and discusses a new use for them (hint - pistols are involved).  We also tak a little about the question we get asked a lot about the CSA or other farm enterprises - "is it worth it?"
10/10/201352 minutes, 38 seconds
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088 Turkey processing on the farm, a listener eats his chicken, filling out a pork cut sheet

This weeks updates really sound a lot like the end of the season is upon us. We have turkey processing this weekend and are planning the changeover of chickens in the chick wagon and the coop. We also talk about the pigs to processor: trailer in place -1st batch Monday 2nd batch- following Monday receiving final cut sheets, etc our cut sheet decisions This week the CoopCast Community is sponsored by FarmTek - listen to get you FarmTek promotion code / coupon code today! First off, thanks for get well wishes last week. Still, Farmer Andy is better this week and should be out hunting tonight! Second, thanks for making your questions and comments public for otehrs to learn from.  Now on to the listener questions... Karen- asked have we tried free range Cornish yet? Christy- wanted to know if we have written what's in the row boat anywhere? Tim- grilled first of his own chickens - felt good to be part of the solution that we inspired him to take acton on! Rebekah- asked if we make enough $ w/ CSA to make it worth it... Chris - asks about "free help" on the farm In a new Farm U segment - we talk 1/2 pig cut sheets What is a pork cut sheet and how do we set ours up to help customers make decisions. Visual element to this segment - ()
10/2/201358 minutes, 46 seconds
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087 Butcher cuts and cash flow on the farm, fresh vs frozen meat and the vegetable garden Rowboat Roundup

Updates this week are around the continued sale of pork butcher cuts and the decisions we are considering around actually carrying some inventory (something we have thus far not done).  We also got our first egg in the chick wagon as the current laying flock slows way down with molting and the change of seasons. Finally we review the status of our sold out turkeys and the questions we get all the time about the difference (or perception of difference) between fresh and frozen meat.Check out the link about some science of frozen meat!  This episode of the CoopCast was sponsored by Farmtek.  Check out for over 30,000 different products to make you home and farm run smoothly.  If you visit now and use the promotion code we give you in this episode you will save $25 on any purchase of $75 or more...  that's like a 33% savings!  So support this podcast by supporting . This week in the Veggie Patch we talk about the end of the CSA and discuss the Rowboat of Goodness from this year in our Rowboat Roundup! (The Rowboat of Goodness is our far less snooty take on the Slow Food "Ark of Taste").  So tune in to hear how some of our favorites like Celebrity, Costata Romanesca, Sultan Green and Sultan Yellow did in the 2013 season!  Be inspired to add some of our favorites you your farm or garden next year!
9/19/201352 minutes, 26 seconds
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086 A deposit based farming business model, dual purpose chicken breeds, Chicken processing in China

This weeks updates on the farm include our ongoing saga of selling pork sausage :)  Want some?  We als otalk pre-deposits and our business model as well as some of the lessons learned in appraoching farm sales with a deposit model. We have turkey orders coming up as well on the last day of the 2013 CSA! Ohh, and there was an areal predator strike on one of our chickens too...  but she's fine! Hey - if you haven't visited yet and shopped their great selection of items - now is the time.  By using the promoton code (listen to the episode for the code) when you check out you can save $25 on an order of $75 or more...  and to help you do that we spend some time in this episode talking baout some of the great FarmTek poultry products we use on our farm. In the CoopCast Community we answer a pair of questions from Scott and Maggie about dual purpose chicken breeds and telling if a gilt is pregnant. In the "In The News" segment we talk about the USDA decision to let US grown chicken leav the country, head to China, get processed and then sent back to the US as a food product.  Sounds like another well thought out government program to us! Chicken from China reading includes:
9/12/20131 hour, 3 minutes, 6 seconds
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085 Sponsoring a coopcast, bunnies for pork and farming apps on your phone

With only a month left for the pigs on pasture we are still selling a bunch of sausage...  and now bacon too! We also discuss the options we are considering around keeping the mom's like we have before vs selling them after a single farrowing and keeping smaller gilts over winter to save on feed costs. We welcome our new sponsor to the coopcast - FarmTek!  We have talked about their products several times over the years and think we have found a terrific partner with them.  As a listener you can visit the website and save $25 on any order of $75 or more by checking out with the code mentioned in the episode.  This is your chance to support us by supporting our sponsors! In the CoopCast Community we talk a bit about listener messages and questions and how YOU can help US help YOU!  We also answer a listener question about bartering bunny meat for pork on a neighboring farm. This broaches topics like determining value of your farm products and goods in a bater situation. We officially launch our new segment called Close Encounters with Free Ranging Farmers on the Front Porch...  where talk a bit about the name, the new iPhone next week, the use of social media by farms and what our
9/5/201351 minutes, 19 seconds
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084 Healing injured pigs, late season vegetable gardens and a farm fresh tomato taste test

With a bit more relaxed schedule the CoopCast takes a bit more of a relaxed discussion of an injured pig and how amazing animals are with injury.  We talk about Hermione and piglets as well as a grower piglet with hemorrhoids! We talk a bit about selling our sausage to folks and the process around that since we got over 240 pounds back from the USDA processor last week. We then take a late season walk around the Veggie Patch and talk about what did well in this crazy growing season and what didn't.  Since it's late summer there are tomatoes galore now and we did a taste test of the best tomatores in your garden.  Kelli also talks about some of what she has been canning and freezing.
8/28/201348 minutes, 21 seconds
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083 Moving pigs together after weaning, fencing color matters and other farming tales

This week we have been challenged for time so we share a week full of pig centric farm updates.  We moved out lone sow back to in with the piglets and it's been a little exciting - both the move and the post move drama.  We talk a bit about all the work that goes into settin up a new pasture space for the pigs and the challenges that came with it. We share a piglet injury and a decision to move thigns inside the padock around after it was set up. We also update on turkeys and chickens...  and mention something big is happening to the podcast in the near future!
8/22/201345 minutes, 5 seconds
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082 Turkey MURDER!, Beloved farm hog to market and hunting on the homestead

This weeks episode discusses our sleuthing around a dead turkey inside the fencing and what might have happened. We talk about bringing Katniss to the butcher and the plans for the rest of the pigs. In the CoopCast Community we talk a little about Robert's post on Facebook about soy in food and spend more time talking about how science gets done as opposed to the paper on the subject - .  Kelli updates folks on her hand treatments and we make a plea to try and move the needle over on Stitcher Radio - head on over and give our show a "thumbs up"! Our show on !  Ohh - Go rate us on iTunes!!! We are introducing a new segment that we need YOU (the listener) to give a name to.  It's kind of a near the farm, homesteading, farmsteading, rural living, country living segment.  A place to talk about all the OTHER questions we get about hunting, cooking, sweet tea and "what do you have in your barn" kinds of things.  You guys keep asking things that are not "farming" specific - so we figured we needed a segment to fit the bill...  but we need a name!  This episode we talk at a high level about hunting!
8/14/201356 minutes, 53 seconds
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081 Prepping for the pig move, farm show, more farm fresh recipies

We are getting things ready to move Katniss off the farm and into the freezer. Part of that process is getting the rest of the pigs ready to move to a new pasture space in the next week or so. We talk turkey about the pastured birds as well as a brief CSA update.  Kelli reviews some suggestions for her chapped hands and considers alternative to gloves. Farmer Andy reports from the field in this weeks In The News segment sharing the trends he noted from Empire Farm Days.  We talk tractors, alternative heating on the farm and other trends. Finally the Food on the Farm segment returns with rave reviews.  This week we talk about (and share recipes) for eggplant nuggets and the best smoked ribs you have ever had in your life!
8/7/201352 minutes, 53 seconds
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080 Growing pigs, planning for the Fall garden, recipes from the farm

This week we share some updates about the pigs on pasture and how well the not so little guys are doing.  Katniss and Herm are in heat and lovin on Andy something awful. We talk a little about the new turkey shelter and the heritage turkeys - have we clipped their wings, find out! Finally we talk about how nice the chick wagon is! In the Veggie Patch we talk about Fall planting and the staples of cooler weather late-season plantings like radishes, greens, bok choy, beans, and beets. In the greenhouse we are also testing an observation we have made about lettuce that sprouts in there. Farmer Kelli needs advice on some gloves. Then we spend some time Cooking on the farm and share some of our favorite farm fresh recipes for eating seasonally.  Delicious recipes for Bruschetta, a grilled romaine BBQ bacon salad and gourmet pork based burgers. Delicious and simple summer concoctions to make your mouth water!
7/31/201347 minutes, 21 seconds
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079 Fall vegetable gardening, building a new farm, food safety and farming

