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Old 01-31-2014, 03:22 PM   #11
whswhs
 
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Default Re: [LTC3] Textile Crops and Beekeeping

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Originally Posted by scc View Post
I was actually thinking of how much hay/fodder does a typical harvest produce per acre and what can I do with that? How many animals can I feed? For example how many pounds of fodder does it take to reduce the grain consumption of a acre of cattle by one pound?
In the middle ages that's kind of backward. It was rare for any cattle to be fed on grain at all. Oxen were working beasts, and cows were dairy stock; they were slaughtered when they stopped being productive, and then cooked by techniques suitable for meat without a lot of fat. They were fed on hay, mostly. (Horses were more expensive, because a horse doing serious work really needs oats.) This is why one of the later fall months was once called "Bloodmonth": It was the time when you slaughtered the stock you didn't have enough hay to keep fed through the winter. Feeding them on grain meant starving your family, often enough; it takes around 10 pounds of vegetation to produce 1 pound of meat, and if the vegetation is something you could eat yourself, doing so is a win.

There were occasional exceptions, kine fed on grain and fattened for the table. This is what the Biblical expressions about "the fatted calf" and "the stalled ox" refer to. But that was food for rich people or for major ceremonial occasions. Our modern agroeconomy where cattle are routinely fed on grain is a major innovation. Of course, these days, if you eat grass fed beef (as my doctor told me to some years ago), you'll actually pay more, but that's not how it used to be.

Bill Stoddard
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Old 01-31-2014, 03:27 PM   #12
Vaevictis Asmadi
 
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Default Re: [LTC3] Textile Crops and Beekeeping

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Originally Posted by tshiggins View Post
That said, there's a reason Van Morrisson sang, "She's as sweet as Tupelo honey." The peach orchards around Tupelo, Mississippi, made the area famous long before Elvis was born, there.
And I always thought it referred to the tupelo tree.

What about Maya and other Mesoamerican beekeeping? The native bees are stingless, kept in a different sort of hive, and probably cultured differently from the European/Asian bees.
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Old 01-31-2014, 10:25 PM   #13
Flyndaran
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Default Re: [LTC3] Textile Crops and Beekeeping

Some wasp species produce honey, if you're thinking of odd backgrounds for hypothetical settings.
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Old 01-31-2014, 11:42 PM   #14
Peter Knutsen
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Default Re: [LTC3] Textile Crops and Beekeeping

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Is that acre dedicated wholly to beekeeping, or is it part of the cropland, orchards, etc.?
The beehive itself takes up neglible space. The bees gather nectar from flowering plants that grow on the acre, and those flowering plants can very well themselves be of agricultural value. Notably, though, grains are not flowering plants.
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Old 01-31-2014, 11:49 PM   #15
scc
 
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Default Re: [LTC3] Textile Crops and Beekeeping

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Originally Posted by whswhs View Post
In the middle ages that's kind of backward. It was rare for any cattle to be fed on grain at all. Oxen were working beasts, and cows were dairy stock; they were slaughtered when they stopped being productive, and then cooked by techniques suitable for meat without a lot of fat. They were fed on hay, mostly. (Horses were more expensive, because a horse doing serious work really needs oats.) This is why one of the later fall months was once called "Bloodmonth": It was the time when you slaughtered the stock you didn't have enough hay to keep fed through the winter. Feeding them on grain meant starving your family, often enough; it takes around 10 pounds of vegetation to produce 1 pound of meat, and if the vegetation is something you could eat yourself, doing so is a win.

There were occasional exceptions, kine fed on grain and fattened for the table. This is what the Biblical expressions about "the fatted calf" and "the stalled ox" refer to. But that was food for rich people or for major ceremonial occasions. Our modern agroeconomy where cattle are routinely fed on grain is a major innovation. Of course, these days, if you eat grass fed beef (as my doctor told me to some years ago), you'll actually pay more, but that's not how it used to be.

