I had just finished putting the wheels on one of my first Garden Arks this past July, and as I rolled it out of the garage to snap a few pictures to add into the new plan, a neighbor happened to be strolling by with his baby and dog. He stopped to introduce himself, and we started talking coops (everyone does that, right?). Although this was the first time we’d met, it turns out Tony had been considering The Garden Coop design online. . .
Fast forward a couple of weeks. I started selling plans for The Garden Ark, and when my first sale came in, I was thrilled. I even thought about framing the PayPal receipt the way brick-and-mortar shops display their first dollar—alas, another tradition made less charming by e-commerce.
Then, just a couple weeks ago, I was surprised to get an email from Tony with photos of his finished coop. Turns out he was that first customer! He explained that he’d bought the plans for The Garden Ark, but wanted to bring in certain elements he’d seen on The Garden Coop.
The results are pretty cool. Tony’s coop has doors to the run on two sides, a trap-door ladder, and vinyl flooring in the henhouse. He used tongue-and-groove cedar for the siding and bamboo from his garden for the ladder rungs. And he used a dark-green coated hardware cloth on the sides that does a lot to improve visibility into the coop.
I walked over to Tony’s house last week, and he showed me his coop up close. We talked about his plans to make it a key part of his vegetable garden, setting it over the garden beds that he’s putting to rest for the season. It’s heavier than The Garden Ark, so it’s not the kind of coop you’d move frequently. But it’s still mobile, and that was important to him. He can move it seasonally or take it with him if his family ever happens to move.
Have you built The Garden Coop or The Garden Ark and made it your own? Send us your photos and a description, or leave a comment here.