Keeping Backyard Chickens

Is Chicken Keeping For You And What's Involved?

Keeping Chickens In The Garden

Keeping backyard chickens is certainly not something that suits everyone.

But once you made the decision and got your first chooks laying their fresh and delicious eggs there is no looking back!

Is Keeping Chickens In Your Garden For You?

With every animal or pet you keep comes the responsibility of looking after it. You have to ask yourself if you are up to the daily chores that are involved with keeping chickens. They need food and clean water every day, they have to be let out of their coops every morning....even on a Sunday!
Locking them up before it gets dark in their coop is essential if you want to make sure they are not going to be eaten by a fox or other predators at night.
Coops and henruns have to be kept clean and need at least a weekly clean out. What is taken out of there is, of course, great for your compost heap and then your garden.


The Basic Needs Of Chickens

  • adequate food and water
  • a coop with enough roosting space for all the hens
  • protection from predators
  • a dust bath
  • a clean nest box for laying the eggs
  • free-range area with greens or mulch/deep litter

What About Noisy Roosters?

Keeping Backyard Chickens

Roosters can be quite noisy and are not always acceptable if you have nearby neighbors. In some areas, you are not even allowed to keep them...so check before you get one.

But if you want to keep only a few hens for the eggs it is not necessary to keep one. They will happily lay their eggs without one. The eggs just won't be fertile and can't be incubated.

Keeping Backyard Chickens: They Can Do More Than Lay Eggs....

Chickens can be great helpers in the garden if used wisely. They are great assistants when it comes to natural pest control.

The chooks are very busy all day scratching the ground looking for slugs, worms, and beetles. They consume seeds of weeds and scratch their little seedlings out of the ground. Of course, they leave little parcels of organic fertilizer behind wherever they go.

backyard chickens

Putting the chickens to work in your garden can be of great benefit but they can also cause problems. Just let loose around the veggie garden they can cause damage to plants and seedlings if you are not careful. Chickens love for example beets and any type of brassicas. Our hens find them absolutely irresistible...so be careful!

Areas, where you don't want the chickens to go into can be fenced with a low temporary fence, made of bamboo canes and plastic mesh fencing. I prefer a plastic mesh to conventional chicken wire because it is a lot easier to work with.
Horticultural fleece, well pegged down around the edges, protects young seedlings and seed beds from our free-ranging chickens.

keeping chickens

If you don't want to your chickens free-ranging in the garden you can use a chicken tractor or electric poultry netting and move them around different areas in the garden.

Vegetable beds that have been harvested can be cleaned and tilled by the chickens. They will get rid of the bugs, slugs, and weeds...automatic fertilization included! And voila....the bed will be ready for the next crop!

The Homestead Gardener Magazine

- organic gardening tips - permaculture - self-sufficiency -

homestead gardener organic gardening magazine

Take Your Organic Gardening Magazine With You Wherever You Go With Our Magazine App!
This interactive digital magazine is optimized for mobile devices like android phones or iPhones, tablets, and iPads. The content is always readable and resizes to fit your screen so it always looks great and is easy to read without zooming in!

Once downloaded to your device you can read the magazine regardless whether you are on or offline.

Test the first issue for FREE now!


Learn More About It Here!

More gardening pages for you...

› Keeping Backyard Chickens

Back to top

Subscribe to our newsletter and receive a FREE ebook ‘Growing Herbs & Vegetables In Containers’

* indicates required

Recent Articles

  1. Using Seaweed In The Garden

    Seaweed is my favorite organic fertilizer, soil improver, and plant growth stimulant in the garden. I like to use it on nearly everything: from compost to planting to sowing!

  2. Earthworm Facts For Gardeners

    These earthworm facts will help you to understand their importance. Learn how to encourage earthworms to work for you in the garden!

  3. How To Take A Cutting

    Learn how to take a cutting and grow free plants for your garden. Propagating plants is really easy and a lot of fun!

New! Comments

Have your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box below.