This weeks farm updates are short and sweet so we can get to a bunch of our listeners questions.  We did more pig castrations - not on ours, but super small mini-pigs.  It's a great example of how going slow on a farm make a lot of sense.  We also got the turkeys out on pasture - finally - with a redesigned mobile turkey shelter that ROCKS! In our CoopCast Community section we talk a bunch of listener questions like: Are we planning for fall planting? Erin wanted to know about her NC property as a blank slate for a new farm.  How would we set things up to start in terms of the barn, the green house, and the animals. Adam asked about our feed mixture for Cornish x and turkeys on pasture Brent (who brought us the phrase "worm worshipping hippies") Asked about chicken processing and how soon after processing do customers pick up? In our Ruminations we share our thoughts on food safety article regarding farm market chickens and their bacteria. 
7/24/201353 minutes, 41 seconds
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078 A slow return to normal on the farm, chicken processing setup and a farming nugget

This week the rain has stopped and the farmers are much happier in their daily chores.  We also are finished with our pastured broilers this year and introduce a visual element in this episode for you to follow along in our discussion of chicken processing. ().  We then talk about the day in general, the size of the chickens this year and the financials of pastured poultry.  We then have a quick update on the pigs and the vegetable garden and CSA. We then have a Rumination continuing on with last weeks whine-cast and talk about the things we have done that made the swampy weather just slightly more managable. Things like our drainage ditch, hut placement, round bales, checking during rain and how we need to improve our soil! A new segment called the Chicken Thistle Nugget This segment is a chance to share something small, a nugget of wisdom, if you will.  And this week Kelli talks a bit about a farm blog post she found to be very interesting...
7/18/20131 hour, 2 minutes, 36 seconds
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077 Frustrated Farmers, Weaning of Piglets and the Challenge of Chores

This is not our happiest coopcast...  we have been struggling with endless rains this year and it shows in this episode.  We talk about the weaning process of the piglets as well as catching some of them for selling as growers.  We do share some good "how to" ideas / lessons regarding moving and catching piglets.  But mostly - we use the coopcast as a chance to vent our frustrations with how difficult the weather has made things.  We avoid talk about the gardens as things are just not looking good. In our Ruminations segment we talk about knowhing when to say when - when have you taken on too much and when does burn out kill the joy of farming. WARNING: This episode may be a bit of a downer.
7/11/201354 minutes
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076 Hot Pigs, the recovery of sick tomatoes in the garden / greenhouse, remember when on the farm

Last week we responded to a listener question with a little bit of good natured humor about a non-conventional mode of transportation - the tricycle.  We learned that 99.9% of trikers are funny people and, well, let's just say - if you are going to ask us a question and are looking for an answer...  you should expect the same humor and standards we apply to ourselves to also apply to you. We talk about our decision regarding Katniss on the farm and why / how we got to that decision.  It's been hot and the pigs have been managing it as we head into weaning time. The broilers are enjoying the pasture more than Farmer Andy is and the chickens in the "chick wagon" are now enjoying foraging outside.  We talk a little about the electric netting use this year to "secure" the pens and how it's been working out so far. We also talk about our new tumbler composter. In the Veggie Patch we talk about the tomato ICU we set up after the extraordinary rains caused a bunch of losses.  Remember when we had our last farming "Remember When" segment? That's OK, we don't either. This week's remember when talks about the things listeners have asked and we keep forgetting to give updates about.  We talk about our concrete pig waterer, that chick wagon post to our blog that never got done and an update about Nugget the chicken.
6/26/201345 minutes, 5 seconds
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075 Soggy farm pastures, waterlogged tomato plants in the garden, judging a farm as a consumer

In our updates this week we lament about the nedless rain on the farm, the wet pastures and the sorggy gardens.  Our pigs have even taken to finding new places to walk and eat since thing sare so muddy. On the upside we have a lot of them sold with our pre-order process. We took advantage of a break i nthe rain to get the pastured broilers out and the pens are moving across fresh (but wet) ground. In the vegetable garden the tomatoes have not been so happy about the endless rains but the greens are gowing like weeds - absloute extremes in the garden for sure. This week we also ruminate around a great question from one of our listeners about how you know you can / should trust the quality of a local farm based on things you see on the surface.  Does a dirty farm mean a bad farm? How do you know how a farm operates? Som really good questions posed and we we talk through the question at hand.
6/19/201345 minutes, 47 seconds
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074 Egg eating chicken, waterlogged vegetable garden, building a greenhouse for your farm

This week on the farm has been marked by more rain than we need - over 2" above average for the month.  Becasue of that we have been trying to find a time to get those Cornish X chickens out to pasture.  We also discovered an old layer hen that the weather made blue - so she started eating eggs.  On the piglet front we have noticed a big differnce in sow nursing capacity Katniss vs Hermione nursing 6vs 11. Part of farming is then selling the good you raised - so we talk a little about the pork ordering and our approach this year.  We also talk about the gardens and the rain... and the fact we have decided to start the vegetable CSA this year (remember to check out every Tuesday on the Farm Blog for the latest fresh in-season vegetable recipes!) In the CoopCast Community we field an indepth question about the decisions behind our greenhouse.  We answer the questions about why we chose a dirt floor vs cement. Extra heat vs. no heat. And home built vs manufactured.
6/12/201347 minutes, 55 seconds
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073 Hog heritage on the farm, starting the CSA, managing the garden and succession planting

Updates this week include a discussion about the new piglets and the genetics / lineage in them and what decisions we migth be making in the comming months.  We talk about the Cornish X broilers and the efforts to line up chicken helpers for the July processing day.  The heritage turkeys are doing well in the brooder and Farmer Andy loves the chick wagon - dreaming of a farm of all mobile wagons. In the Veggie Patch segment we wander all over the gardens - from the greenhosue to the pasture to our haying operations.  We also share some of Farmer Kelli's tips and tricks; like using a whiteboard for lists, using an iPhone for lists, using scraps of papers for lists and then making lists of lists of things to put on lists on the farm!  Things like using a pencil to write on old mini-blind tags, the usage of mulching and how we are going to try and maximize our broiler fertilizer this year. This coopcast is a little crazy - just like life on the farm!
6/5/201352 minutes, 42 seconds
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072 Piglet mania! (and turkeys and chickens too), Memorial Day pistol range time, row covers in the garden

With the farrowing behind us this week we can talk about the 17 piglets running around the pasture and the mayhem that ensues!  Mama pigs are doing great and we also share the final castration update for the season as we finish off that chore.  We also talk about the broiler chickens that are here.  Our Cornish X chicks arrived early and we're not ready!! In the CoopCast Community we give a nice thank you to our listeners who helped us by sharing their experience and letting us know we were not alone.  It was a cool feeling!  We also mention a great comment from a US Veteran on our Memorial Day post on Facebook. Ohh, Andy shares a gun range story about some not so savvy pistol shooting (smack talk - the shooting was great!). Finally we tour the veggie patch and talk about row covers and hoops.  Kelli shares some of the pros: Protect from cold sun and bugs, Better growth on some stuff and some of the cons: Hard to see in-Need to check in on plants, Blowing off, Getting torn
5/29/201353 minutes, 16 seconds
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071 A sow in distress while farrowing on the farm, piglet castration and temperature extremes in the vegetable garden

This has been a week of extreme conditions on the farm physically as well as one of the most emotionally challenging weeks of farming yet.  The vegetables have had to deal with a freeze of 28F one day and 90+ a few days later... any way you look at that, it's a challenge.  On top of the wild weather we had to navigate piglet castration when the mama wants nothing to do with humans and icing on the cake was a proven sow who has issues while farrowing and needed help delivering 8 more piglets! While we try and keep it clean it's been exhausting and the description of farrowing a castration topics made us thing the "use caution around small children" label was appropriate for the "more sensitive" listeners. One resource we mention in this episode is the Perdue livestock "Difficult pig farrowing" guide here -  Anyone who ever said farming was easy should live a week like this then come back and see us :)
5/22/20131 hour, 3 minutes, 45 seconds
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070 A discussion about pastured pig farrowing and an agressive sow

