In this fifteenth episode of the Krewe of Coops virtual coop tour, we visit ten fantastic coops built using The Garden Loft large walk-in chicken coop plans.
Coop #1: Joe and Meghan’s Garden Loft Walk-In Chicken Coop, Nashville, Tennessee
Joe and family built a coop that is absolutely beautiful, down to every last detail. I love the white paint, black hardware, sconce, and custom ornamental sign on the front. You can read their detailed review of The Garden Loft chicken coop design (with more pics) on Meghan’s website.
It was a great project for our family to dive into together in the midst of life being disrupted by the pandemic. Truthfully, I’ve been a little sad that the building phase has come to a close.
Coop #2 : John’s Southern California Garden Loft
John used a metal roof and added extra shade on the front wall to keep his flock cooler through the SoCal summer.
Lot of work, but all done! Will add some solar lights and automatic watering accessories, but I declared it complete and moved the girls in. Thanks for the plans!
Coop #3: Eric’s Garden Loft Chicken Coop, Snohomish, Washington
Eric built The Garden Loft for his flock of eleven and added some seasonal lighting to keep them laying on a schedule. It’s also really pretty at twilight.
Coop #4: Elizabeth’s Double Loft Chicken Coop, Shirley, Massachusetts
Elizabeth was one of the first chicken keepers to build a coop using The Garden Loft plans. As her flock expanded, so did her coop! She used the same design, modified slightly, to double the size of their enclosed run.
If you want to try something similar, Elizabeth sent these notes. . .
This time I screwed all the hardware cloth in with 1-1/4 inch screws and washers because 1) I didn’t want to hammer in poultry staples ever again or 2) buy a powered narrow-crown stapler. It was easy to do. I brought over the hardware cloth roll, pulled out enough, screwed in the top, measured out what I needed, and cut in place. It also can be modified easily if I decide to add a door (for throwing in new sand or whatever).
I also added four ceiling span boards front to back, and just ran the hardware cloth front to back, instead of making the small ceiling panels. The hardware cloth was also installed in place and easy.
In the picture you can see there’s about six inches extra between the front and back, because I couldn’t abut the foundation blocks, due to the original hardware cloth which is buried two feet deep and not worth moving.
Other modifications coming up: Suntuf ridge cap, adding a small enclosure/shelter at the back end of the roosting area, adding more roosting area high up (possibly mobile), and adding storage on the exterior back wall.
I love your plans! 🙂
Coop #5: Marnie’s Backyard Chicken Coop and Run with Storage, Indianapolis, Indiana
Marnie added some insulation and created a separate storage area inside the henhouse.
I picked this plan because everything is self contained, and the chickens are safe to come and go from coop to run as they please. I’m not one to get up at 5 a.m. every morning to let them out, so this was a must. We have foxes, raccoons, and hawks where I live, so I also feel confident it will keep them safe.
I modified it somewhat to include storage in a third of the coop, and as you can see, I added some entertainment logs and branches, a dust bath area, and their feeding and watering areas. It was easy to insulate through the winter as well. My five Brahma chickens made it through the winter fine and very healthy. Thank you again!
Coop #6: Rachel’s Backyard Chicken Coop Built with The Garden Loft Plans, Salt Lake City, Utah
Rachel used a darker roof to provide more shade, then added a couple of windows to bring light into the henhouse.
With a little bit of help on occasion, I was able to put this coop together by myself. I wanted a nice looking building that was easy on the back to clean while providing a good and safe place for my chickens.
It gets quite hot here in the summer, so I used dark roof panels (the dark grey polycarbonate Suntop). But since my coop faces west, I added some small Plexiglas windows in the back wall of the hen house to take advantage of the morning sun.
I was able to use the removed rabbet edge from the paneling as molding and already had some clear silicone on hand, so the addition was only $10 for the glass. My chickens seem to like looking out the window and sitting in the sunlight. I also used two-by-fours with a shallow cut for the rafters as the plans were six inches too tall for my city regulations.
I am excited about having the chickens help with composting for the garden beds. I think I will add a gutter and rain barrel to the back of the coop for the garden. Such a good design! We have some rats in the area that keep trying to dig under it but to no avail. It’s nice to not have to worry about it. 🙂
Coop #7: Doug and Claudia’s Garden Loft, Vinalhaven, Maine
What an amazing setting Doug and Claudia chose for their coop! It looks so good in the dappled light of the trees.
After buying the plan and hardware kit, I have to admit to enjoying the construction of a quality coop for our chickens. We paid close attention to the instructions, and being an “Ok” carpenter, it turned out better than my expectations.
Coop #8: Andy’s Garden Loft Large Walk-In Chicken Coop, Swarthmore, Pennsylvania
Andy used two-by-threes to frame his Garden Loft instead of two-by-twos as called for in the plans. A few adjustments, and he made it work just fine.
He also moved the people door to the front. Note how much the black-coated hardware cloth improves visibility into the coop. It’s like there’s nothing there.
Thanks for all your help. It’s finally done, although there are a few minor trim items that I’ll need to complete over time. The chicks are happy, and the coop gets lots of compliments. The plans were fantastic.
Coop #9: Marilyn and Jason’s Garden Loft for Backyard Chickens, Crestview, Florida
Here’s another fine example of a chicken coop featuring black hardware against white painted wood. Such a classic look!
We ended up using natural roosting bars from trees in our property and poured resin on the roosting floors with great results. Our hens also laid their first eggs in the nest boxes. Love having it in our yard.
Coop #10: Lynda and Darrell’s Chicken Coop from The Garden Loft Plans, Stone Mountain, Georgia
Lynda and her husband built and decorated this delightful Garden Loft for their new flock. Notice the block foundation they created so they could build it on a slope.
We are absolutely thrilled with the results! My husband and I are pretty handy, but have never tackled a project of this scale. Your plans and instructions are incredibly easy to follow and the design is just amazing — thank you!
Thanks to everyone featured here for sharing your coop pictures, ideas, and notes about your experience building with The Garden Loft large walk-in chicken coop plans. Like what they’ve done? Let them know in the comments below.
5 thoughts on “Virtual Chicken Coop Tour No. 15: Ten Backyard Coops Built with The Garden Loft Plans”
2x4s are not the best for roosts. Should be a branch or something their feet can grip around. Also used carpet under the edges a foot or more of the coop will keep critters from digging in and allow you to wet down and throw on some forage seed. Cheap, quick, not so heavy as rock!
Thanks for the comment, Twila. Great tip about the carpet. As for roosts, I’ve had success using two-by-fours, but you’re right, if they’re narrow side up, it’s best to round the corners so their feet/toes can wrap around the top of the roost more naturally. In the winter, you can install a 2×4 roost wide side up — this lets your hens perch flat-footed so they can sit on their toes to prevent frostbite.
I love all these pictures of the coop design. We are planning on buying the plans and building soon. My question is, with the open ventilation in the roof do the chickens get cold in the winter?
Grace, that’s a good question. Chickens need lots of ventilation, especially in winter. But there are some simple steps you can take with our coop designs to prepare them for the season. Check out our four-part series on winter chicken/coop care for more details.
Thanks for all the lovely coop pix! I really enjoyed looking at them.
I noticed one of my girls picked a hole in her egg today. I was very sad to see that. Any suggestions or thoughts?