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Plants in the chicken pen

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I went to visit a chap to reserve some Bantams this week, & he had lots of lovely plants in his chicken run which the little ones were enjoying scuttling under.They were ferny & palmy things.

I know that Bantams are less likely to eat plants than big hens,so I am going to do some planting in their pen , but I would also like to do some planting in the big girls pen .......& they eat everything!


Has anyone planted in their pen & found something the chickens ignore?

The only thing I have found that my girls won't eat is bindweed - & a lot of help that is :roll:

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:) Having started the other way round, we built our run around an existing planted area, I can tell you what worked for us. The best thing has been a castor oil plant, they grow beautifully here. It's fairly mature and gives great shade, and also shelter from rain, from what I can remember from when we did have some rain. It gives them a good hiding and dustbathing area. It may take a couple of years to be big enough to go under, but it will look good from the start, requires no maintenance, and they have never pecked the leaves at all!

Also growing were a holly, a yew and a thing I can't remember the name...has blue flowers & can be shrub or tree like. Ours is the latter (because it needs pruning :roll: ) and is now growing through the wires, making the area merge very well into the garden. I wouldn't deliberately plant yew, but it's there providing all year greenery & shelter. Holly, again evergreen, and they won't nibble! But hard if you have a new bird who decides to roost there! :roll::lol:

Many plants out there, but thought my example would show how well evergreen shrubs can work, and how much I love the castor oil plant! :lol:

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Well I have some roses growing in our pen - they were already established. I have noticed that either some passion flower or clematis ( :oops: ) has started to grow again this year and has not been uprooted.


I planted some climbing plants in there and a shrub in a pot, but they didn't last long and didn't get a chance to establish themselves. Silly of me because I knew that would happen, but just went ahead anyway! So it may be best to buy something well-established and plant it in before they arrive!

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