This was a busy week on the farm.  In fact, we don't even have time to talk about the vegetable gardening this week!  Our gilt, Katniss, farrowed her first litter of pigs and we take you through the experience from noticing her first signs of farrowing all the way through dealing with mom and piglets post-farrowing.  We reflect on this farrowing experience versus our first farrowing with our sow last year - and there's quite a difference!   Share in our joy and disappointment as we deal with an aggressively protective mom and how that behavior is affecting our ability to care for the animals.  We await the next farrowing coming later in the week.  We also briefly touch on the arrival of turkey poults and egg layer chicks this week as well.
5/16/201344 minutes, 13 seconds
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069 Preparing for hog farrowing, farm interns, GMO's that are good for you

This week we talk about our new YouTube series we will be publishing over the next several months called "".  We set up some new fencing for the pigs and Andy longs for more permanent fences on the farm. We are getting ready for piglet farrowing in the next week and we talk a little about the new pig waterer we built. We briefly stop by the veggie patch to talk gardening and asparagus and raspberry plants. The CoopCast Community has a followup on the "Milk Rant" from CoopCast 067 and the listener response in CoopCast 068.  We also respond to a suggestion from a listener regarding farm tours and interns. This weeks concludes with a Rumination about GMO's.  We challenge the listener to consider that the concept of a GMO is not categorically bad - there are some really good things that come from GMO's in the world and we touch on a few of them.
5/9/201350 minutes, 16 seconds
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068 Vegetable Gardening begins, a top secret farming project, how to find GMO's in your food

Things around the farm have been getting busy as the vegetable gardening season is off to is start.  Finally we have the peas planted - sugar snap and snow so far.  We have also been picking from the asparagus patch and enjoying some fresh spring vegetables. We talk about a trip to the Amish greenhouse and Amish WalMart.  At the same time we have been fighting rats in the barn with increasing urgency as we are just a few weeks away from chicks and poults brooding in the barn.Then in the CoopCast Community we tease a little bit about the fact we are building something that we hope will really help out on the farm...  to see what it is check out our Facebook page.  We talk about some "quiet criticism" our last CoopCast received and rant a little.  We also answer Luke's question about owning vs buying pigs for meat production.Finally we conclude with a Farm U all about GMO's and the testing of food for the presence of genetically modified organisms.  This segment is not opinion or discussion based noise about GMO's rather a factual "from the lab" discussion of how Dr. Farmer Kelli is actually testing foods for GMO corn and soy.
5/2/201352 minutes, 40 seconds
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067 Worm Worshiping Hippies, vegetable gardening and soil blocks, farm transparency vs the farmers privacy

This weeks farming updates show that things are quickly picking up speed as spring marches on.  We started last week offering our pastured broilers up for sale and had them all accounted for in 2 days.  We also have been fixing some of our permanent fencing that winter was not kind to.  As part of the fencing work we opened a spring pasture for the pigs and will be moving them for farrowing in another week or so.  Updates include a quick stop in the vegetable garden section of the farm where we have been busy making soil blocks and starting seeds in the greenhouse.  Up next is actually getting peas planted in the garden!The CoopCast Community this week is a rapid fire segment...  Where we discuss how "nice" it was that some of the Boston police brought a homeowner with children some milk...We respond to a listener that asked about the new names the pork and beef producers are putting on meat.#farmerandy riffs on customers who ask the question "is there soy in your feed".Brent from CT is happy we aren't "worm worshipping hippies" and so are we.And Jon pointed out that  taping farm cruelty is now a crime here in NY.Our final segment is a Rumination on balancing transparency with privacy.  Where do you draw the line when you farm is also your home?  It's a more difficult question than you might think.
4/24/201352 minutes, 21 seconds
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066 Pasture chicken orders, Diagnosing a sick pig, Disease resistance and breeding

This weeks farming updates include a lot of rain and finally a little warmth.  We were about to get the snow fence down and watch the pastures start to turn a little green.  We started allowing customers to pre-order pastured chickens this week and we are almost already sold out.  We found a dead chicken in the coop...  looks like a heart attack.  In the green house we have been potting up tomatoes and making soil blocks.The Farmers Choice segment this week answers the question we posed in CoopCast 065 about how do manage a sick pig. In the segment we:Follow up on pig illnessShare some of the thoughts our listeners had like call vet, ask Walter, check poopShare what the farmers did which included emailed Walter, posted on boards, called who we bought from, talked to large animal vetWe found that the Pigsite and Merck vet manual were quite helpfulPenicillin and tetracycline - when antibiotics and the farm work together.In a Farm U segment we talk about the notion out there that you can "breed resistance" to disease into your animals and how that's not really accurate.Resistance to disease/ building a better herd has a role in breeding but genetics isn't the whole story.  The stauts of host- Nutrition, stress, normal flora, etc all impact the likelihood of an animal getting sick when exposed to the pathogen.  In most cases it's less about genetics and "resistance" and more about infectious dose of the organism.
4/18/201356 minutes, 32 seconds
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065 Benefits of a mobile chicken coop, seedlings in the greenhouse, a case study on sick pigs

Our farming updates this week suggest that maybe just a little Spring is on the way here at Chicken Thistle Farm. We took some time to clean out the chick wagon. We have also spent some time cleaning up the asparagus patch and getting the greenhouse ready for some seedlings. Then there's an update on the pigs and their gestation progress. We then move to the Veggie Patch and talk a little vegetable gardening as the seasons slowly turn. We talk seedlings, seed starting and soil blocks. Getting things ready in the greenhouse is a challenge as it seems to have been taken over by rodents following the cold winter. We also answer a few questions about starting peas in the springtime garden and discuss our seed starting worksheet in our project library on the website. Our last segment is The Farmers Choice where this week we share part of the story of when one of our pigs went down sick and ask you, the aspiring farmer, what would YOU do?
4/10/201349 minutes, 46 seconds
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064 Puppy on the farm, April Fools Farming, Pastured Chicken Pricing and the Monsanto Protection Act

Our farming updates this week include several things.  Like the new animal on the farm, our new Border Terrier puppy Cricket.  The Brother to Watson. (get it?).  Kelli shares her adventures from last week while Andy was away on business and the "while traveling" farm emergency she had to manage.  We complain about the fact it's early April and there's still snow on the ground.  We also have a discussion around pricing your products (pastured meats and other naturally farmed goods) and making sure you ask what you should be getting.  A little farm marketing advice about how discounting your brand isn't a good idea. If you haven't check us out on Facebook, Twitter or our web site...  the fact is we are NOT raising Ostriches or Gators...  that was an April Fools joke. The "In the News" segment we talk about the big uproar in the media about the fact that dairy producers want to add sweeteners to their milk and be held to the same labeling standards as the rest of the beverage industry (gasp).  Then we turn our attention to the "Monsanto Protection Act" and not so much about how it will impact food safety but rather from a bigger picture of how government behaving like this isn't necessarily in the best interest of it's citizens.  "Monsanto Protection Act" primer -
4/3/201350 minutes, 11 seconds
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063 Running a farm while on vacation, taking care of new chicks, Ractopamine in pork

This week our farming podcast talks about how we (the farmers) manage to get away on a vaction while entrusting the farm to capable hands. Who says farming needs to be all work and no play. There's a set of steps we undergo to ensure the farm is ready to be watched and we share a bunch of those. We share our story about a farmers market we visited while on vacation in sunny Florida.  It was interesting for us to deal with how the farmer becomes the consumer. There's a new segment this week called "Remember When"... where we talk about how we start off little chicks to grow them into healthy birds. Finally, our last segment this week is an "In the News" where we discuss how China, Russia and otehr countries have banned the import of a bunch of US raised meats because of the usage of a chemical called Ractopamine.
3/27/201354 minutes, 47 seconds
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062 Washing farmstead eggs, managing pigs in the mud and new farm questions

This weeks farming updates include our final decision on how we are managing our turkey order of midget white and Bourbon reds in the coming farming season.  We talk about moving a pig feeder to get it out of the swampy mud the spring has brought and finally we are starting some seeds for the vegetable garden.In the CoopCast Community we answer a question about washing eggs.  We also followup on the geothermal system and how it's been working through the first real winter it's been online. Finally we spend some time on the farm with a rumination pertaining to the questions we often get from new farmers.We often are asked about advice and information with regards to getting into farming.  One thing that we have seen very often when talking with upstart farmers is sometimes they ask questions that they don't want the answer to.
3/21/201349 minutes, 36 seconds
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061 Mud season on the farm, Farming and being sick and some listener based rants

