BRENTWOOD, Tenn., April 2, 2014 (Korea Bizwire) - Gardeners in search of more sustainable ways to grow tastier vegetables and more vibrant flowers are finding inspiration from their country cousins.
For decades, chickens have played an important role on farms, providing families a sustainable source of delicious food, organic fertilizer and natural pest control.
The undeniable benefits of raising poultry are pushing the backyard chicken movement into communities that were previously off limits, and gardeners looking to live a more self-reliant lifestyle have been early adopters.
Chicken manure — a natural, nitrogen-rich fertilizer — is the perfect compost companion with leaves and yard waste.
Shannon Campbell, of Ashland City, Tenn., who has raised backyard chickens for seven years, says by recycling the family’s food waste, her birds create the secret ingredient for any garden.
“We compost our chicken manure, all of our used straw and also any table scraps the kids don’t eat. We crush our eggshells and put that in the compost as well for added calcium,” Campbell said. “The chickens will even scratch through the compost pile and turn it over, and then I cover it back up.”
Marc Johnson, vice president of merchandise at Tractor Supply Company, which is currently hosting Chick Days nationwide to introduce families to backyard chickens, says hens provide excellent support for sustainable gardens.
“Chickens naturally recycle food waste and they provide invaluable fertilizer for gardens,” Johnson said. “What’s more, there’s not a better organic source of pest control than a backyard chicken. They naturally eat bugs, ticks, beetles and other backyard pests.”
For avid gardeners, Campbell says, a flock of chickens is a great investment. Her family has begun saving money by reducing soil and fertilizer costs.
“The other great thing about having birds is that you get really good, rich soil out of it,” Campbell said. “Anybody that does a lot of gardening or has to go and buy soil knows how expensive it is – so this stuff is like gold really.”
Learn more about raising chickens to benefit your garden at TractorSupply.com/Chicks.
About Tractor Supply Company
At December 28, 2013, Tractor Supply Company operated 1,276 stores in 48 states. The company’s stores are focused on supplying the lifestyle needs of recreational farmers and ranchers. The company also serves the maintenance needs of those who enjoy the rural lifestyle, as well as tradesmen and small businesses. Stores are located in towns outlying major metropolitan markets and in rural communities. The company offers the following comprehensive selection of merchandise: equine, pet and small animal products, including items necessary for their health, care, growth and containment; hardware, truck, towing and tool products; seasonal products, including lawn and garden items, power equipment, gifts and toys; maintenance products for agricultural and rural use; and work/recreational clothing and footwear.
Source: Tractor Supply Company (via Business Wire)