Guinea pig garden

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Alicia Corey

Post   » Fri Apr 08, 2005 10:57 am


I suck at keeping any plants alive, but I would love to try gardening now that I have seven piggies. How do you separate the Aspen bedding from the poop, or do you just throw it all in the garden? Also, my pigs don't really seem to like parsley, but they love cilantro, do they have the same nutritional value? Have you all heard about spinach being bad for piggies? I have heard that it builds up some sort of toxin in their body and they can die, is this true? And with veggies like Kale, do we just give them the leafy part or is it okay to give the stem too? I have been giving all of it.

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smiley
Just Do It

Post   » Fri Apr 08, 2005 11:32 am


I throw all of it in. I was told too much sawdust can remove the nitrogen out of the soil....but it is also a great mulch. Too much spinach is bad, everything in moderation. Some of mine like the stems of kale, some don't.

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lisam

Post   » Fri Apr 08, 2005 11:33 am


Yes, you can give the stem, too.

As for the aspen bedding: Wood takes awhile to decompose, and it also needs nitrogen for that. So, while it is decomposing, it takes away nitrogen that your plants desparately need to grow. It would be better to compost it beforehand. Start a compost bin or pile. Add your soiled bedding, grass clippings from the lawn, and any fruit or vegetable waste from the kitchen. Turn it from time to time, and eventually it will be decomposed enough for the garden.

Or, you could use it as mulch instead, in the pathways of your garden, or around the flowers in your flower bed.

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pevensiev

Post   » Fri Apr 08, 2005 12:59 pm


Spinach contains alot of calcium. My guinea pig gets sluge in his urine from too much calcium so I stay away from it. Always keep a check on your pigs' urine for gritty deposits, white or dark colored. I would say spinach shouldn't be a staple for pigs.

You should try gardening. I find it much easier (though more work if that makes any sense) than houseplants. I kill those left and right. Lettuces are great to put in. Get those little peat pellets that expand when you add water and sprinkle lettuce seeds. You'll get sprouts in no time and then after they get bigger, put them in your garden.

zookeeper
Even Booze Hags Give

Post   » Fri Apr 08, 2005 1:17 pm


pevensiev, both leaves & flowers of nasturtium are edible. My piggies aren't really wild about it, but I throw some in for variety.

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DartsOfPleasure

Post   » Fri Apr 08, 2005 4:26 pm


I sowed some parsley in pots 2 weeks ago. How long does it take to grow? Should the parsley be in any special conditions? On the packet of seeds is says put it in a polythene bag, and then pop the container in a windowsill. So that's what I've done but I see nothing! I'm so impacient.

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lisam

Post   » Fri Apr 08, 2005 4:28 pm


I seem to remember that parsley takes a while to germinate.

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smiley
Just Do It

Post   » Fri Apr 08, 2005 4:28 pm


My parsley grew wonderfully. Lots of sun, I put a plastic film over the pot in the sun, and they sprouted. Then I took it off and it grew like mad.

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DartsOfPleasure

Post   » Fri Apr 08, 2005 4:31 pm


I have no idea about growing anything - do you have to water the parsley everyday?

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smiley
Just Do It

Post   » Fri Apr 08, 2005 5:26 pm


I watered it when I thought about it. Which was not very often.

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Brimstone
For Rocky

Post   » Fri Apr 08, 2005 11:20 pm


Thanks for the good gardening ideas. I think I want to try to grow some green peppers and maybe some lettuce or tomatoes this year.

I've been trying to compost my pigs' waste, but it hasn't been decomposing very fast. It's too dry. My guys live on towels, which I shake out every day and then sweep up the leftover hay and poo and dump it in the compost bin. We don't have enough "wet" stuff to keep a good ratio for decomposing. But now that the ground has thawed, we've found too much damp mulch near our house. So probably tomorrow I'll start dumping some of that in the composters.

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Alicia Corey

Post   » Sat Apr 09, 2005 2:33 am


Hey, in the dollar section at Target they have tiny little pots with parsley, basil, and chives. Can pig have basil and chives, oh and what about stems of green onions? Anyway, thought I would let everyone know. I picked up two little pots of parsley. If anyone goes to check it out could you let me know if it will be fine for the GP's?

Thanks

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Sat Apr 09, 2005 10:53 am


I just use it as mulch, let it decompose in time by itself. I have a 5-10 gallon capacity container outside that I dump things in and then they go in the garden, on top of some unwanted weeks. This is the low maintenance way to do it.

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snowflakey
E's Moriarity

Post   » Sat Apr 09, 2005 11:51 am


If your pigs will eat basil it is okay. I would skip the chives.

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mn_cavylover

Post   » Sat Apr 09, 2005 4:21 pm


I'm growing cucumbers, parsley, cilantro, red peppers, and romaine lettuce. I also have basil and chives, but I'm not certain how the cavies will like those or what the nutritional breakdowns are. We grow them every year for our own food, actually, but keep forgetting it's out there! Most of it gets wasted, sadly. I bought one of those seed-starter packs, where you fill the dirt pellets with water and they expand, and it has a plastic cover as well. The parsley and cilantro are just in their pots right now, though--I'm hoping they'll grow alright that way.

zookeeper
Even Booze Hags Give

Post   » Sat Apr 09, 2005 9:41 pm


Parsley does take a long time to germinate -- like 3 weeks to a month. It helps if you soak the seed for 24 hours before planting. I fold up a paper towel on a saucer, get the paper towel thoroughly wet, and dump a layer of parsley seed onto it. (This also helps with salad burnet.)

My pigs will eat basil, but it's not their favorite. However, I encourage them to eat it because it seems to me that their pee doesn't stink as much after they've eaten basil.

Forget chives, anything onion-flavored they're not gonna touch with a 10-foot pole.

aqh88

Post   » Sun Apr 10, 2005 10:05 pm


pevensiev- aquarium water is great for watering plants. It contains lots of nitrogen. Depending on how many aquatic plants you have and what you feed your fish it can also be full of other nutrients like phosphates. We use it to water all the house plants and on water change days dump about 10gallons onto the bushes and garden.
Parsley is quite slow to germinate. I got one of those little $1 pots and so far it's the last thing to show up in my seed pots. My pigs go nuts for the basil and catnip. Dried or fresh they love it. Especially catnip. They also love the days when I trim my aquarium plants. I'm thinking of setting up an aquarium of all edible aquatic plants for them. Watercress is actually an aquatic plant I'm trying to grow in 2 of my aquariums.
(I am way too busy lately and I still need to clean the wheeks cages tonight)

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JaneDoe

Post   » Mon Apr 11, 2005 11:37 am


I bought a red bell pepper at Whole Foods yesterday and it looked as though it had little baby peppers inside, kind of like those National Enquirer stories about people with their own twins growing inside their bodies. Is this common with peppers?

zookeeper
Even Booze Hags Give

Post   » Mon Apr 11, 2005 11:58 am


Oh yah, I see that with peppers all the time.

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snowflakey
E's Moriarity

Post   » Mon Apr 11, 2005 1:02 pm


I get Weekly World News quality peppers all the time.

My favorite are ears of corn with baby corn phalluses sticking out of them.

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