I would suggest a wire covering to keep the chickens from digging up the plants. Plant 5-6 seeds in each hill and cover with 1 inch of soil. They also help to attract pollinators! This plant provides several other benefits, too, serving as a great windbreak, an excellent natural dye, and one of the best ways to fix nitrogen in your soil. Dandelions are a great source of fiber for your chickens, and because they’ll grow just about anywhere, you can sprinkle the seeds in your chicken yard and let the birds snack on the flowers once they emerge. … Let the chickens till up the bed about two or three weeks before you need to plant in it. Like many other herbs, lavender is a natural insect repellant that can help freshen the smell of your coop. I was going to plant my apple tree in their yard, and the orange tree in the dog yard..... My chicken ate a lemon balm leaf. I would also add Hops to the list of vining plants. You can harvest the berries to feed directly to your chickens, or you can let them graze among the bushes. If you’re planning on landscaping the chicken run, then here’s the list of some chicken-friendly plants you might need to consider. I free range my chickens and this was very informative. Melons, like honeydew and watermelon, are a great source of nutrition for your birds. This plant withstands traffic and stress quite well, so even if you allow your chickens to forage directly on a patch of white clover, you might find that it keeps coming back. Well, they’re good for your chickens, too! Take a look at some of these plants that you can grow to supplement your chicken feed. I'm pretty sure the Eastern Redbud is OK - when my chickens were small, they loved to eat the leaves - now they don't care for them so much but no one ever got sick. In fact, if they eat too many of them, there is a strong chance that they may die. Hello, If you aren’t already growing nasturtiums in your garden, you need to start. Top 10 Garden Plants For Chickens and Ducks. Beets, like radishes, are root vegetables that can be planted in succession. Nope. Most chickens love to forage. These plants will do the trick. Thin to 1 inch when seedlings reach 6 inches in height. As cold-season crops, they grow best in the spring and fall. Open up the compost bin– even if you decide not to grow plants specifically for your chickens, you can reduce your feed bill by allowing your chickens to peck and scratch in the compost pile. Whenever we add new tender plantings to the garden, as a precaution from overzealous chickens, we surround the new plant with chicken wire to keep it safe until it is well established. Instead of serving food free choice, only give out a half a pound a day per chicken. You can give the chickens a cut pumpkin fresh from the vine. But what you probably didn’t know is that they can also serve as an excellent source of feed! If you forget to plant a winter cover crop, you can plant one in the spring, too. These veggies can be eaten whole – they’ll nibble on the plant! You can also look for chicken breeds that are good natural foragers and are better at finding their own food. Also natural parasite control for chickens, cucumbers are already in most home gardens. For a 25 square foot bed, you can get up to 550 plants. Your email address will not be published. There are studies currently being conducted that suggest that oregano can help fight avian flu, e. coli, coccidiosis, and salmonella. Save the seeds, and you’ll have a great treat for the fall and winter months. The Homesteading Hippy is a participant in the Amazon Services L.L.C. Or both seeds and fruit? This herb produces large, lacy pods of yellow flowers. Note: The information provided on The Homesteading Hippy is for educational purposes only. I didn’t notice anything about that in your article. Remember, this is not an exhaustive list: To keep your chickens safe, do your research. While there are very few plants that your chickens wont love, there are several that you might want to avoid. Besides saving you money, these plants sampled here have a high nutritional value, and they are good for your chickens. Chickens benefit from fresh greens during the colder months when they don’t have access to pasture. Always err on the side of caution; if you suspect a plant is poisonous to your chickens, rid it from […] When planting cucumbers, plant in rows with 12 inches of spacing. :-) Let’s start! Plants. All you need to do is start with seeds from plants like peas, corn, sunflowers, wheatgrass, oats, or soybeans. 