Lately, I have been doing a bit of research on the use of certain Herbs & flowers in the chicken coop. Wether it be a little herb patch in the chicken run or a few scattered herbs in the nesting boxes or scattered out with their feed, there are many different ways that Herbs can be included in your chickens daily life to improve their overall health and wellbeing.

Planting a Herb garden for Chickens is a good way to provide a natural source of healthy plant foods that they can help themselves to whenever they need to. Chickens always seem to know just how much they need of each certain plant and you will feel a lot better knowing you are providing them with a healthy natural choice of feed too.

Quoted from the Grit.com website:
"Fresh or dried herbs in your nesting boxes not only work as insecticides, but also have anti-bacterial properties, and can act as natural wormers, anti-parasitics, insecticides, rodent control, stress relievers and laying stimulants.  They will help a laying hen feel safe and relaxed while she is sitting, and calm a broody hen, as well as repel rodents, flies and other parasites. Plus they look so pretty!
They will also benefit newly hatched chicks. Research has shown that wild birds will line their nests with fresh herbs and flowers, especially those that contain essential oils. The newly hatched baby birds benefit by rubbing against these herbs in the first few days of life.  Same applies to baby chicks. The chicks will also eat some of the herbs, thereby garnering even more health benefits from them.

Here is a partial list of common herbs and flowers and their beneficial  properties:
Basil - antibacterial, mucus membrane health
Catnip - sedative, insecticide
Cilantro - antioxidant, fungicide, builds strong bones, high in Vitamin A for vision and Vitamin K for blood clotting
Dill - antioxidant, relaxant, respiratory health
Fennel -laying stimulant
Garlic - laying stimulant
Lavender - stress reliever, increases blood circulation, highly aromatic, insecticide
Lemon Balm - stress reliever, antibacterial, highly aromatic, rodent repellent
Marigold - laying stimulant
Marjoram - lay stimulant
Mint (all kinds) - insecticide and rodent repellent
Nasturtium - laying stimulant, antiseptic, antibiotic, insecticide, wormer
Oregano - combats coccidia, salmonella, infectious bronchitis, avian flu, blackhead and e-coli
Parsley - high in vitamins, aids in blood vessel development, laying stimulant
Peppermint - anti-parasitic, insecticide
Pineapple Sage - aids nervous system, highly aromatic
Rose Petals - highly aromatic, high in Vitamin C
Rosemary - pain relief, respiratory health, insecticide
Sage -  antioxidant, anti-parasitic
Spearmint - antiseptic, insecticide, stimulates nerve, brain and blood functions
Tarragon - antioxidant
Thyme -  respiratory health, antibacterial, antioxidant, anti-parasitic

Read more: http://www.grit.com/fresh-eggs-daily/nesting-box-herbs-chicken-aromatherapy.aspx#ixzz2ROBmuHGB"

I know I am looking forward to spring time when I can plant a specially planned Herb
garden that will benefit everyone, including the chickens. If you don't have the room to create a Herb garden, try planting a few different Herbs in pots, planters or hanging baskets... your chooks will love you for it.
 





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