Jerusalem artichokes & pigs.
When I wrote to Countryside requesting information on an inexpensive source I was deluged with artichokes! I had artichokes shipped to me from as far away as New York and Texas.
Then I received a call from a local countrysider. She invited me over to dig roots, and gave me two five-gallon buckets full! (That was also the first time I got to taste goat milk. It was delicious.)
Anyway, this was more than enough to get a small plot started.
I found that everybody loves the greens--not my family, of course, but the cows, goats, pigs and horses. The roots will be put through an old beet grinder and fed to the pigs to supplement their grain. I don't intend to truck farm the things; I just want to cut back on my feed bill and this seems to be the way to go.
About pigs: I agree with everything Mrs. S. Boggs said about starting them, with the exception of worming them and butchering gilts.
Piperazine does not get all the worms. Better products are Atguard granules that are fed orally in a treat, or Ivomec injectable.
We have never had any problems butchering gilts in heat. If you butcher a boar, however, you will want to castrate it first or the meat may have a bad flavor.
I have just started raising weaner pigs, but I have raised butcher hogs for years and have not had any complaints. We sell most of our hogs locally, but we also ship to Arizona and California.
It's futile to talk about wormers (or anthelmintics or vermifuges) for any livestock without knowing what kind of internal parasites are present. Swine can have several kinds of worms, and there are different wormers for each.
Hyostrongylus is a common parasite that causes unthriftiness. Recommended wormers are thiabendazole, levamisole, and dichlorvos.
Ascaris or large roundworm infections can result in respiratory problems. Piperazine is a popular vermifuge for this one because of its effectiveness and low toxicity, but dichlorvos, levamisole and others are also used.
Light to moderate infections of the intestinal threadworm strongyloides often show no signs in the pig, although heavier infestations can result in diarrhea, anemia, emaciation, and death. Thiabendazole is effective here.
For yet another, Macracanthorhynchus hirudinaceus, there is no effective treatment.
Most stock raisers rely on a vet to identify parasite problems, and to recommend control measures.