1) Sunflowers Not only will the seeds of this plant provide you with a delicious treat, but your chickens will love them as well. Required fields are marked *. Pin This To Save For Later 8 Common Weeds Your Chickens Will Love 1. For a 25 square foot bed, you can get up to 550 plants, plant seeds approximately 4 inches apart, then thin to 10 inches once they are 2 inches tall, for extended harvest, plant rows several days apart, carefully pull apart the head to expose the seeds, soak seeds overnight in salt solution of 1/4 cup of salt for every quart of water. I Don’t know about the rest of you, but everything I plant for my chickens is devoured in a few days. This herb provides high plant protein and antibacterial properties so it’s great for the chickens. If you’re a gardener (or aspiring gardener) with spoiled fowl, you might want to grow the 10 seed varieties we mention below and even consider getting all of them in a single 10-pack bundle straight from our USDA certified organic heirloom seed company (GrowJourney) – PayPal purchase link here and at the bottom of the article. Avoid planting the following crops near your chicken coop to avoid temptation: And while it’s fine to feed bean plants to your chickens – including the leaves, stems, and roots – you should avoid feeding uncooked beans to your birds, as this can cause fatal health conditions. To dry sunflower seeds to store for year round treats: Growing pumpkins in your garden makes for some tasty treats for the family. The grains from this plant are used to make sorghum flour, a gluten-free alternative that is often used in baking. Sweet potatoes are easy to grow because, since they grow underground, they don’t take up a lot of space. However supplementing chicken feed with plants could be good for the chickens, and your pocket too. Wheat, rye, barley. As an avid gardener and chicken keeper, this week I wanted to share with you my Top 10 easiest plants to grow for your chickens no matter where you live. Soak them in a bowl and spread them onto a container with drainage holes. Below is a list of foods you should refrain from feeding your chickens. Add Mulberry to the tree list as well. Jun 6, 2020 - Explore Cacklefeathers's board "Plants for chickens", followed by 290 people on Pinterest. At this time, you can graze your chickens over the crop patch with a mobile chicken tractor or moveable poultry netting. Disclaimer: There are many, many other plants that can pose a threat to your chickens. Another great insect repellent, this bright yellow-orange flower is known to be one of the best garden companions out there. If you think growing sweet potatoes is reserved for gardeners in warm climates, think again -there are some varieties that can be grown even in Canada. Cover crops are often planted to fix nitrogen, improve soil quality, and hold moisture. Chickens will eat most things you feed them. Most of the things naturally growing in your yard will be fine for your chickens to peck and eat- keep them away from tomato plants & potato plants (nightshades), ornamental plants, and seedpods (especially wisteria). Grains are great for your chicken’s health - grains are packed with juicy vitamins. Plant seeds 1 inch deep, directly into the ground, as cucumbers generally do not like to be moved. In fact, its use is being studied as a natural antibiotic on several largescale poultry farms! It’s a great option for a low-cost feed to give to your chickens to keep them healthy. Your chickens probably won’t eat the rinds, but they’ll eat everything else, including the flesh, seeds, and parts of the skin. You can grow berry bushes at home with ease, and with any luck, you probably have some berry bushes growing wild on your property, too! For a better experience, please enable JavaScript in your browser before proceeding. Your chickens can snack on the larvae of those pollinators, or they can eat the fruit of the tree (as well as the leaves) once it matures. When your mom told you to eat your spinach, she had your best intentions at heart – leafy greens are so good for you. Another fun idea for free range time is to plant a garden just for your chickens, full of their favorite weeds and plants! See more ideas about chickens, chickens backyard, plants for chickens. It can improve chicken health, particularly in the winter time when your girls are confined more often to the coop. Store in an airtight, covered container for up to 2 years, not all pumpkin varieties are orange when ripe, thump the skin, and check for a hollow sound, the stem will be hard on the pumpkin that is ripe. Many herbs benefit from a trimming. They can also help to prevent weeds from emerging. So, if you want a pest-free coop, toss in herbs to the nesting boxes or hang them from the ceiling. But, there are numerous food and herb plants that can be planted outside and out of their reach, snipped off and fed to your flock to add variety to their diet. To grow cover crops as chicken feed, simply plant them before your first frost date. If you want them to get every last berry, just make sure you plant a thorn less variety of berry. Nope. