Pop door to chicken coop.

Make It Your Own: Rob and Family’s California Chicken Coop + Goats

Chickens and goats together in a California backyard

Rob S. and his family in Davis, California, used The Garden Coop walk-in chicken coop plans to build a more spacious coop for their flock of eight backyard chickens when they moved from the city to the outskirts. But chickens aren’t the only creatures in his family’s yard. “We have a mule, a donkey, and two sheep in the front pasture,” Rob says. And out back with the chickens. . . two Nigerian dwarf goats! Read on to see how they all get along. The rest of the story 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.
Read More

Chicken coop with cedar siding and shortened run

Make It Your Own: Michael’s Seattle Backyard Chicken Coop with Cedar Siding and Windows

Chicken coop with cedar siding and shortened run

Michael and family in Seattle built a modified version of the The Garden Coop walk-in chicken coop to fit their backyard and needs. I particularly like the woodwork on this coop, like the tapers he cut into the ends of the purlins, the alternating corners on the siding, and the added depth and angle on the rafter tails. Michael sent us some great notes and several photos of their handiwork. Here they are:  Read More