Just wanted to do a bit of a post on our Comfrey. This plant was a bit under utilized last year. I planted a 20 foot strip of new plants last spring along the east line of our property. They did quite well and I'm hoping they survived the winter and will be even better this year. Anybody who has had comfrey will know that the last sentence was almost a joke...can ANYTHING really kill comfrey?
Here is the pile we tried to dig out our first year here....we had no idea what it was!!
I dried some last year and fed it to the chickens in the fall mixed with their regular grain ration. I only tried a few handfulls just to see if they would like it. Since they loved it I will plan on doing more to last throughout the winter this year.
I have yet to try it on the goats as anything more than a handful tossed over the fence , maybe this year.
I found that the pigs gobble it down with extreme gusto. I have done some research on the toxicity (or lack there of) of comfrey when ingested. I am still undecided whether I am doing more harm than good but will continue to feed to my critters in moderation. I have seen (on the net) people who say they are using comfrey for up to 80-90% of their pigs feed. I do plan on starting much smaller than that with the pigs, for now I think I will stick with it at about 10% of the total feed.
I have no interest in partaking of comfrey internally myself (not from fear of poisoning, but because I don't need it). However I do firmly believe in it's use as a topical treatment. Personally I have used it on both myself, my husband and my goats in an oil infusion.
We will also be using it more in the gardens this year. I will be making some comfrey liquid fertilizer for general garden and plant use. Then I will try mixing some leaves into the potato towers. I have also heard that I can put the chicken manure directly out of the coop onto the comfrey beds - I'll let you know how true this is in a month or so.
I hope to keep you updated on the success of using my expanded comfrey beds to supplement our livestock feed program.
Until next time....