English Laurel toxic to chickens???

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Adventurefamily5, Jan 17, 2011.

  1. Adventurefamily5

    Adventurefamily5 Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 19, 2010
    Raleigh, NC
    In our neighborhood, we need to "properly screen" our run so that it is not offensive to the neighbors. I selected some beautiful azaleas and was about to put them in, when I discovered they are toxic.

    We decided to put in boxwood, which the landscape nursery did not have... but that is supposedly poisonous, too.

    Then I traded my azaleas for English Laurel. The lady at the nursery thought I was nuts. I brought them home, and guess what? They are on the toxic list. Seems like every plant under the sun is on the toxic list.

    So what do I plant as hedging around the run? Someone else posted that they have laurel and her birds roost in it. Am I being silly? I do have the concern that they will pick at the plant through the wire run because there is nothing green in the coop and you know chickens must investigate everything.

    I had also planned to build a planter for an almond tree and a dwarf cherry, which, surprise! Are toxic, too.

    Any thoughts?
  2. SmartyChick

    SmartyChick An Official Milkmaid

    Oct 19, 2009
    Sullivan County NY
    Hmmm, tough one. I would definitely stay away from the azalea family, laurels are related to azaleas. But I have never seen my chickens peck at a bush, let alone be poisoned by one, but I can see it is better safe than sorry.
    I would try hydrangeas, they can get really bushy and are pretty. Our chickens LOVE burning bushes also, they get huge and beautiful in fall and our chickens roosted in them when we had them.
    Hope you find something that works!
  3. Chickenaddict

    Chickenaddict Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 19, 2008
    East Bethel MN
    I planted some sprigs of trumpet vines around the run last fall to hopefully take over the dog kennel panels and create a more shaded run. Don't dare try hostas they will mow them down in no time flat. Here is a link to a site with non toxic plants listed as well as toxic ones.
  4. flockof4

    flockof4 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 10, 2010
    Webster Groves, MO
    We have a wall of laurel (not sure if it's English or not) that our chickens go under and through all the time and they have been fine. No problems.

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