This week's farm update were kind of all over the place since we missed an episode last week with #farmerandy being down for the count with a nasty lung bug.  We talk about sickness on the farm when it's NOT an animial but a farmer, living through mud season on the farm and dealing with mud and pigs.  We hase how the chickens onf the farm are doing with the Spring thaw and chickens and the challenges with their coop and netting and muddy eggs. In the Coopcast community this week we spend some time raging in general... must be the sickness and/or the drugs.  We respond about a post where some folks were worrying about the CoopCast podfading away...  We spend some time answering listener questions about a modibe pig tractor in Grit magazine and some other questions about chicken pasture pens.  Sorry all you iTunes reviewers - no drama like high speed chases this week!
3/12/201348 minutes, 2 seconds
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060 Farm finances (income and expenses), a listener helps pigs farrow, chickens have been ordered

Farming updates this week: Our Facebook page hit 1000+ fans - thanks so much! Chicken orders done for the 2013 farming season Turkey decision still pending In the CoopCast Community: Mark sent us some seeds! Josh helps a neighbor pig rescue in his farming adventures Suggestions posted on FB - for pasture pen plans Kelli's visit to CSA fair Ruminations continue about farm finances: Farm finances continued as we discuss some of the specifics of expenses and income on the small farm Using QuickBooks and a farm credit card
2/28/201358 minutes, 54 seconds
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059 Farming updates for the week, Starting your own CSA, Small Farm Finances

Farming updates for the week include: Updates AI - no more updates needed, Due dates on calendar Chick Wagon Hay/straw delivery CSA full A new segment called "From the ground up" where we discuss the basics for any given project or enterprise on the farm and what we would do to do it again.  THis week we talk about how we would go about starting a CSA Pictures posted of the shares Surveys  Reviews  How to get people to invest that much Make it a community with recipes, posts each week Host events at the farm- potluck, etc.  What to expect and communicate a lot Questions, Conversations and Ruminations this week (and for a few weeks) are a in depth review and discussion around the farm finances. Income Expenses
2/20/20131 hour, 3 minutes, 47 seconds
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058 Farming in a big snow storm, farm finances, small farm tractors

Updates from around the farm: AI update - no heat for Katniss Checking Herm this week Snow storm - closed off extended pasture; ran extra line Round bales - more $ and hard to get Farm census Taxes and a financial look back at past year- upcoming discussions A simple soil block question This week we have a Farm U discussion around TRACTORS! How much horsepower for diffrnt jobs What is the right type of transmission Confusion Solution for hydraulics
2/14/201349 minutes, 22 seconds
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057 Farm updates, vegetable garden seed planning, evaluating our role in the sustainable food movement

Farm updates this week include: More AI talk- gator sound needed Katniss heat check this week Day 12 Cold weather continues Super Bowl = good food from the farm Chicken sitting-new chick wagon & lil eggs Veggie patch, our vegetable gardening segment we talk: New varieties we're trying this year Seed organization CSA email out to old members- did raise price Farmers choice segment talks abous our value (or lack there of) in the natural food movement: Our role/value in the food movement Not big, not trying to grow big, not trying to make a living solely from farming- so what value can we bring? Advice on farming abounds and can be annoying.
2/5/201353 minutes, 15 seconds
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056 Swine Artificial Insemination, Garden seed orders, farm fence questions

Farm updates this week include: Hermione AI Seed order in CSA - email to current customers Chicken trailer update Bogs boots update In the "Extended" CoopCast Community" Song used last episode The Facebook discussion of the picture of Hermione w/ Andy and Katniss in back Questions about fencing Feeding pigs "bad" milk Patti and others - how to know if AI worked Heather and Danielle - couples listening
1/29/201355 minutes, 35 seconds
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055 Artificial Insemination of Pastured Pigs and Farming Infrastructure in 2013

This week's coopcast has a weather update about a big windstom that caused some damage but spends most of it's time talking about the artifical insemination process we followed with our gilt Katiniss and what worked / dindn't as well as what we learned about doing AI on the farm. Part 3 of the Farm Meeting discusses the general palns around infrastructure this year and why we made some decisions we did about growtih or processes in 2013.
1/21/201358 minutes, 12 seconds
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054 - Egg prices, the farm plan for turkeys and building a mobile chicken coop

The updates in farming this week include: A Big thaw Planning for artificial insemination with the pigs Finally raised egg prices to $4 / dozen Kelli shares a listener requested update on her Bogs Boots Freezer inventory fun This is part 2 of the Annual Farm Meeting: A pending plan for turkeys The chicken succession plan Purchase and project in support of the Chicken Plan Breeds that we will be replacing the flock with and why
1/17/201347 minutes, 51 seconds
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053 Pig on the lamb, snow and portable farming, annual farm meeting (part 1)

Updates around the snowy and cold farm: Snow and drifting on the farm and the implications to portable fencing Pigs on the loose Electric netting - upright again Chickens in the wind Greenhouse - salad for new years eve, peas, Swiss chard and a warm refuge The Annual Farm Meeting Farm Meeting for 2013 - Part 1 We discussed if we will be doing a CSA this year and the size, The Pig plan and AI, Laying chickens (more on this one next week) The plan for broiler chickens this summer General "farming burnout" that we are trying to avoid
1/9/201349 minutes, 46 seconds
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052 Christmas on the farm, farming in the northern winters, choosing a CSA

Our Post-Christmas, pre New Year 52nd, one year celebration episode. This week's updates include: Christmas on the farm - yum Let it snow, we say, with over 2 feet and counting... Preparing for the snow - round bales to the rescue Dealing with the fence lines in snow Placement of winter paddock fencing - room for improvement Chickens and snow In the Coopcast Community: Listener Bill shares his bad experience with CSA's and trying again One of our first listener Jeph talks about getting to eat an egg from Nugget! Frank want's to know about any automation on the farm
12/29/201248 minutes, 20 seconds
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051 Farming with #elfonafarm, The 2nd Amendment on a farm, feed storage

Updates this week include: #elfonafarm - visit our  to follow the adventures of one of Santa's Helpers on a farm. Weather - is this December? Haven't moved pigs to want area yet - fencing ready to go Rats in barn And a listener update from Adam about those VT college oxen This week in the news we share some thoughts about the horrific tragedy in CT and try to provide some facts about the gun control debate Guns - banning guns and they types of firearms Gun control in New York State Guns on a farm This episodes Farm U talks about feed storage Why rodents are bad Best practices for small farm feed storage What to do if a rodent gets into your feed
12/19/201247 minutes, 52 seconds
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050 Winter and farm fresh eggs, listeners favorite farming things, hybrid or heritage laying chicken

Updates from around the farm: Chickens - they love the round bales in their area for winter Lower egg production - no heat lamp Pigs- not in winter paddock yet- no real snowfall Cat in a hoop house Snow fence is up- why do we hate doing that so much? In the CoopCast Community Gaertagang Farm- Bogs boots Maple View Farm- Overalls Nicole- favorite podcasts and online tools Homemade gift idea- seeds or help starting a garden This week's Farmers Choice is a discussion on different egg layer breeds What we like and don't about: Barred Rock, Speckled Sussex, Buff Rock, California, Golden Comet, Rhode Island Red, and Tetra Tint
12/12/201242 minutes, 5 seconds
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049 Farming favorite things (A Christmas list for farmers)

In this episode we share several of our favorite things from our farm.  From pasture to plate we talk about big and small farming items that we like and that make farming easier for us to manage things. This episode is a departure from the typical farm updates and other discussions and we hope you enjoy it!
12/5/201254 minutes, 23 seconds
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048 Heritage turkey from pasture to plate, vegetable gardens best tomatoes, worming pigs

This "longer than usual" CoopCast includes... Updates from around the farm: Heritage Turkey for Thanksgiving - yum!!!! Losing a chicken and a farmers "instincts" Prepping for winter by moving chicken fencing (poultry netting) and pig fencing A trip to the cold Veggie Patch to discuss some HOT tomato choices: Review of our top 2012 tomato varieties A brief lesson on determinate and indeterminate tomato plants as well as heirloom and hybrid. In the CoopCast Community Josie asked about worming pigs? Lots of people have been asking "when is sign up for X, Y or Z"?
11/28/20121 hour, 3 minutes, 35 seconds
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047 Ordering pastured turkeys, Thanksgiving on the farm, eating healthy tastes bad

