Growing Root Vegetables for your Chickens


| 9/9/2012 8:56:54 AM



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Autumn is the season for root vegetables. I love growing things underground because they are the one crop the rabbits don't eat from our garden and they are largely protected from insect damage also. 

It's so exciting to tug gently on the greens and watch as a beautiful vegetable emerges from the warm soil. Of course I plant extra to share with the chickens, now that the summer garden is depleted and their supply of lettuce, tomatoes and cucumbers has dwindled.

Here are some of my observations regarding feeding root vegetables to our flock:
beets
Beets - YES! Beet greens and stalks are a favorite of both our chickens and ducks and both also like the beet itself. They can eat them raw or cooked.

The ducks have an easier time if you chop or grate raw beets, but the chickens will happily peck away at them as long as I slice them in half.

Beets are extremely nutritious and have blood cleansing properties, so they are a good treat choice for your flock. Just don't panic if you see hot pink or teal poop in the run after a beet-fest!
carrots
Carrots - YES! We always have carrots on hand for our horses. We also grow them in our garden. The chickens and ducks love the carrot tops and will also eat carrot peels.



Whole raw carrots should be chopped or grated, especially for the ducks to manage, but cooked carrots are fine for them all to eat in any shape or size.