Growing my own chicken feed

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Country Parson, Dec 13, 2010.

  1. Country Parson

    Country Parson Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 1, 2010
    Bellefontaine, OH
    I have a fairly large garden plot (40x120ft), which would easily be doubled (or made even larger yet) Of the current plot, I'll use about half of it for vegetables. I am planning on growing as much chicken & geese feed as I can for the winter. I have about 10 hens, 4 pilgrim geese, and 3 muscovy ducks, and I'll geese next winter I'll have about the same amount (maybe a few more Muscovies).

    The current plan is to grow various root crops for winter storage & feed. This will include turnips, mangels, & rutabagas.

    The BIG question is what type of grain I should grow. I've planned to set aside a 15ftx120ft section of the garden for spring Wheat. But I'm wondering what other grains I should grow (FYI, I live in central/west Ohio, west of Columbus).

    Currently I am also considering the following:


    I do plan on growing buckwheat and possibly even cowpeas---as well as clover (but these will be more for 'in-season' feeding).

    Does anyone have any experience with growing your own grains on a smaller scale? Any advice in terms of how much I should grow or what kinds of grains would be wise?
  2. Moabite

    Moabite Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 24, 2010
    Black oil sunflowers are easy to grow.
  3. Country Parson

    Country Parson Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 1, 2010
    Bellefontaine, OH
    I forgot to mention I do plan on putting in at least one 40ft row of sunflowers. I got about 20 heads this Fall from a friend that just grew them for fun. The hens seem to love them. I don't even bother getting the seeds out of the head---the chickens do all the work for me. Not sure how much this is making a dent in my feed bill, but the hens are having fun.
  4. sammileah

    sammileah Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 1, 2009
    central ia
    i did cowpeas, sunflowers, amerathus (sp?), and dent corn (ok i don't grow it i collect it). i also freeze any extra veggies that won't get eaten in time during the summer. during canning season half the by products go in freezer for later.
  5. Country Parson

    Country Parson Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 1, 2010
    Bellefontaine, OH
    sammileah, tell me about your cowpeas. How much did you grow? How did you grow them? What were the harvest results? How did you make use of them as feed?
  6. HeritageHens

    HeritageHens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 9, 2010
    Have you looked at the book "Home Grown Whole Grains ?" I have the book but haven't read it yet. You might find some good ideas in there. You could see if your local library has a copy.
  7. fl_deb

    fl_deb Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 7, 2010
    Go for sprouting your seeds to maximise nutrient value to birds. there is a current thread going on

    Best of luck!
  8. BarredBuff

    BarredBuff Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 6, 2009
  9. the-bird-man

    the-bird-man Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 24, 2010
    land of the sun
    millet it very easy to grow. you can also just buy a bag of bird seed mix and spread it on the ground then just rake in. you can also grow corn and let it dry in the sun. i do not think the other stuff would be too hard to grow. you can also make a hoop house and grow stuff year round, they are easy to make and protect some plants very well
  10. headworm

    headworm Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 2, 2014
    I simply get a bag of scratch mix, mix in some peas and any other seeds I have on hand and plant that. I harvest the tops with a sickle when I want to feed the chooks. Hope that helps.

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