Garden season is in full swing and we are so excited! Gardening has always been a big part of our family and raising backyard chickens has propelled our plants into powerhouse producers. There is something so exciting about growing your own food and feeding our family nutritious meals. Composting our chicken poop has been an incredible asset to our gardens.
Some may get turned off by the thought of throwing chicken poop on the dirt where their food is going to grow. I get that! However, when it’s done properly, you’re not just throwing poop on your plants. Raw or “hot” chicken poop can actually burn and damage your plants. Composting their poop, and using it after a few months of breakdown, will benefit the soil, and in turn, grow healthy plants.
Chicken poop compost is rich in nitrogen, potassium, phosphorus and calcium. When using the deep litter method like we do, the chicken bedding (pine shavings), feathers, chicken poop and dropped food is all going into the compost pile. This mixture sounds disgusting but will turn into gold for your gardens.
According to the University of Nevada, Reno, the addition of organic matter to soils increases a soil’s water-holding capacity, improves aeration and drainage, reduces erosion, reduces fertilizer leaching and improves a soil’s structure. They also state that organic matter provides a food source for soil microbes, which increases soil biological diversity, accelerating the breakdown of organic nutrients into forms more readily available to plants. Simply put, microbes release more nutrients to your plants.
We use chicken poop compost in our flower beds as well. Every fall, after we’ve let the chickens scratch around the last bits of the garden, we throw on some compost that has been composting for at least 6-8 months. Then, over the winter, it does its job. In the spring, if we feel we need to, we will add a bit more and till it all in. This creates a rich soil ready for spring planting. Our vegetable plants and our flower beds are so gorgeous and full of wonderful food.
Our very large compost pile! We love to share this goodness with our family and friends as well.
If you’re in an urban area or within city limits, your compost pile may be a bit smaller and that’s okay! I would imagine your flock and garden would be on the smaller side as well. We live on an acreage, so we have a large flock and a large compost pile.
Composting is simple and a great way to reuse matter that is beneficial to your gardens. A lot of people will ask me if it smells like chicken poop. I can honestly tell you it doesn’t! Whew! Our secret? A new Strong Animals product coming soon called Coop to Garden™!
Coop to Garden is an organic fast-acting compost accelerator specially designed to break down chicken litter and bedding in your compost. It contains lemon and lime essential oils, probiotics and patented ingredients to accelerate the recycling of waste. It is effective in a wide range of temperatures and for use in all compost applications.
This product will be launching and online and in stores near you soon! EEEK, I can’t wait for you to try it!
Until next time, happy gardening friends!
–The Wing Lady