Sunday, October 30, 2011

Respect the Tater

It is very important to treat a Large Black Hog boar like our Tater with all of the respect and dignity that is his due as the undisputed king of the barn yard.  

(Even if he is named after one of his all-time favorite foods...)

Summer is Way Past

We've had a couple of snows already.  The mountains are capped in white.  And I am still asking myself -- where did the summer go?!

We sold most of this summer's litter as breeding stock, raising a couple for ourselves through the winter. 

Fall 2011 CSA Large Black Hogs

These sleek and glossy animals are going to the processor mid-November, just in time for Thanksgiving!  

They were born in the dead of winter last year, on an evening when it was twenty below.  Our Large Black Hog sow Prudence seems to wait until I get home from work, every single time, to go into labor.  These barrows have lived with a herd since the day they were born, have had room to romp, roam, play and just be a pig.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Large Black Hog Piglets! Born Monday, June 25, 2011

There's an awful lot of cuteness in our barn at the moment.  These Large Black Hog piglets were born on Monday night, June 25.  4 Gilts.  5 Boars.  All are well.  I am spending way too much time in the barn!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Prudence in Pig

Our registered Large Black Hog sow Prudence reminds me of a walrus when she gets this big with piglets.  A very land bound walrus ...  Also, an occasionally cranky walrus with this spell of summer heat.

This is litter #3 for big Pru, and each time, I find myself contemplating her expanding girth, asking myself the question, "I wonder how many little piglets are in there?"

The other day, when she was snoring soundly beneath a juniper tree, I put my hand on her belly, and could feel them kicking.

We will have registered LBHA piglets available for sale this August 2011!  Please see our For Sale section for pricing.

Piglets in August!

Our Large Black Hog sow Prudence is expecting piglets in August 2011.  I think it will be August 3, 2011.  We'll see how good my piglet forecasting skills are ...

We will have registered LBHA piglets available for sale this August!  Please see our For Sale section for pricing.

Large Black Hog Swimming Pools

Sunday, May 29, 2011

There Goes the Neighborhood

Large Black Hog boar Tater enjoys socializing with the neighbor's horses.  These equines are not quite sure what to think about this inquisitive boar's friendly overtures.  I suspect they think the neighborhood is going downhill, being run over by four-legged brillo pads with tusks.

He is one big pig.

Little Pig

These Large Black Hogs are enjoying the herd life.

Monday, May 23, 2011

I haven't tasted sausage like this since I was a kid on my grandfather's farm!

 Here's what one satisfied CSA shareholder has to say about our pork:
Hey, Kimberly!!!!

I would say, "All I can say is WOW" except that I keep saying other stuff
like OMG, how can something taste this GOOD?!?!?!?

First, gotta tell you, I haven't tasted sausage like this since I was a
  kid on my grandfather's farm. So far, we have been delighted with EVERYTHING we've cooked! This meat is AMAZING!!!! Hope your biz is going great, because this is the best thing since sliced bread.

Saturday, May 21, 2011


Q:  How do you convince two shoats to squeeze back through the impossibly small hole in the fence through which they managed to escape just this morning, after spending an apparently delightful wriggly tailed day of romping with horses (and by some miracle not managing to get stomped), seeing the sights, evading coyotes, badgering chickens, and munching what little green stuff there is available in this drought?

A:  You make high pitched scary sounds and raise both hands, just slightly above your head, wriggling your fingers wildly, in imitation of a pig eating monster.  Which sends both little swine—who are not yet old enough to turn around and snort in uproarious indignation at just how lame you really are—trumpeting in porcine terror, wriggling straight back through that same unbelievably narrow hole to their 600-pound momma who is anxiously awaiting their return on the other side.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Our Local Harvest: 2010-2011 CSA Shareholder Large Black Hogs

We took these 10-month-old Large Black Hogs to the processor for our CSA Shareholders today! 
A peasant becomes fond of his pig and is glad to salt away its pork.  What is significant, and is so difficult for the urban stranger to understand, is that the two statements in that sentence are connected by an "and" and not by a "but."
 - John Berger, About Looking, 1980

Monday, February 28, 2011

Large Black Hog Country

The price of taking a shortcut through Large Black Hog Country is a good back scratching.  For everyone.  Here, my 13-year-old son decided to cut through the pasture while in the middle of Airsoft Gun target practice.  And was detained!

We're taking this lovely herd of Large Black Hogs to the processor for our Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) members mid March.  I've not done a very good job of not getting attached to these really nice, friendly and happy creatures.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Welcome to the World - New Litter of Large Black Hog Piglets

How many newborn piglets can you put in your wool sherpa hat to keep them warm while trying to be a helpful hog midwife?

Prudence's new litter of piglets.  Born 2/7/2011.  On one of the coldest nights ever.

All are well.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Snow Day

Very pregnant LBHA sow Prudence is too snug and warm in her improvised winter farrowing house to venture out into the deep freeze we all awoke to this morning.

We'll have piglets soon!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

The Real King of the Large Black Hogs

While we weighed the "little pigs" this afternoon, we took the tape measure to their daddy as well.

I am completely shocked that our big boar Tater weighs in at a cool 650 pounds and growing.  Funny, we brought this Texas native home in a dog kennel in the back of our pickup truck, and he used to curl up on my lap while I scratched his ears.  Almost 2 years ago.

Now I find myself dodging tusks and high boar spirits.  But the good news is that this gentle but bristly fellow is very respectful of my space, and a quick "No!" will set this guy back on his heels, doing his very best to be mind his boar Ps and Qs.

(About that king thing ... Sorry, gandar.)

Large Black Hogs at 8 Months

Despite all the romping and cavorting and high swine spirits on this beautifully warm winter day, we were able to weigh these 8-month old Large Black Hogs.  (See how you weigh a hog here, many thanks to Walter Jeffries, from whom I have learned so much about hog farming!). 

I have been referring to this lovely herd of heritage hogs, which belongs to our wonderful and supportive CSA Shareholders, as "the little pigs", but the fact is that, as of today, these Large Black Hogs are averaging around 240 pounds, and we're anticipating they'll definitely be around 280-300 pounds by the end of March, when they will go to butcher.  As you can see from the photos, these hogs are muscular, active creatures, in the bloom of health.  I am really proud of the beautiful animals I've raised humanely and naturally, and humbled by the opportunity to farm and raise healthy food, not only for myself and my family, but for my neighbors and my community. 

Queens of the Doublewide

We've moved expecting Large Black Hog sow Prudence and her daughter Baby to an improvised paddock surrounding the Sundowner trailer, which will serve as Prudence's winter farrowing house this year, because we simply ran out of time.
I'm pretty sure that Prudence, who is growing more Rubenesque every second, is enjoying her season of doublewide queendom.

Her daughter, Baby, who got her name because she has stuck to her big momma like glue since the day she was born, and who we knew would be good company, seems to be enjoying her stint as royalty too.