Muddy garden

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yorkylover

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Muddy garden
« on: November 05, 2010, 23:51 »
Hi my hens have a safe pen which has a concrete floor in the winter and in the summer they have bark chippings to dig in,this pen can be closed when Im out.They also have a larger enclosure they spend all day in when Im around,this was grass but is now mud!!!!

I was thinking of putting some slabs down just for the winter,but leaving a small area that they can dig in is this a good idea or not.

They aslo have access to the garden when Im around which is slabbed,but they enjoy picking the bits out between the slabs and digging in the pots.

I only have the 3 hens,Im interested in hearing what other hen owners do.

Thanks
 :)

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8doubles

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Re: Muddy garden
« Reply #1 on: November 06, 2010, 08:52 »
If you dig the muddy ground over it will help drainage and give the hens some good worming. :) I only put slabs where i need to walk for feeding or cleaning, the hens will prefer bare earth with a few logs or pallets in sunny spots where they can sit and preen.

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yorkylover

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Re: Muddy garden
« Reply #2 on: November 06, 2010, 11:32 »
Maybe I should leave it like that then,they will probably hate me for putting slabs down.

Im in Hampshire to. :)

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Fisherman

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Re: Muddy garden
« Reply #3 on: November 07, 2010, 18:52 »
I put play bark chippings down but with all this rain its now like a swamp. I am trying builders sand (concreting sand) in half the run that seems to be keeping in reasonable condition. Half the run is covered but during bad weather the rain water still manages to seep in.

Can't wait for spring and growing grass :)

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helens-hens

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Re: Muddy garden
« Reply #4 on: November 09, 2010, 14:00 »
I put some cheap patio slabs down and top it with easibed or similar (started with woodchips but this was hard to 'poo pick'). Their run is covered so it stays fairly dry. The hens seem quite happy with this - they scratch around through the easibed and I think 1 had a dust bath in it as well! Its also easy to keep clean and being a solid floor you can properly clean it every week or so. With the diabolical weather we are having in Wales at the mo I think it was a good move! Hope this helps.
Helen

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yorkylover

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Re: Muddy garden
« Reply #5 on: November 09, 2010, 17:25 »
Thankyou everyone,today its like a mud bath!!!!!!

I do want to slab it but don't want to upset the hens.It would only be for winter.x :wacko:

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orchardlady

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Re: Muddy garden
« Reply #6 on: November 09, 2010, 17:51 »
I think slabs will be very cold for your girls and will certainly hinder and frustrate their natural scratching habit. The bark can always be turned over and in the Spring dug out and composted.

Also if you put wood chips down from a local tree surgeon make sure it's not come from conifer trees, I believe that wild birds roost in them and leave red mite in the branches. Others may have more experience with this than me.

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jinty1911

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Re: Muddy garden
« Reply #7 on: November 09, 2010, 20:43 »
Most of my garden is slabbed with borders all around and lots of pots that I havent replanted for girls to scratch in. We have a big fence and 8 foot walls so girls are out in the garden all day. It only takes a couple of minutes each day to pick up the poops (hubby even does this without complaining).  Run has pea pebbles and as gaden is on a slope most of the water runs away so dont have a problem with mud. I just wait til it rains and go out with the big garden brush to clean up. It's been fairly easy - so far  :nowink:   

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yorkylover

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Re: Muddy garden
« Reply #8 on: November 09, 2010, 23:40 »
I let my girls out in the garden to and that is slabbed,but we also have pots which they dig in,its just there larger pen that is muddy.

when its raining they stay in there smaller pen which is concrete this is attached to the coop,this has a dust bath which they scratch around in.

Thanks for all the advise.

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themagicaltoad1

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Re: Muddy garden
« Reply #9 on: November 10, 2010, 20:21 »
I swept up all the leaves in my garden (there were a lot), and threw them into the run on the muddy area. I also threw in a handful of corn. They had a great time rooting through the leaves to find the corn. When the leaves start to rot down I'll just dig the area over. The other half of their run is bark chippings.



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