DIY chicken coop sign

Make It Your Own: Rob and Tansy’s Veggie Garden and Chicken Coop, Bendigo, Victoria (Australia)

Rob and Tansy's Australian Garden Coop chicken coop from metric instructions
Spring is right around the corner. . . in Australia, anyway, where the season starts the first of September. In honor of that, I’m featuring the gorgeous garden and coop of Rob and Tansy K. of Bendigo, Victoria. They used the metric version of our plans to build The Garden Coop to house their chooks, modifying the size somewhat to fit atop an existing brick raised garden bed and to incorporate found and recycled materials. The result is not only a beautiful backyard chicken coop, but one with character and history right from the start. Read on for more, including a look at a regional magazine feature that showcased their creation. The rest of the post comes directly from Rob. . . . Read More

Drawstring to retract chicken ramp.

7 tips for building a garden-friendly chicken coop

In the urban or suburban garden, limited space, pests, wary neighbors, and the like can make the idea of keeping chickens seem like more hassle than it’s worth. But by designing and building the right kind of coop, you can quickly get past these hurdles and add a whole new dimension to your garden.

Here are seven tips to put your coop project on the right path. . . .

1. Let your chicken coop breathe.

Window on the front of Dan's Austin chicken coop.

A well-ventilated chicken coop helps keep your hens from suffering and your neighbors from complaining. Of course, you do need to stay ahead of any odors, making sure you balance out their poop with plenty of high-carbon bedding like straw, wood shavings, leaves, or shredded paper. We use the deep-litter method and continue to add straw as the chickens add droppings. This mixture begins to compost in place, and the volume builds only slowly. From time to time we move it all to a compost bin to finish doing its thing, then incorporate the rich fertilizer into the garden.

NOTE: The pictures in this post feature coops built by us and by customers of our chicken coop plans. Click on them to learn more about each DIY chicken coop build.
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How to build raised garden beds to fit The Garden Ark mobile chicken tractor

How to build a chicken coop that fits a raised garden bed.

One of the nice things about The Garden Ark mobile chicken coop is that you can move it around your yard or garden to focus your chickens’ grazing activity where you want it — just roll it across your lawn or place it atop your vegetable rows.

But what if you prefer to garden in raised beds? How can you incorporate The Garden Ark into your garden rotation so that your hens can graze, till, and help fertilize your garden before or after harvest?

In this tutorial, I show you how to build a raised vegetable bed that fits The Garden Ark design perfectly.  Read More

NEW: Quick Kits for The Garden Coop and The Garden Ark chicken coops

They’re here! Our new chicken coop hardware Quick Kits for The Garden Coop and The Garden Ark let you build your backyard chicken coop even easier and faster.

In one box you get all the screws, staples, nuts, bolts, washers, nails, roofing screws, latches, hinges, braces, and more that you need to build your coop. All that’s left for you to shop for are the bulky items: wood, roofing, hardware cloth, pier blocks (Garden Coop), and stain/paint. Read More

Make It Your Own: Christine and Andrew’s Garden Coop, Nelson, New Zealand

Christine and Andrew used our metric chicken coop plans to build this stunning Garden Coop in New Zealand.

New Zealand Chicken Coop built from The Garden Coop metric plans

We used orange Perspex, mainly because it looks cool, but also to see if it will encourage the hens to lay throughout the winter because it bathes them in a warm orange light (or drives them nuts. . . time will tell!). We changed the roof to solid Colorsteel because the light here is pretty harsh, and it gets hot in summer.

We have 6 hens: 3 Chinese Silkies, 1 Rhode Island Red, 1 Silver Spangled Hamburg, and a Plymouth Rock. They have access to free range, but if we are away for the weekend they have plenty of space to stay secure. Next will be to attach a little water tank which will give them free water!

Like what Andrew and Christine have done? Leave a comment, and let us know where in the world you’re keeping backyard chickens.