Bill Stoddard
Sorry Bill, you misunderstood what I was asking, the rules/information we're given don't talk about feeding cattle fodder at all, just an increase that can be gained by feeding them grain. Now from what I understand feeding them fodder is an alternative to grain and 'fodder' from recovery crops like legumes can actually be pretty good for the cattle
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Old 02-01-2014, 08:56 AM   #16
hal
 
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Default Re: [LTC3] Textile Crops and Beekeeping

Hello SCC,
For what it is worth, the information that I am going to give you here, requires that you do a little bit of "digging" in another forum. In it, you will find discussions of how much land is required for various things related to farming. In addition, much of the material you will find, is geared towards a currency known as "pence" or silver penny - 12 pence to a shilling, 20 shillings to a pound.

Beekeeping related material, hosted by a fan of the game world "HARN", is no longer available directly from the user's website (Andrew Staples), but is still available via Wayback Machine. I've embedded a link HERE for where you can find the Beekeeping material. I've also embedded in THIS link, the overall link to Andy Staple's web page because it has a LOT of good material relating to medieval Farming.

The place to do some digging about the yields per acre for Hay is on this THREAD I started YEARS ago, but was based upon my dissatisfaction regarding Harnworld's pricing for Hay versus what I was coming across elsewhere.

If you want to take the time to find the various yields for various crops, I think you could probably do a search on my name and say "wheat" to find various posts that contain information I've gleaned over the years. One thread I found quickly enough was THIS ONE.

Last but not least. There is a game resource out there called HARN MANOR (Link provided by clicking on the name) that you may want to take a peek at. While it is not without its warts, it is something I think you may get a kick out of for use with your own campaigns. It not only permits you to simulate the economy of a medieval village - it also permits you to simulate a basic village - right down to generating how many families live within the village, what their economic status is (ie how much land they hold), what they owed in tithes to the church, etc. It unfortunately is lacking in details like chickens and such - but it does detail how much land is required for the various animals such as sheep, pigs, cows, etc. It is lacking unfortunately, in details for horse farms, but - it does give you a good bang for the buck. In any event, there is a review of the game supplement HERE.

For what it is worth, feel free to contact me via email and I will try and steer you to other resources. Do NOT be afraid to go to the HarnForums for any other questions on Medieval resources such as mining, medieval pay rates for various workers, etc. While it may not be the most scholarly resource you can find in life, it will generally point you in the right direction, and in many cases, material quoted there is the result of hobbyists making the attempt to put forth credible values/information. :)
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Old 02-01-2014, 08:59 AM   #17
hal
 
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Default Re: [LTC3] Textile Crops and Beekeeping

I neglected to add a "flax" link to my above post - so here is the FLAX link...
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Old 02-01-2014, 09:32 AM   #18
tantric
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Default Re: [LTC3] Textile Crops and Beekeeping

While we're on this subject, does anyone know much about alternate means of making paper? I'm trying to work with crops introduced into Africa by 1000CE. My best options seem to be kenaf and banana fibers, but I can't find what kind of tech is necessary for these kinds of paper. Cotton is an option for paper, and I'm introducing slave plantations for cotton (seems logical given native cotton and slave based agriculture), but I have no idea how much that would cost. I'm aiming for an obsessively literate society (based on written genealogies), but for that to work, they need LOTS of paper. There are trees, of course, but African style acacia forests won't stand the kind of denuding that European and East Asian forests took (even given a non-destructive kind of elephant). There's also a lot of myth about forests not putting up with that kind of stuff, which I'm allowing - cut too many trees and your axe will turn on you (unless, of course, you kill a goat, which seems to be a spiritual panacea).

Since I'm also adding corn (brought from heaven via Jared Diamond), I also considered saying that a form of paper can be made from ground corn cobs and alchemically treated gum arabic. Is that even vaguely reasonable?
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Old 02-01-2014, 09:47 AM   #19
hal
 
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Default Re: [LTC3] Textile Crops and Beekeeping

Another Jared Diamond Fan eh? COLLAPSE and GUNS, GERMS, & STEEL are personal favorites of mine - and well worth the read in my opinion.

In any event, to answer the question on papermaking - try this URL - might be useful for your question.
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Old 02-01-2014, 09:50 AM   #20
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Default Re: [LTC3] Textile Crops and Beekeeping

You track wild hives by taking a pot of mixed sugar and water and heating it. The scent attracts wild bees and you trap them in the pot with a lid. After a while you remove the lid and the bees return to their hive to tell the other bees about their great find. So you follow them.
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