Mini’Stead Check: The Flock Yard

Here’s to a new and better year for the flock yard. I hope.

The fact is, it’s hard to keep a chicken run looking luscious and pretty. Sunset magazine make it look like a snap, but I’ve really never seen a Real Farm with anything so nice. Whatever the magazines and fun books show you—takes a lot of work, and control of your birds. Chickens are natural destroyers.

So each year I try, and then I get a little lackadaisical and then BOOM everything is dead. So, this year I am trying again and hoping that the boy and his devotion to the flock will improve my chances.


Here is my little sketch for the flock yard.

Step one: Lightly till the ground, planting grass/pasture blend.

Step two: Building grazing frames—low wooden frames, covered in wire mesh, to protect baby grass. I discovered this idea last year and was floored, how had I never thought of that? Or come across it? Either way, this year we did it. Boom.

Step three: Plant sunflowers and amaranth everywhere. All along the fence line, along the front of the coop. These plants are tall and beautiful and provide bird feed for little birds and big birds alike.

Step four: Keep the birds inside the yard! (This one is a continuing effort.)

So far the grass and grazing frames are working out beautifully. Sunflower and amaranth seeds went in the ground over the weekend, and I have little temporary shields to protect the space while they grow.

We only have two ladies that regularly escape, and thankfully they’ve stayed out of the garden. This coming week I’ll get ready to get dirty and trim their wings.

I am so excited to see this space when it’s in full (bloom) effect.


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