This coopcast is a bit of Thanksgiving fun with the theme of "plate" (from pasture to plate) running through the segments.  So pull up a chair, have a seat on the farm and join us for a Thanksgiving discussion! Farm updates: Customer looking for pastured turkeys the week before Thanksgiving, Pig fencing takes a hit from deer,  General farm updates CoopCast Community: We just talk more about food... and answer a question from Josh about our breakfasts. Farmers Choice: We discuss food... In particular how we have noticed that eating good food from the store never seems to taste very good.  Can healthy food taste good?
11/20/201234 minutes, 15 seconds
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046 Prepping the farm for winter, poultry netting recommendations, the difference in processing turkeys

Updates this week on the farm include: Winter prep continues - fencing for winter paddock and the trouble with fencing in the fall, Tomatoes out of greenhouse after a really hard freeze, Moved pig feeder out of the mud In the CoopCast Community Prop 37 - didn't pass - is it all about business! Mackaenzie shares a tip to make your Facebook faned pages visible Question on our recipes, Robert asked about our recommendations on poultry netting. Farm U Was inspired by a question from Stuart: What are the differences in processing chickens and turkeys?
11/13/201254 minutes, 27 seconds
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045 Farm prepping for a hurricane, a GMO documentary, eating nutrient dense foods

Farming Updates in what seems like a farming soap opera: We were away from our farm when hurricane Sandy came through Being prepared for disasters Lessons from this event Here's the  In the CoopCast Community  Response to a blog post about the cost of raising pigs  GMO discussion feedback  Ernest shared a link to a documentary on GMOs Melanie shared her dream product - In this weeks Farmers Choice : People always talk about wanting to "eat healthy" but what does that really mean?  How do you really measure healthy? Eating healthy and the definition Nutrient dense food and the difference
11/6/201247 minutes, 45 seconds
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044 Planting Fall garlic and Proposition 37 and GMO's

Just a few Farmining Updates this week: Garlic planting and our technique, A root cellar full of goodies, Our youngest gilt is in heat - Ollie traits! In the news we discuss Proposition 37 and GMO's: Opinions on Prop 37 and GMOs in general Labeling requirement? What is a GMO? For or against GMOs? Natural selection and pesticide use
10/29/201236 minutes, 56 seconds
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043 Putting the vegetable garden to bed, late season farming, how to cook a heritage turkey

Updates from around the farmstead: #farmerandy shares his Big Buck story of dispair, We put the veggie patch to bed with compost and the rototiller, Pigs moved to a new section of pasture, Pig pasture maintenance and seeding on the old pasture, From the pasture to the plate we talk about canning chicken in the pressure cooker, Final sales of year and the risk to cash flow In the CoopCast community: We talk about cooking a heritage turkey (, A listener who didn't know he could raise his chickens on pasture, Some general listener feedback items from Facebook, iTunes and Stitcher. In the news: We talk about a non-functioning pair of oxen in Vermont and what should happen with them:
10/23/201243 minutes, 29 seconds
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042 Fall farming updates from livestock to vegetable gardens and a discussion about farmer and consumer commitment

Updates around the farm include: We were featured on Libsyn's Rockin New Podcasts! - The growing season is officially over with a hard freeze last week, We finished turkeys by processing the last of the Midget White Turkeys, We got our municipal water bill from over the drought months (WOW), Winter preparations are ongoing including cleaning out the chicken coop and starting to put the vegetable garden to bed, Farm stand review for the year. This week we are having 2 related farmers choice segments about commitment: From the farmers side, what levels of commitment are required to your livestock, land and customers?  We talk about this in relation to a listener email about his journey into becoming a farmer. From the consumer side, what and why are you committed to a farm or farmer? And how do your actions speak louder than your words when it comes to demonstrating that commitment? (This episode was recorded on the eve of our 13th wedding anniversary, hence the commitment theme!)
10/16/201257 minutes, 44 seconds
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041 Turkey vs Fox, rendering lard on the homestead, farming in the news

This weeks farm updates: Special announcement is we are going to be a featured podcast on Libsyn's  blog of up-and-comers on October 15th! Pork pickup - happy customers and farmers - yummy pork too! Hermione and Katniss are getting along just smashingly Turkey vs Fox story (a win for the good guys) We eat good - soup - add greens - yum! In the CoopCast Community: Business info posting on Facebook - Gift from listener - A "postivie" review, maybe, says she can't go to sleep without our voices - hmmmmm!?  And National Lard Rendering Month, maybe? In the News: Pig farmer eaten by his pigs Farm out of business
10/9/201251 minutes, 29 seconds
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040 Taking respected animals from the farm to the processor, early Autumn vegetable gardens, winter and farming

Even though it's early Autumn we have still been busy farming this week! Updates from around the farm this week include: Taking the last of the pastured pigs to processor and deciding who was going to stay with us! We touch again on the difficulty of sending respected animals to the processor, Getting ready for pork pickup with customers as the meat comes back from the processor, Dealing with turkeys - everywhere. We take a muddy stroll through the veggie patch: CSA is done but still harvesting, Late planting reviews and opinions: zucchini, beans, lettuce, bok choy, Dried bean update, Greenhouse plantings update. In the CoopCast community: Jennifer asked about feeding candy to cows, Constance wanted an update on the poison ivy drops (Oral Ivy), Chad was wondering what we do to winterize farm (waterer, shelter bedding) right now: coop, winter paddock for pigs
10/2/201254 minutes, 35 seconds
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039 Farm updates as we head into fall, taking some pastured pigs to the USDA processor, poultry processing workshop

Updates from around the farm: We got some of our pigs to processor and share our feelings on that. Turkey processing of the first batch Frost Warning! In the Coopcast Community Vivianne shares her experiences raising cornish cross and shares that on her blog. Adalyn Farms shared with us as well and has Kelli wanting a dwarf goat. Paul asked some specific business questions about  a farm corporation, LLC, insurance etc and we discuss why we don't answer those questions very well. John was afraid we were deleting his Facebook post and had some questions about a sleepy rooster and some bad advice he was given. This weeks Farm U (part 2 of Chicken Processing) Poultry Processing Our set up: what we have and our line set up Some general comments about our HACCP procedures
9/24/201259 minutes, 6 seconds
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038 Farming updates, garden raised potatoes (above ground), chicken and poultry processing

This weeks farm updates include: A discussion about pork cut sheets and pig preparations Turkey processing starting next weekend Egg layers- who's laying? Dealing with  older chickens and refreshing our flock Last week of CSA Greenhouse - looking good In the Veggie Patch: Our potato results! Do it yourself- note pesticide levels in store bought potatoes Farm U: Chicken Processing This is the first part in a series of Farm U's talking about chicken processing. Equipment and set up, what do you need as the basics to start processing chickens What to buy vs not buy in a basic setup
9/17/201248 minutes, 53 seconds
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037 Happy pastured pigs on the farm, vegetable garden tomato blights, pay farming forward (pasture care and seeding for feeding)

We try out a new intro on this weeks show based on a listener iTunes review... Farming Updates this week include: Pigs on new pasture was an easy move, Making a swale for their wallow, New hog feeder feeder in use, Update on O2's limp, Selecting a gilt to keep - what is good conformation? Pork cut sheet designed, Turkey processing dates picked, Turkey ordering form sent out, CSA is ending in 2 weeks. In the Veggie Patch: We talk tomatoes and blight.  What is it, how do you identify it and what can you do about it? In Farm U: We discuss what we are doing to manage pasture spaces after moving pigs off of them.
9/9/201251 minutes, 6 seconds
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036 Farming with regulations, food safety and honey, BPA in plastics and avoiding it while preserving food from the garden

This Labor Day week we have a shorter version full of fun filled farming listener feedback! In the CoopCast Community: A comment from a listener Susan P about her struggling small farm and challenges with regulations, Lucinda asked many questions about chickens, Laurie askes about food saftey and honey. Then on the In the News Segement: We discuss a recent scientific study about BPA
9/5/201231 minutes, 29 seconds
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035 Farm equipment finds on craigslist, fall vegetable garden succession planting, the business of farming full time