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. The great thing is that you can actually grow some of these plants right in your backyard garden. Unlike regular white potatoes, which can be toxic to chickens, sweet potatoes are safe for your birds to eat. Learn more here. If you choose to direct sow the seeds, plant 1/2 inch deep and thin to 12 inches when the seedlings are 3 inches high. Once it’s mature, you can harvest the seed heads and drop them anywhere you want nettles to grow. This is toxic to chickens. Dry at 175 degrees F for at least 6 hours. Vines provide your chickens shade, a bit of protection for aerial predators and a tasty snack that can be foraged through the run. Chickweed also can be foraged for and brought home as a treat for you and your flock. Siberian pea shrubs aren’t just gorgeous, but they also attract beneficial pollinators. You can sprout dry grains and seeds to provide your chickens with valuable nutrients in a more digestible format. You might want to consider supplementing your chicken feed with some great plants around your garden. Please tell me. Toss a few fresh leaves in their nesting boxes and in their coop for a sweet smell, too. Be sure to pin this for later! Dandelions are considered a weed by many, but if you have a homestead, you probably know how valuable these tiny little flowers can be. This is my Golden Girls Hen House. What is your favorite to give to your flock? These cruciferous vegetables are good for everybody – chickens included. Coleus Annual Hens & Chicks 4-8 Perennial Hosta 3-7 Perennial Yucca 4-11 Perennial. Harvest cabbages after the first light frost by using a sharp knife and cutting to 1 inch above the ground. Plant squash seeds into warmed soil (once the winter frosts have passed) Grains. Rinse them daily until the sprouts are four inches tall, then let your chickens enjoy the feast. When you’re free-ranging chickens, acquaint yourself with the more common ornamentals and edibles that are mildly toxic to poisonous to chickens. Note: Some annuals can be over-wintered as perennials in warmer climates. Even on a small homestead, you can grow wheat. All rights reserved. It’s also a great source of nitrogen, helping to build your soil as well as your compost pile. Feeding those chickens doesn’t have to be hard, or even expensive. I've read several places that it's not only safe, but the fruit (hops) is good for them. If your chicken tucks into the leaves from this family of plants, then they are going to get sick. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Calendula also has medicinal value for humans, and makes a great tea. When planting pumpkins, you will want to grow them in hills. Cull unnecessary flock members – this might be tough for you to envision, but there might come a time when you need to either give away or cull old hens, old roosters, or chickens that are either genetically undesirable or unproductive. It’s easy to grow, too – you can plant it at any time of the year during which the soil can be worked, and it will stay alive in extreme temperatures – it’s hardy in zones 3-9. MEXICAN BUSH SAGE. It’s better to be safe than sorry, and to limit their access to poisonous plants in ways that make sense. This can save you some cash because a feed bag can be somewhat expensive, and if you’re growing these plants, your chickens will love the treats that they generate. Growing your own chickens food will save you money and keep both you and them happy. There are so many health benefits to be found by feeding your chickens garlic – so make sure you add some to your garden! http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tradescantia_zebrina, http://www.cockatielcottage.net/houseplants.html, http://abundantpermaculture.com/how-to-herbify-your-chickens-like-lisa-steele/, https://www.coopsandcages.com.au/blog/15-herbs-chickens-will-love/, https://104homestead.com/chicken-safe-plants/, 5 Things to Consider when Building a Chicken Coop. If you have it, you may be able to transplant it to a more desirable location. The payoff is a healthy and productive flock. When plants grow over 5 inches tall, the carbon amount in their leaves increases and is less digestible for chickens. Pests detest aromatic plants and stay away from these scents. Mint WILL take over where the roots can reach. Here are my favourite plants for chickens: Food Plants For Chickens. Take a look at some of these plants that you can grow to supplement your chicken feed. If you’re looking to put some plants in your garden that the chickens won’t touch, have a look at this list: These plants are what we’ve found (from experience) that chickens do not touch. Plants that thrive INSIDE my chicken run: [yes, you read that correctly. You can also cut and carry the harvest directly to your chickens, too. A classic permaculture recommendation is to plant a mulberry tree in or just outside the chicken run. The complete list of boredom busters What about plum? Thyme has strong antibacterial and antibiotic properties. Your email address will not be published. Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. There are dozens of cover crops to choose from, but some popular choices include cereal rye, buckwheat, and winterpeas. Today I’m sharing my top 8 perennial and annual vines that are chicken safe, hardy, and delicious for both you and your flock. And they will continue to feed your chickens for years. They can eat the leaves, stems, vines, flesh, and skins of this plant. Here is a list of plants from my garden (USDA zone 9 - 10/ Sunset zone 22) that I have had success with my chickens leaving alone. If you’re already growing carrots in your garden, why not double your batch and give all the greens to your chickens? Rich in protein and minerals, you’ll have a hard time getting these off your property once they start growing! This low-fiber, high-protein plant is a great source of feed for chickens! I was recently asked what plants could be grown in and around a chicken pen, to provide the chooks with additional food and some green pickings. Dive into the following articles to gain insight […] The chickens will eat the insects that are attracted to those pods, and can also snack on the seeds and foliage, too. Like berries, currants are incredibly easy to grow once you get them established on your property. Your chickens will love berries of all kind, and you don’t need to run to the store to buy these antioxidant-rich jewels, either. You can give them the ears right from the garden, or the leftovers after canning. You can feed lemon balm fresh as a chicken treat or dry it to use it in the nest boxes, sprinkled on the feed, or as a toy. To see how to make a chicken swing and other great gift ideas for your flock, read the post here. Plus, you can grow any type of radish, including cherry belles, watermelons, or Daikons. You can feed any type of peas to chickens, including winter peas and snow peas. You can also buy seeds online if you don’t already have this plant growing wild on your property. Having a flock of backyard chickens means fresh eggs, entertainment, and a sense of self reliance. Very sick. Cover with 1/2 in of loose soil and water well. Tilling it up is not an option when it spreads, as the roots will continue to keep going. Chicken Resistant Plants Gardening with chickens can be a pleasure as well as a frustration and challenge. I'll be planting sunflowers & Blackeyed susans this weeknd for out girls, now that I know they are safe for them to eat! If you’d like to be more selective about what plants your chickens eat, you’ll need to pick them yourself. However, it can backfire if your girls are constantly eating and not producing. A common weed that you can find in nearly any open area, and in many backyards, chickweed is a floppy plant that grows in “mats” low to the ground. There are tons of leafy greens you can grow to feed to your chickens. Is that okay? You will want to cover the seeds by at least 2 inches of water, Drain well and spread seeds on baking sheet or dehydrator tray. Chickens love radishes, and even if you want to save your hard-earned radish crop for yourself, you can still feed the tops to your birds. Often known as “yardus interuptus” as it will take over anywhere it can, mint will provide a natural insect repellent for your chickens. – but it’s also an excellent treat for chickens. Several currant bushes planted closely together will make an excellent living hedge fence for your chickens, and they also help to attract pollinators. Not only are chickens fun and educational, they are beneficial to you and your garden. You can dry them out for you and your family, or give them to your chickens. Consider planting a few varieties, like raspberries and blueberries. As far as what herbs are safe for chickens to eat, there are multiple printouts of herbs that you can feed chickens in this post. They’re excellent companion plants for many common garden plants, and the seeds and flowers are supposedly a natural dewormer for poultry and other types of livestock, too! Wandering Jew causes contact dermatitus in dogs.Chickens love it and it and it is safe for them to eat from all I've read. On the other hand, some plants on the chicken run are great for scratching. To see how to harvest and dry mint for tea, read the post here. Oregano is believed to help improve immune functioning in a variety of creatures – humans and chickens included. It takes a while to get going, but once you do, you’ll have a bountiful crop. Some good options include red clover, alfalfa (as described above), mustard, and grain grasses. When you free-range your flock, you gain helpful gardeners who aerate soil, rid plants of insects, provide composting, and, best of all, supply food — their eggs! They will eat everything, from the crowns to the stems – even the roots and leaves! I use chicken wire instead of hardware cloth. You must log in or register to reply here. You can grow thyme in your herb bed and allow your chickens to forage freely, or harvest it and hang it upside down in the coop for a fresh-smelling treat. Chickens will peck at the heads, getting a leafy treat while warding off boredom. This is because they contain a compound called solanine. Space the hills at least 3 feet apart in rows 3 feet apart. Plantains are used by humans as natural laxatives, but they serve as an excellent source of food for chickens. Ensure your chickens do not have ready access to such plants, especially if you are free ranging your chickens… If egg production drops, you can add slightly more. I have an Apricot Tree that was planted 4yrs ago “pre-chicken.” A cool season crop, it’s highly nutritious and a natural source of green fertilizer, adding nitrogen to the soil. Late cabbages can be started in mid summer, and seedlings planted 12 inches apart. However, it can get quite costly to buy melons at the store, even when they’re in season. Allowing some chickweed to take over an area will provide a delicious, mildly sweet treat for your flock to peck at. Chickens will also enjoy the seeds. Is clematis vine safe for chickens? 