How to Till Soil With Pigs

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Select an area to make a garden.,
Get a pig house.,
Set up a fence around the soon-to-be garden.,
Find at least two pigs.,
Put your pigs in the soon-to-be garden.,
Wait.,
Move the pigs.,
Prepare the bed.,
Plant.,
Reward your pigs with some fresh vegetables harvested from your new garden.

You will want to look for a level area most likely covered with grass or a previously grown crop. Two pot bellied pigs can till up a 10ft x 10ft (3 meters x 3 meters) pasture area in the summer in approximately a month.;
, You will want to have a place for the pigs to seek shelter from storms and get shade on sunny days. The house can be bottomless to allow the pigs to make a nest in the dirt below it. The house should also be light enough that you will be able to move it. Twelve bales of straw arranged in 3.5 sides make a great, portable pig house, especially if topped with polycarbonate that overlaps the edges, especially on the shady side, and is weighted down with heavy metal. The pig will nose loose straw into bedding and nestle within it at night.

, If using a permanent fence, make sure that the fence is very sturdy – pigs are strong. Cattle panels work well if they’re well anchored. Pigs can push down or root under many fences. If you are planning on moving the pigs to make your garden bigger (or if you want to make sure you have a fence the pigs cannot get out of) you may want to set up an electric fence. Several strands of poly-tape or electric tape suspended approximately one foot off the ground can contain pigs, once they are trained to the fence. ElectroNet fences also will work well.

, Pigs are very social animals and like to live with at least one other pig. A pig’s size depends on its breed and can range from a 150 pound pot bellied pig to a 700 pound Hampshire boar. If you do not have any experience with large livestock, your best choice is probably a smaller breed.

, Make sure the pigs have access to water via a large water bowl or trough.

, Pigs love nothing more than rooting around in the soil, eating grass, roots, bugs and any other delicious treats they may find. While exhibiting this natural behavior, they unearth anything that is growing and leave behind tilled soil that is full of organic material and the pigs’ own natural “fertilizer.”

, Once the area is turned over and most of the previous ground cover has been eaten, you have two choices. Either move the fence with the pigs in it and the pig house about halfway, giving the pigs a new area to till up and leaving you with the first half tilled and ready to begin planting or move the pigs completely into a new area.

, You will probably need to even out the new bed as the pigs will have areas dug out, especially where the pig house used to be. This should also move around the “fertilizer” and get the garden ready for planting. Any other preparation (making raised beds, mulching, etc.) is up to you

, You will want to plant as soon as possible to give your seeds or transplants a head start against the weeds that the pigs chewed down.

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