what to do with chicken poo??

Discussion in 'Gardening & Plant Propagation' started by hayseed882, Apr 14, 2005.

  1. hayseed882

    hayseed882 Active Member

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    michigan
    Spring is finally here and I just got done with cleaning out the chicken coop (about a pickup load) from this past winter . My question is , am I better off tilling the goodies in the garden now, or saving it for mulch around the plants and between the rows after I get my garden in ? Its mid April now and most of my garden wont be put in till mid May or so. The goodies that I cleaned out of the coop is mostly straw , scredded paper and of course poop. Also , my garden is about 50 x 55 ft, so either way I do it there is only going to be a thin layer after I spead it out . What do you's think???
     
  2. Ravenlost

    Ravenlost Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Chicken poo is pretty strong. I would add it to compost and let it age, then plow it into next year's garden.
     

  3. Paula

    Paula Well-Known Member

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    We don't bother with composting - conventional composting that is. I guess what we do is considered sheet composting. Really we just mulch the garden with barn bedding, old hay, kitchen scraps. It's great, no weeding, fertilizing or tilling. The soil is soft and rich, we just pull the mulch back and plant. There are earthworms galore. Which is really amazing when you consider that 5 yrs ago the current garden spot was brick-hard red dirt you couldn't get a shovel in even standing on it and jumping!
    Last year we planted some stuff in a new area that had never been mulched. DH mulched the plants with manure and shavings from the chicken house (fresh) then mulched over that with hay. I was worried it would burn the plants but they did great. Maybe it's because the stuff laid on top of the soil instead of being mixed in to burn the roots? I don't know, but it worked fine, and he planted lots of different stuff that way.
     
  4. Nax

    Nax Well-Known Member

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    Mar 26, 2005
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    NW Michigan
    Chicken manure is pretty hot. To play it safe, I'd let it sit this summer then spread it in the fall after the garden is done--especially if you deep bedded and you got a winter's worth of droppings which makes it pretty concentrated.
     
  5. Lilandra

    Lilandra talk little, listen much

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    We always clean the coup out early April, late March and till it straight into the garden. Make sure you till it deep and if you still see straw on the top, go back and till it again next weekend. You will be speeding up the breakdown of the nitrogen that can burn young seedlings. Once the smell is gone from it, it is ok to plant. I would be carefull where you plant carrots,radishes,lettuce or other root crops - actually don't spread manure over that area. The manure will still be pressent and can contaminate your produce. We use it fresh in our corn and pumpkin patch with great success.