Q and A: an escape-proof pig pen, canning fast-food chicken, and grafted vegetables — 3 Comments

  1. My hubby got several grafted tomato plants a couple of years ago. They were expensive but he wanted to try them. Guess what? Don’t believe the ads cause they don’t produce half as many tomatoes. Although the flavor of the ones we did get was good, it wasn’t worth the price. Start heirlooms inside in the early spring and go with them and skip the grafted ones.

  2. When I was still full time farming I used to raise pigs for the family. I always used electric fencing (a low impedance charger with electric fence twine). You need to use a temporary barrier until they are trained which takes about a day. I KEPT THESE PIGS IN A SMALL BRUSH LOT AND NEVER CHASED PIGS. You may have to occasionally remove debris from the fence but a low impedance charger will not short out.
    copper Center, Alaska

  3. Grafted plants were developed for commercial greenhouse use, where they seem to do well. I had high hopes for grafted plants in my garden because of my difficult growing conditions. When I got them the graft had not completely healed over, so the top was flopping around and I had to tape the stems to two sticks. The graft did heal and the stem was strong, but the plants never did grow to more than 18 -24 inches or produce any food. I’ve read that this happens but have not seen any explanations of why. But to be fair, I did see several plants in my area not in a greenhouse that grew and produced just like the pictures. The plants cost $10 each and if they had lived up to the claims for extended season food production under adverse conditions would have been worth it. It was an interesting and expensive experiment, but I won’t buy them again until more is known about how and why they produce outside of a greenhouse. The money would have been better spent on another high tunnel. I agree with Jackie. I can’t see any reason to pay that much for a grafted plant either. You might look into grafting your own – it might be easier to do than trees. My plants looked like they had notch grafts but I bet you can find vegetable grafting instructions on the Internet. I think you’ll get more food for less money if you build tunnels or windbreaks, buy seeds and follow Jackie’s seed starting instructions in past issues of BWH. Just remember if you transplant young plants to prick them out with a fork and pick them up by the leaves, not the stem. Young stems crush very easily and often you can’t see that they are crushed until the plant fails to grow.