Gardens & Chickens Mixed

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by A Lucky Ladybug, Mar 9, 2015.

  1. A Lucky Ladybug

    A Lucky Ladybug Out Of The Brooder

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    Quick question for those with Chickens - How high do your Garden beds need to be to keep the chickens out? I am planning low ones for them to graze but don't want them to eat everything I grow for my family as well and I am new to chickens. I wanted to let them roam around the garden to eat the bugs/pests So I was thinking of fencing them in with the garden but trying to keep it out of reach or covered a bit. We have huge hawks in our area so I cannot leave them completely free range
     
  2. triplepurpose

    triplepurpose Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Probably five or six feet high.... Maybe higher if you have a lighter weight breed...

    Do you know anyone who's done this or heard of it being done successfully? I don't see this working for you unless you fence in the garden or cover the beds with chicken wire hoops or something. But then what would be the advantage to having chickens "in the garden," if they're just wandering the paths in between beds?

    There are better ways to integrate chickens and gardens productively IMO. Research the Balfour method, compost runs, the "dueling gardens" system (have two areas, henhouse in the middle, one area is garden, one is chicken run/composting area--then switch them every growing season), etc., etc. All of which will benefit both chickens and veggies more and be far easier to manage.
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2015
  3. A Lucky Ladybug

    A Lucky Ladybug Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you, I am going to research those suggestions. I was just trying to keep the birds somewhere they would enjoy as well as where I will be a ton too while keeping them safe.
     
  4. A Lucky Ladybug

    A Lucky Ladybug Out Of The Brooder

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    After reading through just now I realize the Dueling Garden System is more so what I was looking for. I just wanted to incorporate them throughout instead of switching each year...BUT I might have to keep them out.
     
  5. Hokum Coco

    Hokum Coco Overrun With Chickens

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    [​IMG]

    My run is about 4 ft high. If you clip the feathers on one wing of each bird it will help.

    Make sure there is no blood in the shaft of the feather before you clip or your bird may bleed to death.

    On some birds you may even have to clip a few secondary flight feathers.

    One wing throws the bird off balance and is more effective than trimming equal amounts off both wings.


    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2015
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    My Coop
    Look for chicken moat......it's mesh tunnel of sorts 2-3' wide and high that goes all around the garden, helps the chickens eat bugs making their way into the garden but keeps them out of the garden and safe from predators.
     
    1 person likes this.
  7. arkwelded

    arkwelded Out Of The Brooder

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    I cut my hens wings and it keeps them in a 5 foot high paddock np. I leave my rooster wings intack my thinking is if they ever need to fly to a hen they can. i do not have a problem with them getting in garden boxes as they stay close to the hens
     
  8. A Lucky Ladybug

    A Lucky Ladybug Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you!
     
  9. triplepurpose

    triplepurpose Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Good luck! There are a ton of ways to integrate a chicken flock with a garden. Sometimes people interpret that too literally however. :) there is no reason why they have occupy the same space at the same tine--in fact a lot more reasons why they shouldn't.

    Example: we have our coop near a quarter acre market garden and we feed greens from the garden daily (stuff that won't be eaten or sold). I use the deep litter from the coop regularly to manure the garden in between crops. In addition, we have an attached compost run which we base with a thick layer of leaves, wood chips, etc. Into this goes all kitchen waste, garden waste, etc. The chickens glean from this, shred, mix, and manure it. Then I turn it out into a pallet bin to mature once or twice a year (which happens quick!) which yields about a cubic yard or a ton of nice finished compost, which also is used on the garden.

    About as integrated as can be--yet the chickens never actually set foot in the garden (well, barring accidents like the coop getting left open).
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2015
    1 person likes this.
  10. jennabug

    jennabug Out Of The Brooder

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    Hi there! I've been thinking about moving my coop out to the garden area and have been passively researching this too. This site had a few good ideas: http://modernfarmer.com/2013/06/how-to-chicken-proof-your-garden/

    As far as I've read, you'd want to put a barricade around the things they think are tasty... Tomatoes, Carrot Tops etc. Personally I was considering dong some high raised beds, about 3 ft tall, then adding some removable wire fencing around the top... similar to this ...
    [​IMG]
    Obviously you'd want something that would be easier to open or collapse. But I'd love to get my chickies to weed between the beds and have better compost access. :) If you move forward with this I'd be interested to hear how it works out. Cheers!
     

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