Has anyone grown these for fodder before? I've read that they are great feed for chickens, pigs, anything. I'd love to find some seed but it seems to be fairly rare.
I believe I saw them at prairie garden seeds.. I was eyeing them up last year, but didn't order any. They are definatly on my list for this year though. If you want to feed beets to chickens you need to shred it first. Maybe we could trade some seed in the future?? : )
ah yes, here it is...MAMMOTH LONG RED MANGEL (I've attached a link)
I ordered from here last year, Very impressed. He is a one man show, and all the seeds came in recycled junk mail envelopes handwritten in pencil. It was awesome. Definatly will order again this year.
Here is a link that might be useful: Prarie Garden Seeds
It looks like a great place, unfortunately it's for US customers only and I'm in Canada - often the case - $7 S&H! Wow that's more than the package of seeds!
I'd much rather trade with someone who might have a few extra seeds, just to get started. Then I'd like to collect my own seeds next fall. Can you let your beets go to seed and collect your own seed from them? How long does that take? I've never seen beets go to seed. I would like to do that next fall, if I can get some mangel beet seeds this spring.
Check the other forums here--there is a seed exchange one. :) I haven't heard of mangle beets before, thanks for the tip!
Prairie Garden Seeds is CANADIAN. (and so am I!)
It is located in Humboldt, Sask. The $7 shipping and handling is ONLY FOR USA customers. For Canadian customers it's $2, unless your order is over 100g then it would be $6.
I know I had a heck of a time finding Canadian suppliers last year. Especially ones that offer offbeat and/or organic seeds. I have a list of Canadian seed companies now, if you'd like it.
I used to work for Mackenzie Seeds... until they were bought out by an American company (jiffy) 2 years ago.
Here is a link to another thread from last year about Canadian seed sources. It's from the gardening in Canada forum. There is also a Canadian garden exchange forum. I did quite a bit of trading last year.
Here is a link that might be useful: Canadian seeds
I must have looked at the wrong info on their site and saw only the US infor and the $& S/H. The $2 S&H fee is very good! I will definately look at them again. Thanks for the link and I would love a list of Canadian seed suppliers.
Thank you very much!
I frequent the Cdn gardening and Cdn seed exchange all the time. Both great sources of info.
Let me know if you try them, Velvet, and how they worked for you. If I can get some seeds, and have the time and space, I might grow them myself for winter chicken feed. I'll have to look at how much work they are to use as feed. If my chickens won't eat them unless I grind them up, then they're going to be a lot of work. My chickens don't seem to want to eat anything hard unless I grind it up.
I grew mangels in years past. They grew, but not as large as they were supposed to get. I think I've found them in Pinetree(Superseeds.com) and in Seeds of Change. I, too, am going to try again in 2009. As far as saving seeds from biennials (like beets and carrots), just save a few roots through the winter and replant them in the spring. They should flower and go to seed. Some people grow carrots this way for the flowers--they look like Queen Anne's Lace. They supposedly will cross with QAL as well and yield an inedible product, so be careful if you have that flower/weed in your vicinity.
I have A LOT of QAL! It grew among my garden carrots last year. What a pain!
If I do plant some mangle beets this year, I will save a few to plant next spring for the seeds. Good info, thanks! I like to save my own seeds for planting, provided they're not GM and patented (what a joke that is! lol!)
Baker Creek here in southern Missouri has them.www.rareseeds.com.Their catalog this year is awesome.Posy Pet
I grew them in so-so soil, and they were big, but not 20 pounds like some of them say they can get. They sell mangels at jung, RH Shumway (they have more selection).
Another easy to grow root crop is jerusalem artichokes. Those things grow almost effortlessly. They can also be eaten by people too. Easy to grow, mine come up every year, which amazes me because I don't really do anything to them, they are surrounded by WEEDS and I'm surprised they come back because we have mouse problems like crazy. They can tolerate bad soil but decent soil will produce even better crops. One year I grew mangels and I left a few in the ground, and the mice ate those shortly after the fall frost came. They don't go after the Jerusalem artichokes as much though.
I'm still thinking about the mangles. My chickens don't seem to eat much of the hard, whole veggies. I don't know if they'd eat them. I'd have to grind one up the first time. I'll try regular beets this winter and see how they do with them.