Installing an automatic heated livestock watering system in our barn for our farm and homestead has been one of the biggest game-changers in reducing labor effort, maintaining cleanliness, and, most importantly, combating Old Man Winter’s relentless effort to freeze everything in sight through our cold Wisconsin months. In this post, we will cover absolutely everything you need to know on how to build and install your own automatic heated livestock watering system for your barn - including plumbing supplies, heating elements, and step-by-step instructions for installing the automatic watering system.
Turns out I'm not the only one that feels like a fish out of water when the humidity and heat strike hard mid-July here in Wisconsin. My chickens were right there with me! Chickens and high heat plus humidity can be a deadly combination, especially this Wisconsin summer with the heat index climbing into the low 100s. So I wanted to share a few of the tips and tricks I've learned to keep my flock comfortable when I feel personally feel like melting.
Getting chickens out on pasture using an A-Frame chicken coop tractor is one of the best ways to give your hens access to the absolute best food. We built these A-frame chicken coop tractors to help remedy a handful of issues we kept running into when raising our hens.
My rambunctious chickens would never fail to stray a bit too far, get on the wrong side of the fence, and into our neighbors' yards. When I would open the coop door every morning, offering them their free-range freedom, I found myself checking on them every 45 minutes. It would disrupt my day, I was constantly stressed out, and the hens would always wind up into some sort of trouble. At that point, the only alternative was to keep them cooped up (hah), forbidding them access to all the wonderful things a free range chicken would have. That's where our A-frame mobile chicken coop tractor made chicken keeping a hundred percent easier!
Having Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm on the Positively Green Podcast was such an inspiring and necessary experience. In this episode we talk all about Leah's book Farming While Black, her Haitian heritage, and how we can support BIPOC farmers in the work towards land access and food sovereignty.
We are back on the Positively Green Podcast to talk all about everything you need to know for your 2nd and 3rd trimester of pregnancy and how we deal with the inevitable challenges in a natural way. This is a no-nonsense episode full of down-to-earth experience and insight for all our soon-to-be mamas out there. Suzette and I don’t shy away from topics like sex while pregnant, circumcision, itchy breasts - and all the other glorious pregnancy symptoms mamas face as they finish out the last months of their pregnancy.
To kick off season 4 of the podcast we have on the queen of the coop herself - Lisa Steele of Fresh Eggs Daily. Lisa has been raising chickens naturally for over a decade on her Fresh Eggs Daily Blog and shares with us all about how you can get started with your first backyard flock. We love her down-to-earth advice on using herbs and natural means to care for your hens. Lisa was and continues to be incredibly generous with her knowledge and insight on chicken care so be sure to tune in!
When chickens get lice or mites, it can cause a number of problems for your flock. From a dip in egg production to undue stress that negatively affects their immune system, these external parasites are bad news for your hens. When they show up, you want to get rid of them as soon as possible. So how do you do that?
I’ve found MannaPro Poultry Protector spray to be the most effective and quick non-toxic way to get rid of lice and mites. The issue is I own over 75 hens, so when I used Poultry Protector spray to kill lice and mites, I would go through a bottle a day! With each bottle ringing up at $12, it was an expensive treatment and I couldn’t keep footing the bill.
So I did my research and came up with a DIY Poultry Protector spray that costs me a fraction of the price (1/5 the cost to be exact!) and works just as well. In this post, I’m going to share it with you so you can help your hens and save a chunk of change too.
Through the hubbub of holiday shopping I like to keep it simple here at Green Willow Homestead - today through November 30th at midnight enjoy up to 40% off!
Grab the Holistic Home eBook, the Chicken Tractor Build Plans, our handcrafted Cocktail Bitters, or even preorder the Cultivating Capital Course at a discount and start 2022 with your best foot forward. Scroll on to learn more about all four deals!
Learning About Online And Digital Marketing For Farmers With Kelsey Jorissen Olesen - The Rural Woman Podcast
Want to learn how to use online marketing for your farm or homestead business? In less than a year, I doubled my income using online and digital marketing. So when I launched my very first roadside farmstand, I applied everything I learned and was completely blown away. Within one month, we hit our supply ceiling and had 150 super fan farmstand customers visiting our farmstand.
So today I am opening up about my online marketing journey. It’s rare that I get to share this part of my story. Everyone always wants to hear about the farming + homesteading + sustainability side of my journey (all of which I am happy to talk about!), but today that changes. If you’ve been curious about my path to sitting here writing you this post, how I started multiple e-commerce businesses, or how much money my marketing skills have made me over the years - then I got a heck of a treat for you.
I did a whole podcast interview with Katelyn Duban on The Rural Women Podcast. We cover all things online marketing for your farm or homestead. Katelyn did an amazing job interviewing me and getting to the heart of my marketing origins.
This interview taught me how you can’t fit 21st century farmers into a box. We all have such eclectic journeys, from second-career to first-generation or (in my case) actress turned filmmaker turned photographer turned marketer turned farmer.
Click below to tune in! Happy creepin' on me!
The 2021 Green Gifting Guide for Ethical and Sustainable Gift Ideas is here! Every year I launch a lovingly and carefully curated holiday gift guide to help you find unique, eco-friendly, and thoughtful gifts for your loved ones.
I know how overwhelming holiday shopping can be. As someone who loves finding the perfect gift, I understand how daunting it is when there are so many people you hold dear that you want to make feel special. I will admit that sometimes it feels like I am buying “just to buy" and get it crossed off my list. Pair that with being someone who cares deeply about being sustainable, ethical, and low to no waste with my shopping - it can take hours of online searching to find companies and products I trust.
So I know firsthand when the holidays come around, the call to spend money on gifts is at a fever pitch. It can be hard to navigate everyone’s wants and needs, while also keeping in line with your own values.
That’s why I created The Holiday Green Gifting Guide.
With over 60 gift ideas (categorized by age group and interests!), you can easily shop for everyone from toddlers to besties using the guide and give the earth a big hug while doing so. I want to save other earthy-friendly shoppers the time spent searching so you can breeze through your gifting with a clear conscious.
All of the gift ideas shared in this guide can be purchased online, they benefit great companies or artisan makers, are non-toxic, and good for the environment.
Thanks for stopping by Green Willow Homestead! From chicken rearing to composting, we've got our hands full and we love sharing what we've learned along the way. Follow along as we turn the 80 acres we call home into a farm that serves its community and a homestead that nourishes us throughout the seasons.
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Favorite Books of 2021
2. Braiding Sweetgrass
3. As Long As Grass Grows
4. The Small Scale Poultry Flock
5. The Zero Waste Solution