Giving your chickens fresh veggies as part of their diet is incredibly good for them. If you’ve got a green thumb and want to plant a little patch for your girls to feast on, then why not incorporate some of these goodies.
If you are going to section off a nice little veggie patch for your girls, it’s best to ensure there’s a wire mesh fence around it, unless they’re in a run. In fact, it’s a great idea to separate each different section of the veggie patch into quarters, so the chickens rotate around and get the goodness from everything, instead of gobbling up just one kind of the tasty morsel.
Incorporating leafy greens into your chicken’s diet is one of the best things you can do for it! Spring time is perfect season to quickly grow some green veggies - why not try some of these.
Lettuce, spinach, kale, cabbage
These plants can grow in slightly cooler temperatures, so you can start growing them before Spring is in its peek. When the weather is warm, the plants will grow very quickly. Whether they’re feasting on the leaves or pecking on the leftover seeds on the ground - your chickens will eat their greens more than your children will!
Pumpkin and Squash
Yummo! Your chickens looove pumpkin and squash. The great thing about these veggies is that they keep for a long time - probably not something you’ll have to worry about, your chickens will have gobbled them up by then!
With pumpkin, just plant a few seedlings - once they’ve grown to around 6 inches tall, pull out all but the strongest. You’ll certainly have no shortage of pumpkins with just one or two plants. You can even feed your chickens the plants that didn’t make the cut.
Plant squash seeds into warmed soil (once the winter frosts have passed)
Giving your chickens a little grain boost will keep them fighting fit, and make their yolks golden and healthy.
Wheat, rye, barley
Grains are great for your chicken’s health - grains are packed with juicy vitamins. Sow them into the ground and let them grow to around 4 inches in height, then snip the little bits off the top and scatter them around for your girls to forage and peck at. One great perk of grains is that they’ll make your chickens egg yolk a vibrant yellow!
Sprouts are a wonderful, chewy treats for your chickens that are packed full of vitamins. Grow them until they’re around 4 inches long, then scatter them about for your chickens to enjoy.You can really get creative with the way you grow sprouts - that’s the beauty of them! Jars are always a great choice, glass containers...even sponges have been known to work.
Spring is the perfect time to start indulging that green thumb of yours - after the winter you’ve had, you must be chomping at the bit to start digging and planting! Why not spend a little time planting your chickens their own little slice of veggie patch heaven - their health will thank you for it.
Many gardeners buy coops for their chickens that have a run attached, which they love to landscape and grow veggies in. This gives your chickens something to peck at, keeping them amused and well fed - whilst also giving them all the diet goodness that they need.
There are plenty of seasonal plants to consider for your flock. However, each season does come with its own rewards and challenges in the chicken keeping world. Come rain or shine, something we’ll never be able to control is the weather! This can be a worry and concern when thinking about the safety and comfort of your backyard friends.
Cluckily, you can prepare for all seasons thanks to our friends over at Chickenpedia. I recommend their brilliant Weatherproof Chickens course to all my readers! They have compiled a guide of everything you need to keep healthy chickens through the seasons (which is more than you think!) with a great set of checklists and downloads to keep. Dangerous conditions including dehydration and frostbite can be avoided with the correct information and actions. Whatever the weather, this course will help you keep your chickens happy and healthy all year round.
As chicken keepers, we want to do an eggcellent job when caring for our feathered friends. Many chicken keepers struggle to handle chicken health or behaviour issues, especially in the first few years of having a flock. Chickenpedia have comprehensive online courses on everything you didn’t know you need to know and then some more! From healthcare to raising baby chicks to feeding and behavior, you’ll find beginner-friendly courses that’ll give you the knowledge and confidence to successfully look after your chickens.
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