Updates around the farm this week: Our Daycation here in NY, A new to us hog feeder, O2 and his bum leg, Turkey ordering, prepping greenhouse for fall. In the Veggie Patch: Fall Succession planting update in the garden and in the greenhouse, CSA spotlight - Edamame. In the CoopCast Community:We get mentioned on some blogs ( and ) where they say we are a good farming podcast - COOL! And we bundle a bunch of reviews and questions together from the community to have a conversation... We ruminate about going full time as a farmer and answer the following questions (from James and "farmer on hiatus", amongst others): Is our aim to do this full time? How much land do we have? DO we want farming as primary occupation? Are we "Big enough to sustain" our farm?
8/26/201252 minutes, 18 seconds
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034 Greenhouse gardening and soil fertility, growing livestock feed on your farm, preventing Botulism when canning vegetables

A update light week on the farm with: No poultry pens to move, Normal weather for a change on the farm, Turkeys and layers doing well, Pigs have their first weigh in. In the Veggie Patch we talk: Greenhouse soil fertility and design, Low tunnel greenhouses you can build, End of garden season discounts. In the Coopcast Community: On a listeners suggestion Andy is trying Oral Ivy. Sheree asked about growing grain for chickens and supplementing them with veggies/greens from the garden. Brice suggested we invest in some livestock guardian dogs. In this weeks Farm U we learn about the science behind preventing Botulism when canning vegetables.The bacteria lives in all soils and we talk about terms relating to it and defeating it when canning: Spores Anaerobe Soil Pressure and temp pH
8/20/201250 minutes, 2 seconds
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033 A great farm animal becomes sausage, growing potatoes in the vegetable garden, getting attached to livestock when farming

Updates this week on the farm: We learned that Ollie is no more on the farm we took him to, Hay and livestock trailer, The seasons final chicken processing, 5 gallon bucket waterer gauge, And a question - what makes you happy when farming? In the Veggie Patch: Tomatoes and canning, Succession planting, We discuss the results of the above ground potato growing method (from coopcast 014) Questions, Conversations and Ruminations: We get asked all the time "Don't you get attached to your animals?" Can you care about the animals you eat for meat?  Is it better to not like them?  Is that why we've gone to a system of mistreatment?
8/13/201251 minutes, 57 seconds
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032 Successfully moving our sow to pasture, storm damage on the farm, antibiotics in livestock and their meat

This weeks updates include: Hermione's move to the pasture reuniting her with her piglets, Club station cool (what is it)... a shade cloth shelter for pigs when there is no other shade around, We are sold out of pork and share some lessons on ordering / selling pork halves, Chicken processing coming up next weekend, Weather has been hot and dry and the rain has come with a price, Shattered window and shredded turkey shelter. A new segment called The Veggie Patch focuses on the vegetable gardens and gardening techniques we use (because you, the listeners asked for it!) Tomato planting, labels and harvesting, Basil planting techniques in northern climates Farm U inspired by a listener comment on the use of antibiotics on the farm. Is the meat tainted? Why don't you want antibiotics used in livestock What constitutes safe or good use of antibiotics on a farm?
8/5/201245 minutes, 8 seconds
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031 Moving pigs to pasture, inspiring a homestead, farming choices and antibiotics

It finally rained some, Turkeys enjoying life on the lawn / pasture, A successful pig move Building a holding paddock / corral in pasture, using the livestock trailer correctly, ready with food to distract and lure,  singing the praises of homemade sorting boards! In the CoopCast Community: Dive_wombat - emailed a very interesting article along from down under about chicken prices as a result of the US drought Email and package from Steve in VA with a nifty system to monitor water bucket levels buckets The Stewart Homestead had a bit of their homesteading inspired by our talk of Cornish X chickens and pigs. The Farmers Choice - We had a pig with a problem.  What do we do? What is it the issue when a pig hold it's head to the side and shakes it and what to do and when to do it? Judging and transparency in the natural farm community leaves a lot to be desired. Hear our discussions about what our choices was and why, as well as the details about how we managed the situation and administered antibiotics orally to a pig.
7/31/201249 minutes, 14 seconds
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030 Dual duty pastured turkeys, marketing your farm, building a root cellar

Fertilizing the lawn with pastured turkeys, We have the barn back and are busy drying garlic, 9 weeks and less than .25" of rain, TOTAL, Nugget, Snowflake and nameless are growing up, Hermione is in heat again and piglets are ready for a move, We eat good: Bruschetta recipe 1 loaf fresh baguette or Italian bread 2-3 different fresh picked tomatoes 2-3 T good olive oil 2-3 cloves garlic (mashed) 3-4 springs each of fresh oregano, basil and parsley all chopped fine Fresh cracked black pepper and salt to taste (optional) fresh grated hard Italian cheese (your choice) In a bowl combine all ingredients and stir together. Cut bread into slices. Spray with olive oil and place on a medium hot grill until grill marks appear. Spray exposed side of bread with more olive oil and flip.  Immediately place heaping spoonfuls of tomato mixture on the bread and close the grill cover for about 2-3 minutes.  Remove and consume with beer, wine or cold ice tea! In the CoopCast community: Lisa asks about managing problems with raccoons in corn, Austin is interested in our methods of marketing and growing our small farm, Melanie has a BUNCH of farm business questions which we touch on but will cover more of in the future, Another question about starting a CSA. On this episodes Farm U: Building your very own root cellar is a lot easier than you think Building Location, location, location Humidity Temperature Storage Options
7/24/201247 minutes, 28 seconds
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029 Pastured poultry processing day and the challenges of vegetable gardening in endless heat and no rain

This weeks Farm Updates: Endless heat and no rain at all, What's the impact of this weather on our gardens, our animals and the nations food supply. Pigs and turkeys, Kelli loves the greenhouse (and all the garden spiders) We had one of our big chicken processing days Questions, Conversations and Ruminations Although it's one of the days of hardest work on the farm we find chicken processing days very rewarding.  In this segment we share some of our thoughts as we reflect back on the first chicken processing day of 2012
7/17/201245 minutes, 40 seconds
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028 Sow in heat, predator attack on pastured chickens, Agribon hoops / low tunnels in hot weather

Around the farm and gardens: Hermione's standing heat and hormones, Piglets are bigger than piglets now, Predator attack on the Cornish X birds in the pasture, Lost 3 birds and now the defense plan Preparing for 1st chicken processing event next weekend Coopcast Community / Farm U: Susan I. asked: why wean piglets and not just let mama do it? Holly wanted to know what we feed our pigs? Scout wants to know about the low tunnels we use in the garden: Which type of Agribon do you use? Are you primarily using it for pest control or do you have the type that provides frost protection as well? Do you use the manufactured hoops to support it above your plants or are you using some other method? 
7/9/201247 minutes, 42 seconds
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027 Weaning pastured pigs (mistakes and success), a dry farm is looking for rain, questions about chickens, hens and a rooster

A very Happy 4th of July to all our listeners (or Canada Day), folks listening in the UK...  sorry :) Around the farm: Not normal weather for sure. Very hot but the gardens are surviving Rabbits under hoop the hoop Chickens on pasture get processed in 2 weeks Chicks and turkeys in the brooders are doing well Pigs - a very special weaning story What we did that was wrong in terms of setup, planning and moving large animals What we did that was right and that we would do again when weaning piglets What we did that was desperate and stupid What we would never do again because being smarter would let us avoid that CoopCast Community: An iTunes review where a listener is going to make some simple changes for healthier chicks and pigs Stewart Homestead likes Andy's humor (and thinks this should be a comedy podcast, ok, not really, Andy added that) but they ARE going to try Cornish chickens and their own pigs Plants between the rocks said this podcast is a "Skillful blending of planning implementing and evaluating", and we decided they are listening to another podcast and accidentally commented on us! MikeE on Facebook posed a question about a rooster when his neighbors are not fans. A plea to remind us of topics we said we would talk about but have forgotten about!
7/1/201248 minutes, 48 seconds
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026 Growing cold weather crops in summer heat on the farm, predators in chicken pasture, common sense and research in farming

Updates around the farm and gardens: How to keep cool weather crops happy when it's always over 90F, Keeping broilers cool in the pasture with box fans, Predators and pastured poultry, Still weaning the pigs, Thinking about moving the turkeys out sooner. This weeks DOUBLE FEATURE Farmers Choice: Conventional farming isn't all bad so don't treat it that way, The difference between researching and just confirming your opinion.
6/24/201246 minutes, 34 seconds
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025 Moving broiler chickens to the pasture, bolting vegetables in the gardens (gardening in the heat), stress of farming

This week’s updates around the farm and gardens: First batch of broiler chickens moved out to pasture, Pig updates, Turkey updates, The new garden shed, Summer heat in spring and its impact on the gardens and the CSA. This weeks Rumination: Stress of the "uncontrolled" world of farming, How to manage the unexpected and being overwhelmed. This week on Farm U: Moving broilers to the pasture, Getting the chicks comfortable in their new environment, Tips and tricks to making the move to pasture easier and less stressful on the chickens.
6/19/201249 minutes, 9 seconds
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024 Picking local farm grown strawberries and preserving, ice for chicken processing, vegetable CSA has begun!

