Best vine for growing on chicken run fene

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by lonelychicken, Jan 8, 2013.

  1. lonelychicken

    lonelychicken In the Brooder

    Jul 17, 2012
    I only have 5 hens - but that is plenty for our family. They have a 5' chain link fenced chiken yard 12' x 20' and it is covered with a predator netting, which has worked brilliantly so far.

    I want to plant som vines to grow up the chain link fence and also some vines that will grow up the fence and then over the netting. the vines on the side of the run I would like to have either flowers, beans or berries that the chickens could benefit from harvesting. I also don't want to plant anything that would be harmful to the girls.

    My first thought is to plant a few sunflowers and then hang the big flower heads upside down once they dry out. I also thought about wild climbing roses, but don't know if the chickens would like them or not.

    Appreciate your thoughts and suggestions.


  2. AVintageLife

    AVintageLife Chirping

    Jun 7, 2012
    New Hampshire
    I just read about something called "malabar spinach". It's a spinach plant that climbs up and gets big and bushy and loaded with spinach leaves. I'm going to see if I can find some to grow outside the run/coop and I figure the chickens can nibble on it when they're out and about foraging and the upper parts of the plants that they can't reach will be for me. I also plant the big sunflower plants but when I put one of the heads out for my flock, they didn't know what to do with it. I ended up having to clean out all the seeds to give to them....lazy chickens.....
  3. HouseCat

    HouseCat Songster

    I've got raspberry bushes growing around my coop. The chickens love the berries and leaves. The bushes grow like weeds so they put up with the chickens great. They also provide excellent cover to hide and dust bathe in.
  4. chfite

    chfite Songster

    Jun 7, 2011
    Taylors, SC
    I have volunteer cherry tomatoes that grow up around the run. I have to shield them until they get fairly to large to insure that the chickens don't eat the plants to the ground before they get to be large enough to survive.

  5. we3ernes

    we3ernes Songster

    Jan 2, 2013
    China Spring, Texas
    I have Malabar Spinach, it doesn't like full sun, it really prefers a shady area. But, it is pretty, interesting to look at, and the leaves are edible (at least, I know humans can eat the leaves). Check on the berries though, I'm not sure if they are edible or not, and they DO stain everything!
  6. knbjonz

    knbjonz Hatching

    Jun 12, 2013
    as far as the malabar spinach is concerned, I just watched a video from and John, the host, ate some of the berries, but not the seeds. I guess the berries are safe... at least for humans. I'm personally going to try growing some malabar in my garden and hope to give some to the chickens.
  7. Mtn Laurel

    Mtn Laurel Songster

    May 18, 2012
    Northern Virginia
    My Coop
    We're in the process of doing a new run and my plan is to have a raised bed around the exterior and put in vines to climb up the side for the summer. I want to do pole beans and cukes, both of which do really well here and the girls can have the harvest. I'm intrigued by the[FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif] Malabar spinach and will have to check it out. [/FONT]

  8. Hokum Coco

    Hokum Coco Crowing

    Dec 6, 2012
    New Brunswick,Canada
    If you chickens are anything like mine the best vines or plants would either be made out of wood, plastic, or metal. Mine seem to destroy anything green insight.
  9. shmccarthy

    shmccarthy Songster

    Mar 27, 2013
    This is my coop ^ as you can see... You can't really see it! I originally cut all the vines off, but they were persistent and kept growing. They ended up providing natural shade, plus hawks can't see into the run. I don't know some of the vines, but they're really thick, some being 4" thick! The ones I know are blackberry and blueberry and small wine grapes. I have no way to identify the other vines that grow on it, but for the last year, it's worked really well for me.
  10. steny03

    steny03 Chirping

    May 13, 2013
    I don't have my hens yet (due tomorrow or day after), but I planted grape vines on one side of my run, and honeysuckle on the other. I'm in the high desert of Nevada. So far the grapes are flourishing. I like how they have the nice large leaves, and seem pretty tolerant of dry conditions.

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