Help With Plants


In the Brooder
8 Years
Dec 9, 2011
Hello- I'm new to peacocks and recently acquired 2. I have them in a 740sq ft pen but as of right now it's bare. This spring I'm going to plant Bermuda (in Texas and it does well in the heat), but I was wanting to put some plants in also. Someone told me they do well with purple fountain grass, which I Love, but was wanting a little something else. I was also gonna to set aside an area of sand. My chickens love theirs, do peacocks like sand baths also? Open to any opinions! Thank You!!
I keep a large section of sand for my birds too. They do enjoy the ability to scratch in it, and it tends to keep the grass in better shape then.
They won't eat banana trees I've heard -- fixing to transplant some into my pea pen. And they won't eat our little native plum trees either- I have some of those coming up from stray seeds.
Peafowl like taking dirt baths in sand too. I put in the contractors sand that has the little rocks they need. I've tried planting grass a couple times but the trample it to death. When I add the big family room onto the existing 4 - 10' by 30' pens I'll plant some things and try grass again. Where are you in Texas? I'm about 30 miles north of San Antonio. Congradulations on taking the plunge of owning these gorgeous birds. There was an India Blue peacock here 4 years ago when we bought the 5 acres. Now I have 25, LOL!!! India Blue, Java, Black Shoulder, Spaldings and Pied, one being white-eyed. Just bought him a few days ago and he is spectacular looking. Would have had some of my 11 - 75% Java Green Spalding chicks sold but I'm to picky about where they're going. They are pets, eat from my hand and let me tough them so much .... want them to have good homes.
I love planting the peafowl pen! Planting a peafowl pen is trial and error. Some plants the birds will tear up, some of them they don't even mess with, and some you don't think will do great in the pen and after a few days the birds have totally dug it up and torn it to shreds. I planted one plant that had pink, white, and green leaves. Maybe the birds were over interested in the color because they scratched that plant up. I watched them do it they didn't even like eating it they just scratched it up. A nearby breeder has a beautiful small pen for peachicks that she keeps a few large banana plants in with no problem but when I planted a banana plant in my pen the birds ate it all. The general rule I have found with plants is the soft ones normally don't fair so well with the birds, but some are an exception. Mostly all grasses can survive peafowl as long as they are not trampling the grass so the taller the better.

I would show you some pictures of the plants in my pen, but my photobucket account has run out of bandwidth because of too many views of my pictures but I can tell you some of the plants I have in my pen that work well.

1. Clumping bamboo is one of my favorites. Bamboo is hardy and provides great shade for the peafowl in the summer. It doesn't take it too long for the clump to get nice and mature giving the birds plenty of shade and the peafowl don't eat the leaves. Just make sure you get the clumping kind and NOT the running kind of bamboo. You can always cut some of the stalks to keep the clump looking less dense. 6.jpg

2. Zebra grass. Zebra grass gets big and it has a cool stripe pattern on it. I am going to try planting some lemon grass this spring too.

3. Lantana- The lantanas in the peafowl pen grew there on their own. I think there used to be lantanas growing in the location the pen is now at and so since I have been watering all the plants in the pen several lantana plants have popped up. I really like them and one of my peahens nested under one. Lantanas have beautiful flowers that cover them through most of the spring and summer time. The only negative I could see is maybe they might spread since they are popping up all over the pen.'Desert+Sunset'.JPG

4. Fatsia- This plant is amazing!!! I have three of these two are small and one is big. Fatsias have a tropical look but they retain their green during the winter. I am in the cold part of Florida so I am always wishing we could be just a bit warmer here so I could grow tropicals, but the fatsia is a great substitution and the peafowl don't mess with it but rather rest underneath it too.

5. Giant iris- I got this one at the Home Depot which is were I find a lot of great plants. I love the looks of the leaves on this plant. A lot of bugs hide in this plant so the peafowl like to look through the plant for bugs. The flowers are beautiful. We have one on the front porch and that one blooms but the one planted in the peafowl pen hasn't bloomed at all yet. That doesn't matter much to me though since just the leaves are nice to me.

6. Cast iron plant- We got tons of these for free. A local church was throwing these plants out because they couldn't get them to grow! I think these plants need a bit of shade to really do well. I love these plants. My peafowl walk through them and scratch around for bugs in them but don't mess up the plant. This is another plant that stays green all year round. iron WEB SIZE.JPG

7. Japanese Maple- I can't wait for my japanese maple to get as nice as the one in this photo! Right now mine is a little lame but the peafowl don't eat the leaves so that is always good!

8. philodendron- The leaves die in the winter but the leaves are really cool looking. I was so happy to find out this plant can survive here.

Some things I keep outside the pen for decoration are cannas, the bananas, and heliconia.

That is mainly what I have in my pen, there are probably a few more things and some things I don't know the name of!
Thanks MinxFox for those suggestions. I've also been wondering what to plant and as we live near each other I'm sure these should grow for my boys. That is if my black thumb doesn't kill the plants before they get a chance to grow.
These plants don't really take much care so they should grow well for you even if you don't have a green thumb. The bamboo garden we got the bamboo from the guy said all this stuff I had to do to the bamboo to make it grow like put a whole bunch of stuff around it and all this stuff. I did that when I first planted it but I didn't really follow his directions and I mainly just scooped up and dumped some of the peafowl poo around the bamboo and it has really taken off this year. The first year it wasn't growing much, the second year it got a few new shoots but this year it has had at least 10 shoots. Mainly in the Spring and Summer I water the plants about once a week. Mainly you can tell if the plants need water like if they start to droop or something. With the bamboo it is really easy to tell when it needs water. The leaves will curl and that is when you know it needs water.

Talking about planting is getting me excited to plant again! I can't wait to maybe even look into getting a new kind of clumping bamboo. Oh and another tip, when you get a new plant and you are not sure if the peafowl will eat it or not, take it into the pen and leave it in the container and see if the peafowl peck at it. Sometimes they peck the plant but then realize they don't like the taste or something and they leave it alone. Also watch out because sometimes they will leave a plant alone for days and then one day you go out to the pen and the plant is torn up. It is so weird! My peafowl get very curious when I plant something. They get all in my way looking in the hole I am digging and they look through the dirt searching for grubs and other bugs.
Where is the bamboo garden you purchased your bamboo from? I get all my plants from Lowes or Home Depot here and would love an excuse to run over to Pensacola if it's there.
The bamboo garden we got our bamboo at is called Boo For You and here is their website and the page that has their contact information:

The guy who owns the garden has free-range chickens, guineas, and one peacock so he probably understands what the birds will eat up and what they won't. He has a few large greenhouses with some unique tropical plants inside that I like to look at. The last time we visited him he was cutting down a few trees to make room for other plants. The cool thing about Boo For You is since it is a garden, you can see what the plant you are getting will look like when it is mature. The owner is really knowledgeable and will make sure you find what you are looking for.
Thank you so much, I can't wait to check it out. It sounds like a fun day out and I could really benefit from talking to someone who knows what they're talking about instead of someone who has just been stationed in the garden section for the day.

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