cover crops for chickens

tbunyard

Hatching
Jul 30, 2016
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MISSISSIPPI
IM thinking about planting something better than grass in my yard for the chickens. Ive got the hillside planted in buckwheat and they love that but I'm leaning more towards some crimson clover for the yard. any suggestions?
 

ChickenCanoe

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You're right for moving away from grass. It isn't particularly nutritious for poultry and is one of the last things they choose to eat.
Any type of forb like clover/ladino, also alfalfa, beets, turnips, radish and in cold weather you could do peas. There is a forage type of turnip called 7top. Most of the energy goes into greenery rather than a tuber.
 

Folly's place

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I think that mixed plantings are best rather than monoculture. Check out pasture blends, native plants, wildlife mixes. Also fruiting shrubs, both for cover and food. you will also bring in beneficial (and yummy) insects, and critters in the soil. Mary
 

tbunyard

Hatching
Jul 30, 2016
9
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MISSISSIPPI
You're right for moving away from grass. It isn't particularly nutritious for poultry and is one of the last things they choose to eat.
Any type of forb like clover/ladino, also alfalfa, beets, turnips, radish and in cold weather you could do peas. There is a forage type of turnip called 7top. Most of the energy goes into greenery rather than a tuber.
ok thanks. what about some vetch in winter. too thick?
 

tbunyard

Hatching
Jul 30, 2016
9
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MISSISSIPPI
I think that mixed plantings are best rather than monoculture. Check out pasture blends, native plants, wildlife mixes. Also fruiting shrubs, both for cover and food. you will also bring in beneficial (and yummy) insects, and critters in the soil. Mary
thanks. yea I'm amazed at how many bees and crickets the buckwheat pulled in.
 

ChickenCanoe

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lazy gardener

Crossing the Road
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Nov 7, 2012
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How big is your yard? Do you want to maintain somewhat of a resemblance to lawn, or are you ok with a wilder, meadow/mixed shrub type of yard? Will your front yard be used for any type of family recreation? White clover mixes into lawns well, attracts lots of pollinators. (can be an issue with young kids who like to romp and play) Give more details about available space, soil type, sun exposure, dry/wet spots, do you have time or water available to take care of dry soil issues?
 

amynrichie

Songster
7 Years
Jan 29, 2013
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Nebraska Panhandle
How big is your yard?  Do you want to maintain  somewhat of a resemblance to lawn, or are you ok with a wilder, meadow/mixed shrub type of yard?  Will your front yard be used for any type of family recreation?  White clover mixes into lawns well, attracts lots of pollinators.  (can be an issue with young kids who like to romp and play)  Give more details about available space, soil type, sun exposure, dry/wet spots, do you have time or water available to take care of dry soil issues?  


What are some ideas for overseeding with some wilder type grasses? I have some natural grass, and LOTS of cheat grass. I'm going to seed something over that will choke out the cheat.
 

MANNA-PRO

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