Abby and John used The Garden Coop walk-in chicken coop plans to build this gorgeous coop for their California backyard. It’s a wonderful example of how something as functional as a chicken coop, when done right, can add beauty to an already beautiful outdoor garden space.
I’ve actually been meaning to post this coop profile for some time, so without further delay. . . here are Abby and John’s photos and notes on how they built a Garden Coop and made it their own. Enjoy!
Thanks for putting together such great plans. We made a few adaptations:
- We added a window on the front so the chickens can keep an eye on us from inside the hen house. This is basically the same cutout that is called for in the plans for the original egg door. Since we were going to build external nesting boxes, we just flipped that internal wall upside down so that the hole was up higher and more at window height.
- We rotated where the ramp came out of the henhouse so that there would be more room and shade for the chickens under the hen house. This worked well except that we got a lot of pine shavings from inside the hen house falling through the floor opening for the ramp and landing in the food/water. Our solution was to hang a shield that came with an old birdfeeder over the water – so nothing could fall in.
- For the upper roll of hardware cloth we found that hanging it by bungee cords as we worked our way around the coop made the job SO much easier (see picture).
- We used The Garden Coop plans for the external nesting boxes.
- We painted and stained everything before we built the coop (except the redwood siding). We were putting a lot of effort into it and wanted it to stay in good shape. We were concerned if we raced through the plans and built the coop, got the chickens in, it was unlikely we would really do all the work to paint and seal it.
It was a lot of work for us novice carpenters — but totally worth it. It is a beautiful and functional addition to our backyard. We are happy and the chickens are happy (and safe).
—Abby and John, Lafayette, California
More photos of their chicken coop. . .
UPDATE: Their new Garden Ark chicken tractor
And introducing the newest member of John and Abby’s flock. . . The Garden Ark mobile chicken coop. Don’t these two coops look great together?
A big thanks to Abby and John for sharing their pictures and tips. Like what they’ve done here? Any tips of your own to share? Let us know with a comment below!