This week’s updates around the farm and gardens: CSA started and the veggies look great, More unexpected hot weather, Chicken-scaping the front pasture, Preparing to move the Cornish Cross (Cornish X) out to pasture this year, Weaning piglets, Enjoying strawberries pasture to plate. In the Coopcast Community: A listener with guinea keets, Zach processed his first birds and Chad offers a tip on ice for processing, Someone listened to us and bought a geothermal system! Eddie is looking for tips on getting started. This week on Farm U: The magic in preserving strawberries, General food preservation discussions (Kelli's favorite website for preserving food : )
6/10/201249 minutes, 59 seconds
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023 Planting the vegetable gardens, injured chicks, humane treatment of animals / livestock, building a chicken brooder

This week’s updates around the farm and gardens: Piglets getting porked up; getting names and getting weaned, New layer chickens now in coop with the rest of the flock, Cornish X chicks in the brooder had some pecking issues, Managing hurt chickens and turkeys, New brooder for turkeys, Veggies planted, seeds planted, mulching has begun - the gardens are in, CSA starting this week! In the News: Factory farm and its treatment of animals - Baby chicks made 300 people sick over 8 years - ohh the horror - CDC Report on foodborne Salmonella numbers - This week on Farm U: Building a chicken brooder, What makes a good brooder, Differences between broiler chicken / egg laying chicken and turkey brooder design, Some tips for managing your brooder to make life easier for you.
6/3/201248 minutes, 59 seconds
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022 Unexpected loss of a piglet, planting the gardens, broilers have arrived

Happy Memorial Day. A special thanks goes out to all out troops both serving and retired. We appreciate your sacrifices in protecting our freedoms and liberties. This episode and the Pledge of Allegiance is dedicated to you. This week’s updates around the farm and gardens: The loss of Snow the piglet and what we did, Snowflake the chick hatches, Ollie moves to another farm, Turkeys are growing in the brooder, Broiler chicks arrived, Planting the gardens now that's it's frost free time and 95 degrees and dry! In the CoopCast Community: Over 100 iTunes reviews - thanks "pickle kicker", Toni asked about maintaining asparagus beds and controlling slugs with salt, What are some general insect control methods we use, Mendy asks "How do you introduce or change the pecking order of a chicken flock when you add / remove birds".
5/27/201250 minutes, 32 seconds
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021 Heritage turkeys on the farm, sustainable farm energy, planting gardens and vegetables under row covers

This week’s updates on: "Limpy" the piglet is getting better,  Ollie or AI discussions continue,  Turkeys have arrived!,  Gardens going in under row covers,  Roadside stand seems to be a success! In the Farmers Choice: “What are your thoughts on alternative energy / sustainable farm solutions?”:  Why we selected geothermal over solar or wind,  Rain water collection systems,  Making sustainable decisions for your farm - slowly. In the CoopCast Community: Shelby from TX asked about pigs and what they do to a pasture,  Amber asked about controlling worms in a flock of chickens, We discuss some of the fun reviews and other feedback,  Melanie wanted to know if when we go out to eat, are we difficult?,  And Mike was inspired by Nugget and used his own broody hen to hatch out his own clutch of 7 chicks!
5/19/201249 minutes, 7 seconds
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020 Piglet castration (is it natural), morning sickness and a HOT greenhouse / hoophouse

This week’s updates on: The 10 piglet cohort is doing great,  Hermione gets sick, or, not,  You only get one mistake and that's one too many on the farm,  The farmstand is up and running. In the Farmers Choice: "How do you eat cute animals?" Can you eat pork that grows from a cute piglet? Do you want to look your meat in the eye? In this weeks Farm U: Piglet castration - what's involved and why do you do it,  Boar taint - what is it and how do you deal with it,  Unexpected events in the best planning.
5/14/201253 minutes, 17 seconds
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019 Vegetable garden and CSA planting begins and we share sow farrowing on pasture

This week's brief updates on: New sign for the farm,  Chickens and chicks,  Planting for the CSA has begun (love those soil blocks).  Instead of doing the CoopCast Community this week we are asking our listeners to post something about us on THEIR sites and social haunts. Post a review on your web site or blog of the coopcast, link back to our Facebook page, share anything to help us grow the CoopCast Community! In the Farmers Choice: We retell the story of how the week unfolded including the signs and steps of farrowing.  Share some of the magical moments that make being part of raising food so powerful.  The most unexpected event of the entire farrowing process!
5/5/201247 minutes, 30 seconds
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018 Spring snows and gardening, pastured chicken (broiler) pen wheels, seed starting and planting for a vegetable CSA

This week: Chickens and chicks (chooks) are all doing fine,  Pigs ready to farrow,  Late spring snow storm,  The hoophouse is filling up with seedlings.  In the The Coopcast Community: Global reviews on iTunes - how cool!,  The Urban Farmer for a Green Sustainable Living Community,  Guineas, guns and Doug from the Michigan DNR.  On Farm U: Planning the sequence and timings of starting seeds for production,  Planning the frequency and quantity of CSA harvests,  Tips, tricks and tools for starting seeds and know when to harvest the plants.
4/28/201246 minutes, 48 seconds
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017 Harrier Hawk vs Hen, homegrown pineapples (and other vegetable garden updates) and a farming lesson in livestock chutes

This week: An aerial assault by a Harrier Hawk on the chickens,  Moving pigs to new pasture,  Gardening update in the greenhouse,  A system for planting the right seeds,  Observations about what engages people with regards to farming.  In the The Coopcast Community: Preventing foxes and other predators from getting into a chicken pasture pen,  Growing your own pineapple,  Listener recommendations for great movies to watch about the food movement,  When it comes to food, "Does voting with my wallet work?".  On Farm U: Moving livestock and chute design,  What NOT to do,  Types of chutes and materials for construction.
4/22/201248 minutes, 28 seconds
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016 Pastured pork meat candy, heritage pig breeds and the FDA on farming and antibiotics

This week: Locally acquired chickens (support a local business),  Around the farm updates,  Preparations for pig farrowing,  Limping Andy and animals on concrete,  Pasture to Plate simple dishes.  In the The Coopcast Community: Chicks in a brooder - Use a red bulb in your brooder,  What is the best breed of pig?  A gift book and visit,  A listener "uses" his broody hen.  This Week, In The News: The FDA decided to "recommend" that no on farm antibiotics be used without a vets prescription.  While this sounds like a great thing, with less than 10000 large animal vets in the country, what's the real impact to small farms? ( discusses antibiotic resistance in the Farm U segment)
4/15/201255 minutes, 49 seconds
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015 Farming updates, planting peas in the garden, high tensile fencing project

On this coopcast: Listener feedback on YOUR farming projects (cool!),  Chicken coop chicks updates,  Pastured chicken pre-orders have started,  Status of the gardens and seeds,  The peas are in - must mean spring in NY,  Knitted farm animals (Indigo Moon's Chicken Thistle Farm Collection),  Sugar Mountain Farm's Kickstarter Project - here,  Prepping for piglets in 21 days!  On Farm U: What is High Tensile fencing,  Basic fencing design,  Electric fence energizer basics.  Other notes: Up until now we have been publishing the coopcast/farmcast/podcast every week in both m4a (Apple's format) and mp3 (the worlds format). The challenge is only one version can be included in the "feed" and recently we have had several requests for the mp3 to be in the feed. Given that, we are switching to mp3 and unless anyone speaks up we will be dropping m4a altogether starting with this coopcast.
4/8/201250 minutes, 9 seconds
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014 Farmstead hatched chicks, a visit to a heritage pig farm in NY, fenced in thinking

