Broccoli as winter greens for chickens

Dying broccoli plants

Around the middle of
January, I decided our broccoli plants weren’t going to make anything
else edible for humans.  The plants had served us well, providing
a big head apiece and then lots of little
for late fall
suppers.  But now, nightly lows were getting cold enough to nip
back any new side shoots before they could develop.

Tossing broccoli

I figured I might as
well give the chickens whatever remained of the plants.  I’ve had
chickens peck up broccoli leaves quite happily in the past, and if
nothing else, the plants will add to the deep bedding in the
coops.  I’d originally planned to cut the broccoli off at soil
level, but that as much more difficult than yanking out the main root
bundle with a twist and pull.  I even hunted down some nice clumps
chickweed for dessert.

Roosting chickens

My timing was good
because it set in to rain soon thereafter, and then to snow.  Our
flock didn’t want to leave the coop, but the garden goodies gave them
something to peck through during their spare time.

Our chicken waterer keeps drinking water clean
even when the coop is congested.

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