Chicken Poo for your garden

Discussion in 'Gardening' started by Rachel Taylor, Apr 5, 2018.

  1. Rachel Taylor

    Rachel Taylor Crowing

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    OK. Well who doesn’t want to make use of all that chicken poop we have right? I used it last year in my garden after letting it sit for about three months and turning it every couple days during those three months. Some of my plants seem to die from the ground up last year and I thought maybe it was a bad growing year A lot of people are having problems. Now I’m reading that chicken poo should set for 6 to 12 months before Use or it could burn your veggies. I’ve never had my plants burn and wondering if that’s what happened last year Or maybe just a coincidence. Because I didn’t add much. But 6 to 12 months? Does anyone know or have experience on this matter no matter how many times I try to research it I get completely different Information everywhere
     
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  2. cavemanrich

    cavemanrich Crossing the Road

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    It is true that too much chicken droppings can in fact burn your plants. I use my chicken droppings to fertilize my young trees. Some of that fertilizer also migrates to the adjoining lilies. I just place on surface and snow and rain slowly distributes it. Never had burning issues with those plants. I also scatter some on other flower beds, but in the fall and winter. Over the dormant period the fertilizer gets diluted and distributed throughout the flower bed. No burning occurred for me.
    Many peeps place their chicken gumdrops into their compost piles. This does dilute the strength .
    If you take a scoop of the manure and place it directly under your plants, it may be too strong of a concentration for given area/volume of earth.
    WISHING YOU BEST...... :thumbsup
     
  3. Rachel Taylor

    Rachel Taylor Crowing

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    I’m sure I didn’t use too much because last year I only had eight chickens to get droppings from and a 30 x 30 garden. More garden area and more chickens this year . But I was afraid maybe I didn’t let it sit long enough. But I’m not sure how long is long enough I’m used to my Goat manure. That stuff can go directly in And because it is in pellets it slowly Releases the nutrients. But I know the chicken manure is especially good for certain types of plants
     
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  4. cavemanrich

    cavemanrich Crossing the Road

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    I forgot to mention, that I do not age my chicken gumdrops at all. I just spread on surface when I clean out coop. I do not have many chickens.
    Maybe your gardening mishap just was coincidental. :idunno
     
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  5. Rachel Taylor

    Rachel Taylor Crowing

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    It very well could have been coincidental. I’ve always read that you need to aerate the chicken manure But maybe you don’t if you apply it correctly. Since you were able to.Maybe I will just add it to my compost bin and maybe that will help dilute it so I will be so nervous About burning my veggies.
     
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  6. HoopyFrood

    HoopyFrood Songster

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    If you search for pictures of nitrogen burn on the plants you grew last year you can see if that visually matches what you saw: you said the plants appeared to "die from the ground up?"

    If you didn't use a lot of chicken poo and it was aged for three months I'm guessing it's unlikely that you burned your plants doing that. But I could be wrong :)

    There's nothing magical about chicken poo. It's just very high in nitrogen. That's what the white stuff on the poo is: urea. Mammals excrete urea in urine (hence the name), but birds excrete it with their solid waste. So if you're using mammal poop as fertilizer, by definition, it is much lower in nitrogen than any poultry manure. So you won't risk burning your plants with it.

    Nitrogen is the most volatile of the plant nutrients. It readily leaches into the ground as nitrates when it gets rained into the soil. But too much rain and it travels right past the root zone and into the groundwater where it becomes a pollutant. Or if it sits wet on the surface of the ground and isn't consumed by plants or other composting organisms (like the kind that break down woody proteins) then it will be released into the atmosphere as ammonia. If you can smell ammonia in your compost pile, add some carbon material. That way the N won't get wasted :)

    Both are likely to happen to some degree or another as you age a manure pile. That's why you won't burn plants nearly as easily with aged chicken poop.

    But it's also a shame to be losing those nutrients that could be put to very good use in your garden!

    That is part of the heart of composting. The longer compost ages, the more humus will result, but the fewer nutrients it will contain. Fully composted material has very little nutritional value for plants. But it's almost 100% invaluable, soil-building humus. Less composted material has more nutrients for plants, but isn't broken down into humus. You need bio-available (aka mineralized) plant nutrients AND organic matter (humus) for plants (and everything else in the soil) to really thrive.

    Don't be afraid to experiment to find out how your chicken poo piles and garden will play together optimally. Perhaps try different methods in different areas each season? If you had a little patch that you wanted to grow nitrogen-loving veggies on, perhaps try incorporating a generous amount of fresh chicken poo in part of that patch of soil four weeks before (trans)planting. What are the differences in the plants between the poo and non-poo treated areas?

    For things you DON'T want lots of unnecessary vegetative growth out of (e.g. tomatoes) DON'T incorporate fresh(ish) chicken poo at all. Use aged stuff or try mammalian poo.

    Also note that phosphorus and especially potassium do NOT readily leach out of soil. If you add a lot of animal manure to the same patch of soil year after year you can build up too much of both P and K and that will create it's own set of problems.

    I like to think of forests and grasslands. How much animal poop is required to keep those wild lands fertile? Essentially none. The plants (and the organisms living with the plants) do almost all of their own nutrient recycling. The poop is incidental.

    I'm trying to garden the same way :) Green manures for the win! My long term goal is no fertilizers whatsoever. Ask me in the fall how well my first season trying this went :lol:
     
  7. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Crossing the Road

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    :gig
     
  8. camocutey

    camocutey In the Brooder

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    I have been using chicken manure on my garden beds. I spread it on them about 2 months ago. Everything is coming up nicely and nothing is burned. I also spread it around all my fruit trees. I added it to my greenhouse beds and mixed it with cow manure. I did not let it sit and age first, it came straight from the coop. I did not use a lot, but I will have to wait to see if it burns any of my plants.
     
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  9. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Crossing the Road

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    2 months should be fine.
     
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