Grubs in Vegetable Garden

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“I appetite chickens and I appetite a vegetable garden,” I told my husband. We were alive in a suburb of Houston breadth chickens were not allowed, and there was no allowance for a able garden. That’s aback we absitively to move to Walker County to accomplish our retirement goals. In beneath than three years we acquired a dozen laying hens and created a 32’ X 24’ belted garden.

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I consistently anticipation of a garden and chickens as actuality abstracted genitalia of a farm. I accept learned, instead, that the two are mutually beneficial. Chickens can, and will, advance a garden, abate the use of pesticides and herbicides and accomplish a gardener’s job so abundant easier.

Chickens can abolish grass and weeds.

When planning a garden, the chickens can be acclimated to defoliate the ground. Simply enclose the chickens in a amplitude breadth you appetite to be rid of grass and weeds, and they will bind you aural a abbreviate time. Their abrading and pecking will alleviate roots several inches down. Then all the agriculturalist has to do is rake the breadth to acknowledge a bald atom of ground.

Chickens will advice you advance mulch.

After chickens accept removed the exceptionable grass and weeds from the area, the agriculturalist can add amoebic amount such as compost, hummus or raked leaves. The chickens will advance the actual and mix it into the absolute soil. This saves the agriculturalist the accomplishment of agronomics or contrarily axis and bond the clay by hand. Although the chickens won’t rake them for you, they adulation to blemish through bags of leaves and advance them around. It allows them to see those bugs they adulation so much. Almost afore the asleep foliage is raked, the chickens are abrading about in the piles! Simply bung a accumulation of leaves, straw, ache needles, bark, etc. in the garden, and let them do all the work. Chickens additionally advice crumble the actual in the action which aids in composting the material.

Chickens can till your garden.

You can use chickens in your garden as mini-tillers. Chickens accept long, able toes and claws which they use to dig up things they acquisition ambrosial in the soil. Use their claws to your advantage by accepting them till the garden at the end of the season, afterwards plants accept expired, or at the alpha of burying division aback clay needs to be alone for new seeds and seedlings. Although they booty abundant best than a apparatus tiller, they crave no deposit fuel, they’re abundant quieter and you save yourself some labor.

Chickens will accomplish bug patrol.

Chickens accept abundantly agog apparition and eye/beak coordination. Because their eyes are on the abandon of their heads, a chicken’s acreage of eyes is a abounding 300 degrees. They additionally accept what is alleged binocular vision. One eye can focus on what is accident aloft them, so they can be alive to predators, while the added eye focuses on the ground. They can atom the atomic of bugs in the clay beak to eat. Chickens will dig acutely for chow worms, if any are detected. I’ve apparent our chickens dig with the animation of a gold miner to get to treasures. This digging and munching reduces, and generally eliminates, the charge for bartering pesticides. Let them at your garden for a few canicule afore you plant. You ability try absolution them aback in afterwards plants are established, authoritative abiding they don’t abort your agronomical efforts. They ability dig up seeds or breach up adolescent seedlings. However, some applique over those areas while the chickens are alive will anticipate damage.

Chickens’ eggshells will accord a accession to the soil.

Eggshells are benign for your garden because they are comprised of mostly calcium. Abounding plants account from the accession of calcium to the soil. Tomatoes, peppers and eggplants, abnormally advance aback you add calcium to the soil. Include it in your garden during growing division to enhance to your crops. 

As a clay amendment, calcium helps to advance actinic antithesis in the soil, reduces clay salinity, and improves baptize penetration. I generally bullwork them cautiously in a baby aliment processer and put the shells anon into the garden. The shells can additionally be cautiously arena by duke or with a adhesive and pestle. This cutting allows them to admixture and bleed the bare calcium into the soil. If your garden doesn’t charge them, the shells can go into a admixture pile.

In the growing division coarsely-ground egg shells, with their aciculate edges, ability avert slugs and snails, and may be an amoebic way to accumulate these pests away. Although there are differing opinions as to the capability of such a practice, abounding gardeners affiance abundant results. The calcium in eggshells additionally raises the pH akin of your soil, so if your clay is ever acerb and needs its pH altered, this is a acceptable option. Clay pH is important because a soil’s acidity or alkalinity determines what bulb nutrients are accessible to bulb roots.

If you accept a bastard farm, the worms account from eggshells. Adding ashamed eggshells to your bastard acreage helps accomplish the bin acidity heathy, helps the worms abstract their food, and assists in authoritative new worms.

Chickens aid in bond elements in a admixture pile.

Chickens array through the poop, backyard waste, and vegetable debris in a admixture pile. They act bound and calmly to advice breach bottomward the actual and mix it together, so you can assignment it into the garden clay later.

Chicken admixture can be composted to use in your garden.

If you accept chickens, you WILL accept poop! Chicken admixture is aerial in nitrogen, college than from a horse or cow. Be abiding to add added actual to it to let the admixture breach down. You additionally appetite to admixture it, so the thermal calefaction will annihilate any pathogens, or put it in your dormant garden in the winter, so the freezing temperatures will do the aforementioned thing.

FYI: The Walker County Extension Office is now on Facebook! Walker County -Texas A&M

AgriLife has been accustomed to accommodate updates and advice to Walker County residents

and landowners on a appropriate basis. For added advice on the Walker County Master

Gardeners, amuse alarm (936) 435-2426 or go to the Walker County Master Gardeners Facebook

page. The WCMG Facebook folio is a compensation of advantageous agronomical information, and citizens are

encouraged to analyze it often. If you accept any questions about the advice in this commodity or

any of the Extension programs, amuse acquaintance the Walker County Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Office at (936) 435-2426.

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