Shade trees and plants

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by LALADY1101, Jun 1, 2010.

  1. LALADY1101

    LALADY1101 Songster

    May 15, 2009
    Lake Charles, LA
    What do ya'll use for shade for your free range chickens? I'm in SW Louisiana and it is smokin hot!! It breaks my heart to see them panting. They can get in and under their coops for shade but I'd like to provide them with some non-poisonous plants and shrubs. What else can I do to help keep them cool?
  2. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    My coop and "chicken yard" (the area immediately surrounding the coop, fenced to keep cows out, but not chickens in) is naturally shaded by a multitude of shrubs and trees.
    For added cooling, trying freezing gallon milk jugs filled with water or even 2 liter coke bottles and lay them around where the chickens frequent. They like to lay near them to cool off.
    I keep a hose dripping near them too. They like to dig and then lay in the wet dirt to cool off.
    Forgot to add that we also have two box fans set to low running in the coop.
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2010
  3. nzpouter

    nzpouter Songster

    Jan 19, 2009
    new zealand
    we use fruit trees, apples, pears, peach, etc...
  4. bock

    bock Songster

    Oct 10, 2008
    Northern CA
    I have the same issue. I once lost a cochin rooster on a 118F day.
  5. LeftAtAlbuquerque

    LeftAtAlbuquerque In the Brooder

    Thanks, this helps me too. I would like to plant some shrubs for them in one area - it's just gravel and very little rainfall.
  6. fldiver97

    fldiver97 Songster

    Aug 5, 2009
    Middleton, WI
    check with a nursery for some suitable (climate,soil etc) shrub suggestions or check on line. I used to live in Florida and turned my all grass except one old bare tree backyard into a butterfly/bird garden using natives. I ended up with an easy to care for yard, some grass in the center and a nice shady corner for a bench and room for the dog to hang out in the shade. Now I live in Wisconsin and I have done similar 'yardwork'.....hate having just grass and mowing.....I planted natives, small trees, shrubs and also a raingarden and all the plants are doing well. The chickens love it as they have lots of shady spots, lots of shelter. The birds and butterlies are also happy. I am a lazy gardener, also don't like to water much. So I spend some time at the library, on-line and checking with a couple of nurseries to find out what would work despite my 'black thumbs'....Also consider some plants like vines that grow fast to give you a chance to let them create shady areas with the help of a trellis or some arches
  7. cybercat

    cybercat Songster

    May 22, 2007
    Greeneville, Tn
    Any of the wide spreading trees would work. Oak are good try southern oak for your area. Willows, maples, mulberrys these will be faster growers than oaks. Sumacs are great also and fast growing. My coop is next to them and I am putting in a willow on the other side. Behind we are planning on pecan trees.
  8. Tala

    Tala Flock Mistress

    Quote:My neighbor has a pecan tree that is near the fenceline. Durn tree drops a lot of limbs and has caused a lot of damage to the shared chainlink fence (it no longer has most of it's top rails and the remaining ones are bent) and less than 2 weeks after I installed my clothesline a limb fell out of the pecan tree on the wires and leaned in BOTH of my T-posts......
    Pecan tree = bad idea, IMO.
  9. cybercat

    cybercat Songster

    May 22, 2007
    Greeneville, Tn
    Thank you Tala for the info. For me it is not an issue as we are on acreage. Not building or poer lines or fence will be near these trees. Also young trees will not drop as much. Which reminds me do not forget to fertilze trees that will halp alot towrds not dropping limbs and such. People do not think of tree nutriution like the do flowers and veggies. but they need it just as much as other plants.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by