On this coopcast: 5 on farm hatched chicks in the coop now, Soil blocks and seeding in the hoophouse, The new farmstand, some general small farm / farming updates. A new segment called The Coopcast Community: What is that picture on Facebook?,  Do you know the breed of your chickens?,  What do coop hatched chicks eat?,  A Small Farm Kickstarter Project worth supporting.  Questions, Conversations and Rumination: Visiting a pasture pig farm,  Managing our pig herd in the future,  Analysis Paralysis by "Expert" Input,  A plan for farm fencing.
3/31/201253 minutes, 59 seconds
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013 Effects of "summer" in March on gardening and farming, Are you a farm / farmstead /homestead or homesteading, portable poultry netting

On this coopcast: An update of Nugget and other incubating eggs,  Managing pigs in unexpected heat,  Warm spring and it's effects on the gardens,  Soil block frustrations (again)!  A new segment called Questions, Conversations and Rumination: What is a farm?  And in this episodes Farm U segment: Portable pasture netting for poultry,  Management of netting,  Energizing the netting,  Where to find the netting.
3/25/201249 minutes, 15 seconds
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012 Farming while on vacation, grocery store produce (organic or local), ordering pastured chickens

On this coopcast: Managing a farm while you are on vacation,  Buying produce from the store (gross),  General farm updates,  The adventures of "Nugget".  And in this episodes Farm U segment: Buying / selling meat chickens,  The importance of good "forms",  Pricing of chickens.
3/17/201251 minutes, 49 seconds
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011 Round hay / straw bales, homestead hatched chicken, tractor talk and reviews (for small / hobby farms)

On this coopcast: Updates on the coop hatched chicken named "Nugget",  Grade School Science Fair,  Some good listener questions.  And in this episodes Farm U segment: Small farm tractors,  Brands and dealers that matter,  Types of tractor tires,  Size and selection.
3/10/201249 minutes, 20 seconds
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010 Stir frys and soil blocks, A farmstead hatched baby chick, pastured Cornish X

On this coopcast: Thanks for all the reviews and feedback - keep it coming - a great community of listeners,  Andy is losing the guinea discussions,  A soil block love affair,  Good eats with pork steak and preserved vegetable stir-fry,  A new firearm comes to live with us,  Hatched in the coop chickens.  And in this episodes Farm U segment: Final part of our Cornish Cross (Cornish X) chicken discussion,  Putting the birds on pasture (tricks and tips),  Pasture pens, Water, feed and other considerations for the pastured Cornish X birds,  A consumer's perspective on pastured chicken.
3/3/201248 minutes, 33 seconds
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009 General livestock updates, local feed and grains for animals, Cornish Cross chickens on pasture (part 2)

On this coopcast: Kelli managing the farm and Andy's business trip,  Crazy weather (really, it never ends),  General animal updates (pregnant pig and broody hen).  In our Listener Feedback/Questions discussion: Great feedback and reviews this week,  Questions about feed,  Other discussions.  And in this episodes Farm U segment: Second part of our Cornish Cross (Cornish X) chicken discussion including;  Where to get the chicks (hatcheries and strains),  Food, feed and feed restrictions for Cornish Cross chickens,  Managing the chicks in the brooder.
2/25/201246 minutes, 55 seconds
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008 Raising Cornish X Chickens, water for livestock (chickens), eating a Bourbon Red turkey

On this coopcast: A Bourbon Red Turkey in the oven,  Soil block germination rates,  Managing mice in the greenhouse,  Broody hen update.  In our Listener Feedback discussion: A plea for feedback and ratings on iTunes,  Bucket waterer tips for chickens,  Egg prices around the states,  Breeds of chickens in our laying flock.  And in this episodes Farm U segment: First part of our Cornish Cross (Cornish X) chicken discussion including;  How do they breed a Cornish Cross broiler,  A little history,  Consumer demand for the Cornish Cross carcass.
2/18/201245 minutes, 38 seconds
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007 Managing chicken coops, CSA update (vegetables and tools), pasturing birds for better eggs

On this coopcast: Soil block update,  CSA status,  Upcoming farm stand,  Our plans for a broody hen.  In our Chicken Talk discussion: How we set up our chicken coop for our climate,  How we pasture (range) our birds.  And in this episodes Farm U segment: Chicken manure management,  Carbon to Nitrogen in manure management (deep litter),  Coop cleaning.
2/11/201247 minutes, 43 seconds
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006 Memorable heritage breed turkey stories, Big Game recipes from the farm, and seed starting supplies

On this coopcast: What's with this winter weather,  A Pig-noucement,  Super Bowl (big game) foods,  Seed orders and annoying birds in the coop.  In the Farmers Choice: More memorable turkey moments.  And in this episodes Farm U segment: Seed starting suplies,  Lighting considerations for seed starting,  Soil blocking.
2/4/201242 minutes, 22 seconds
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005 Farming pastured heritage turkeys, geothermal heating / cooling, rural alternative heating options

On this coopcast: A thank you to all the listeners and fans around the world (you are the best!), The FIRST geothermal heating bill,  A pig with "the runs",  Seed orders and annoying birds in the coop. In the Farmers Choice: Stories of our first experience with turkeys.  And in this episodes Farm U segment: Alternatives to fossil fuels for heat in the country, Wood vs corn vs geothermal, Sustainable energy as an investment.
1/28/201241 minutes, 19 seconds
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004 Winter hoophouse, Ordering seeds (heirloom and hybrids) and About Eggs

On this coopcast: Winter weather has arrived with a big windstorm, Managing a winter hoophouse,  Ordering seeds (where, what and how).  And in this episodes Farm U segment: Eggsactly what does egg labeling mean;  Brown eggs vs white eggs;  What would you buy or how should you label if you sell eggs.
1/21/201240 minutes, 27 seconds
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003 Lessons learned on the farm and being prepared on the farm

On this coopcast: A followup on “Wheezy” the chicken;  An excited boar and lessons learned;  Being prepared on the farm.  And in this episodes Farm U segment: What products do we keep handy on the farm;  Best ways to be prepared on the farm for the unexpected.
1/13/201241 minutes, 22 seconds
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002 Annual "Farm Meeting", injured chicken, and antibiotic resistance

On this coopcast: Discuss the latest happening on the 'frigid' farm, 'Weazy' the chicken, A rehashing of the annual Farm Meeting.  And in this episodes Farm U segment: How to check a chickens health,  Discussion about antibiotic resistance
1/6/201239 minutes, 35 seconds
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001 Meet our farmstead and hear why we are talking about gardening, farming and homesteading

Meet the farmers Andy and Kelli and learn how we got HERE on our farming adventure.  We share our first thoughts on the point / audience / reason / format of these things.  There's also a discussion of what’s going on around our small farm and homestead. This episode introduces our Farm U segment where we share some ruminations about a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) model, discuss what a consumer should look for and expect and talk about what a farmer should consider when starting out with a CSA.  Since a CSA is such a popular (and growing) model to get fresh, local vegetables these conversations help both sides of the equation (farmer and consumer) understand what's involved. So welcome to the Chicken Thistle Farm CoopCast...  it's our irreverant take on the "farmcast", gardening, livestock talking, homesteading podcast.
12/29/201135 minutes, 32 seconds
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000 What is a Chicken Thistle Farm CoopCast / farmcast / farming podcast?

After producing a few episodes we wanted to offer new listeners a quick way to hear what a Coopcast sounds like: Meet Andy and Kelli, Learn why do what we do, Hear how we share our thoughts. Subscribe to the Chicken Thistle Farm CoopCast for a weekly dose of our informative and sometimes irreverent take on gardening, farming, homesteading and other activites from our homestead/farmstead. Our farmcast, err, coopcast invites you into our gardens, livestock pastures, chicken coop and greenhouse to share the stories and skills from our small farm as we live - pasture to plate. Our topics free range around pastured heritage pigs, broiler chickens and pastured eggs, heritage breed turkeys, an heirloom vegetable CSA and garden, high tunnel / hoop house / green houses, organic and traditional gardening, farm infrastructure, tractors, sustainable energy, permaculture, food preservation and even fence mending.
12/26/20118 minutes, 20 seconds