2.Close & Plant Your Chicken Run in the Spring. 1,000 square feet will yield you a bushel of wheat berries. And this includes knowing what plants are bad for chickens, especially when they’re free to roam your property. Giving your chickens herbs can help make them happier. Chickens will of course scratch around and eat many plants in the garden, including tender vegetable and fruit crops that you have to fence off. Photo by @Fuchsia! They love treats and love to wander around the garden in search of plants, bugs and juicy worms. In fact, it is going to give your chickens a nice boost in vitamins and minerals. What plants do you grow in your chicken garden? It is not intended to prescribe, diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. They will also eat the root, however, so make sure you save them some extra! Not only do these lovely flowers help to repel pests, but they are also gorgeous to look at. They are thought to help make the yolk a brighter color when you scatter some petals throughout their run. One important aspect of raising chickens is maintaining healthy living environments - ensuring that the flock is always safe. You can mince the garlic and add it to their water, or you can feed it out free-choice once you’ve harvested it. You’ll find a variety of plants that have toxic or poisonous qualities for chickens. Fennel plants not only attract beneficial butterfly larvae and other helpful insects, but they provide valuable chicken feed, too. Happier chickens lay more eggs, and that’s a huge win for you. Most of the time, a good quality chicken feed that you find at the local farm supply store will be sufficient. You can grow a large patch of melons in your garden for just a few dollars, and your chickens will stay well-fed and also hydrated from the all the water in the fruits. Is it just the seeds? Thank you for this! Keep in mind, just because a plant is “safe” does not mean it will be safe from hungry chickens. You can feed both the tops and the roots of this delicious plant, and they will provide your chickens with tons of nutrients and antioxidants. Ration – this is a controversial tip, because providing free-choice feed is a great way to improve your birds’ health and also to improve your overall yields. – or you can harvest a whole batch of peas for a tasty, protein-dense treat. Think carefully about how many chickens you actually need, because those extra birds are probably eating much more food than you might think. Add an extra plant near your chicken run and allow the vines to climb over fencing. A head of cabbage hung by a rope in the coop will make a great toy for your chickens to peck at. nice article but would be nice to know where you compiled the list from? Highly nutritious and well loved by chickens, alfalfa is common among many homesteaders for all their livestock. However, since most of us don’t have that kind of space, you can plant seeds in rows 1 inch apart, and seeds 1 inch deep and harvest enough for a treat for your flock. Does that mean I trust the chickens to 100% never eat anything dangerous, or that I could leave them in their chicken tractor parked over a bed of daffodils. Plants to grow next to coops: basil. To plant alfalfa, plant in rows 18 inches apart, and gently broadcast seeds. My chickens nice plush area of grass and plants looks like a desert now.Thanks for any info. It’s better to be safe than sorry, and to limit their access to poisonous plants in ways that make sense. Provide them with safe access to your yard, and your flock will quickly seek out grass as well as common weeds such as … Inside.] To see how to make a skin soothing salve using calendula, read the post here. As a bonus, the seeds can provide natural de-worming  and parasite control for the chickens. Sweet corn is a delicacy your chicken will love. Garlic is an exceptional immune system booster and can help rid your chickens’ guts of unwanted parasites and other diseases. Lemon balm not only smells great – you may have already guessed that it smells just like lemon! You can harvest anytime after the heads form, typically after 40-50 days. However there are some plants and foods that can cause illness or be fatal to your hungry hens. Giving your chickens a little grain boost will keep them fighting fit, and make their yolks golden and healthy. To harvest a pumpkin, you can check for color, skin firmness, and stem firmness: Harvest the pumpkin by cutting 2 inches above the stem with sharp knife. Think about your flock size – if you only need a dozen chickens to supply enough eggs for your family, why are you raising fifteen? Some creepy crawlies can pose a problem for your feathered flock, and your chook house in general! Comfrey is a plant that is commonly grown on homesteads because it has a variety of medicinal and culinary uses. They particularly live tender ones like kale, spinach, and chard, but they’ll eat plenty of lettuce, amaranth, roach, and spree, too.