Chicken Garden Buffet Seed Collection
Hi there! Farmer John here (Founder of Sustainable Seed Co.)
I've raised birds all my life and I've learned a great deal over the years. Currently, I have over 200 birds that provide eggs and meat to our homestead. So many times I'm asked what I grow to feed our birds.
Well, I have put together a useful package of seed for all our fine feathered friends. Grow these greens/grains and learn how to feed your own chickens and other fowl. Never rely on GMO corn/soy based poultry feed again.
Never pay $24 a bag for poultry feed when you can grow your own! No matter what happens to oil prices you do not have to be at the mercy of big oil when you grow your own!
Don't forget chicken manure is THE organic fertilizer to have in the garden. Nothing is richer or works faster as far as I'm concerned. So feed your poultry well and you will literally get great returns!!
Reids Yellow Dent Corn Perfect for cracked or whole corn. An excellent storage corn that produces loads of high protein kernels. The staple of any chicken scratch recipe.
Grain Sorghum Otherwise known as Milo, this is the other staple of a good scratch recipe. Drought tolerant, high in nutrition, milo is a feed for humans and animals alike in all parts of the country. Essential for any and all homesteaders. We harvest the stalks before the wild birds can get to it and hang them in the barn. When we need it, we throw the seedhead and stalk into the chickens. No need to thresh. It doesn't get much easier.
Swiss Chard A fast growing, huge chard perfect for poultry greens, which are absolutely vital to good growth, egg production, chick development and health. Cut and come again, can survive mild winters.
Field Pumpkin Most farms have forgotten to use pumpkins for their poultry. They are perfect because of the abundant harvest of huge, nutrient-rich flesh that stores easily through the winter when it is hard to find a good feed. Pumpkin will give you the deepest, most delicious orange/yellow egg yolks. My egg customers always rave about my eggs when I'm feeding pumpkin.
Millet The staple in any bird feed. Grows fast and produces huge sprays of heads loaded with seeds your birds will gobble up. Easily cut and hung up in the garage for later use. We tie these sprays of millet together, hang in the barn and throw the entire spray to the chickens when we need it. No need to thresh, and the chickens love it.
Peas Browsing forage is a staple for all Turkeys and makes up a large part of their diet. They relish peas, as will the chickens and ducks. Peas will provide a quick, fast forage for your birds on the ground or harvest for easy dry storage.
Oats Oats are an important source of energy when fall weather sets in. We start using more oats in our mix as soon as the cool weather settles in and the birds need the extra carbohydrates to keep warm. Oats are easy to grow and the straw left over can also be used in nesting boxes. Or if you don't want to thresh the oats (which is easy) throw the whole thing to the birds or let them forage.
Flax You've heard all the good news about how heart-healthy Omega 3 is, but find it hard to swallow flax every morning? Feed it to your chickens! We use flax to produce the most nutrient-dense omega 3 eggs that our customers go crazy for!
Marigold These flowers have long been used to keep pest out of your garden. They can do the same in your garden and thrown in the coop can deter mites. However, the major use in the commercial chicken industry is using them to turn eggs a golden yellow color. Yelp, feed them to the hens for rich orange yolks!
Sunflower seed has been used in bird seed mixes for a long time. High in oils and fatty acids. Potent source of magnesium. Contains selenium which is a powerful antioxidant. Easy to grow, beautiful and attracts pollinators to your garden, and when dried you just cut the head and throw the whole thing to your chickens!
Tobacco Historically, many homesteaders would soak tobacco leaves in water and even boil the mixture down. They would take this and spray/paint it in the coops to kill mites, lice and all manner of bugs. Care must be taken not to get it on your skin, so wearing gloves is always a good idea. Homesteaders would also dry the leaves, then grind them into a powder and dust poultry during mite season. They also put it in the next boxes for the same reason. (We use a coffee bean grinder dedicated to this purpose. It works really well at turning the leaves into a powder and was 50 cents from a garage sale.) Again, wearing a face mask when dusting your chickens is a must. Obviously, you do not want to get it in the chickens' eyes or mouths no matter what you use.
This will support up to 10 chickens, assuming you let them free-range for part of the year -
all this on less than 6,000 square feet of land - only a 7th of an acre!
You get everything you need to get started for less than the cost of 2 bags of chicken feed!
(Yep, we pay $23.95 a bag here in California for the organic chicken feed!)
Add a Happy Hen nest box to your Chicken Garden Buffet Package and save $2! Plus it comes with its own nesting material to get you started. Or just buy it here by itself.
Add any of the following books to your package
***Yes, tobacco is still carcinogenic so you must use care with it or any other pesticide, but I still believe it is a better alternative to the malathion often used on poultry. It is also something you can grow instead of being reliant on a chemical company.
***Some of the above varieties of seed may be substituted, but are in the same family. For example, if we are out of Fordhook chard we may substitute Lucullus Chard.
Looking forward to warmer weather in OK to plant
I ordered this last year to use this spring. You get a ton of seed for the price. I planted the dent corn and it is a vigorous grower. Too early to tell on yield but we have had an up and down spring. Cold night and soggy weather followed by drought. So far these are rolling with it while other crops have given up. Haven't planted most of the varieties yet. The tobacco didn't germinate but again might be the cold nights. I will update once I get more progress