anybody got any gardening ideas for the chicken run , so they can eat something other than grass and

Discussion in 'Gardening' started by WildBilly, Mar 11, 2013.

  1. WildBilly

    WildBilly Chillin' With My Peeps

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    i am 5 and 1/2 months new to chickens now, it will be a first wspring which should be fun to see them outside. any plants or weeds, vegetables to plant in the run for them chickens? i'd love some ideas that seem to work well for your chickens and then i could try them myself for my fun flock.
    [​IMG]
     
  2. 1muttsfan

    1muttsfan Overrun With Chickens

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    Anything you plant in the run will be demolished as soon as it sprouts - chickens are great at weeding. You can plant a plot of grass or cereal grain for them, and just allow them access occasionally.
     
  3. ChickensRDinos

    ChickensRDinos Chillin' With My Peeps

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    x2 Anything planted freely in the run that they have access to will be very quickly destroyed. Most seeds are pesticide treated so you want to make sure they are not eating those.

    You can do screens like this so they can only graze the tops.

    http://www.thegardencoop.com/blog/2012/02/07/grazing-frames-backyard-chickens/

    Or you can grow fodder and give them a nice healthy brick each day. I just started sprouting a mix of wheat, barley and BOSS and it was super easy and they love it.

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/713334/growing-fodder-for-chickens
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2013
  4. pastryman

    pastryman Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Unless it is a big run, they will eventually eat or destroy all plants on the ground. Unless it has big thorns.

    You could make a salad bar with mesh on top.
    You could plant bushes with berries just on the other side of the fence (or inside, and protect if needed).


    I have the plants in my garden instead. And let them free-range allover almost every afternoon.
    And I give them some leftovers from the garden or kitchen in the run.
    A green run full of plants must be very big. Even with only 5-10 chickens. It will be very difficult to protect with fence.
     
  5. WildBilly

    WildBilly Chillin' With My Peeps

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    yea those screens are cool, i truly did not know they would eat the sprouts when i typd this thread....
     
  6. WildBilly

    WildBilly Chillin' With My Peeps

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    thank you ChickensRDinos, for the garden coop page link i like the loo[​IMG]ks of those chicken wire platforms.
     
  7. erinszoo

    erinszoo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We did the wire chicken platform for a salad bar last year but they didn't work well. The sprouts grew well and all but every day as soon as the chickens had access they ate everything they could reach. AFter day one there was never anything growing they could get to because it didn't grow enough between overnight. We give ours fodder now, veggie scraps, and stuff from the garden. Last year we grew a bed of greens for them only and harvested some every day for them. At the end of the season we let them clean it up. I also buy cheap veggies at the store each week, whatever's on sale for less than a dollar - cabbage, cantalope, strawberries, tomatoes, and especially big pumpkins around halloween. We have friends with apple trees too that let us pick whatever we want so we have buckets and buckets of apples that we cut up and throw to them too. I have to say though, sprouts and fodder are their absolute favorite things.
     
  8. WildBilly

    WildBilly Chillin' With My Peeps

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    thank you erinszoo, i appreciate the advice in advance [​IMG]
     
  9. Hatch N Eggs

    Hatch N Eggs Out Of The Brooder

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    I plan on putting in marigolds and millet this year for my flock. But of course they will only have a limited access to them.
     
  10. ChickensRDinos

    ChickensRDinos Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think if you want nice greens every single day then fodder is the way to go. It takes about 6 days to go from seed to nice healthy sprouts. WIth pretty minimal effort you have a nice brick of greens every day.

    I have also heard of people doing a few potted plants in the run that they switch out to give each one time to regrow. I have not personally tried that but it seems like it would work if you have enough of them.
     

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