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How To Keep Chickens Out Of Your Garden: Simple & Effective Tips

how to keep chickens out of garden

Are you facing a feathery dilemma with your garden-loving chickens? How to keep chickens out of your garden is a question many gardeners and chicken owners wrestle with. Your garden is your pride and joy, a place where your plants should flourish without becoming an all-you-can-eat buffet for your backyard chickens. In this guide, we’re diving into some friendly and effective strategies to keep your leafy greens safe from your feathered friends. Whether you’re a seasoned gardener or a newbie chicken keeper, these tips are designed to bring harmony to your backyard oasis.

Why do chickens love gardens?

First, it’s important to know why chickens are attracted to gardens. Chickens love gardens because they find bugs, seeds, and fresh greens there. They also like to scratch the dirt and take dust baths. Understanding this can help you create a better plan to keep them out.

Create a chicken-friendly zone

Make a special area in your yard just for your chickens. This area should have all the things chickens love – like a dust bath area, some tasty chicken food, and a place to peck and scratch. If they have their fun place, they might not want to go into the garden as much.

Use chicken fences

A simple fence can do wonders. You can use chicken wire or a small fence around your garden. Make sure it’s tall enough – at least 4 feet – because some chickens can fly over shorter fences. If your chickens are real escape artists, you might need a taller fence.

Plant chicken-repellent plants

Did you know that some plants can keep chickens away? Plants like lavender, rosemary, and marigolds don’t taste good to chickens. Planting these around your garden can help keep the chickens out.

Make a scarecrow

A scarecrow can be a fun and effective way to keep chickens away. You can make one with old clothes and straw. Chickens might be scared of it at first, but remember, they can get used to it, so you might need to move it around sometimes.

Use garden netting

Garden netting can be put over the plants to protect them. This way, even if chickens get into your garden, they won’t be able to eat or scratch the plants.

Give chickens their garden

You can make a small garden just for your chickens. Plant things they like to eat, like certain greens and herbs. This can keep them busy and away from your main garden.

Regularly check and mend fences

If you already have a fence, make sure to check it regularly. Chickens might find small gaps or holes to sneak through. Fixing these gaps can keep your garden safe.

Train your chickens

Believe it or not, you can train chickens. Use treats to teach them to stay away from the garden. This might take some time and patience, but it can work!

Use motion-activated sprinklers

Motion-activated sprinklers can scare chickens away when they come near your garden. The sudden burst of water is harmless but effective.

Enhance your garden: Top tips

Gardening can be a delightful and rewarding hobby, but sometimes it might feel challenging to get it just right. Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned green thumb, there are always ways to improve your garden. Here are some tips to help your garden thrive:

Start with good soil:

The foundation of a great garden is good soil. Invest in quality soil rich in organic matter. Consider getting your soil tested to understand its nutrient content and pH level, and then amend it accordingly.

Choose the right plants for your environment:

Not all plants thrive in the same conditions. Select plants that are suitable for your climate, soil type and the amount of sunlight your garden receives. Local plants are often a good choice as they are adapted to the local environment.

Water wisely:

Over-watering can be just as harmful as under-watering. Learn the water needs of your plants and water them accordingly. Early morning is usually the best time to water, as it gives the plants time to absorb the water before the heat of the day.

Mulch to retain moisture:

Mulching helps to retain soil moisture, suppress weeds, and improve soil quality. Organic mulches like straw, wood chips, or leaf litter can add nutrients back into the soil as they decompose.

Regular pruning:

Pruning encourages healthy growth and flowering. Remove dead or diseased branches, and thin out areas that are overcrowded to improve air circulation, which helps to reduce the risk of disease.

Rotate crops and diversify:

If you’re growing vegetables, rotate your crops each year to prevent soil depletion and reduce the build-up of pests and diseases. Planting a variety of species also promotes a healthy, balanced ecosystem.

Use natural pest control:

Chemical pesticides can harm beneficial insects and the environment. Opt for natural pest control methods like encouraging beneficial insects, using insecticidal soaps, or employing barriers and traps.

Fertilize thoughtfully:

Plants need nutrients to thrive. Use compost and organic fertilizers to provide nutrients. Be cautious with chemical fertilizers, as overuse can damage plants and the environment.

Be patient and observant:

Gardens take time to grow and flourish. Be patient and keep a close eye on your plants. Observing changes and responding accordingly can help you become a more successful gardener.

Enjoy the process:

Remember, gardening is not just about the result but also about the process of growing. Take time to enjoy being outdoors and working with nature.

By following these tips, you’ll be well on your way to creating a beautiful and productive garden. Happy gardening!

Repel chickens naturally with homemade solutions

Creating a homemade chicken repellent is a practical and safe way to keep chickens away from certain areas, like your garden, without causing them harm. Here are some effective and easy-to-make repellent ideas:

  • Citrus spray: Chickens generally dislike the smell of citrus. You can make a citrus spray by boiling lemon or orange peels in water. Let the mixture cool, strain it, and put it into a spray bottle. Spray this around the perimeter of the area you want to protect.
  • Spicy pepper mix: Capsaicin, found in spicy peppers, is a good deterrent. Blend hot peppers with water and a little vinegar, then strain the mixture. Spray this around the garden. Be cautious when handling hot peppers and the mixture, as it can irritate your skin and eyes.
  • Garlic spray: Garlic’s strong odor can repel chickens. Crush several garlic cloves, mix them with water, and let the mixture sit for a day or two. Strain and use it as a spray around your garden.
  • Vinegar solution: A solution of vinegar and water can also help keep chickens away. However, be careful with this, as vinegar can harm some plants.
  • Herbal repellent: Chickens are often repelled by strong scents like lavender, rosemary, and mint. Planting these herbs around your garden can act as a natural deterrent.
  • Coffee grounds: Spread used coffee grounds around areas you want to protect. The smell is not favored by chickens, and it’s also good for your soil.

Remember, while these repellents can be effective, they may need to be reapplied after rain or watering. Also, it’s important to ensure that any repellent used is safe for the plants in your garden and for the chickens. Additionally, combining these repellents with other methods, like fencing or garden netting, can provide more comprehensive protection for your garden.


What smells do chickens hate?

Chickens generally dislike strong odors such as citrus scents, garlic, and spicy peppers like cayenne. Herbs with potent aromas like lavender, rosemary, and mint are also not favored by chickens.

What is the best repellent for chickens?

The best repellent for chickens often involves a combination of strong smells and physical barriers. Citrus sprays, garlic solutions, and spicy pepper mixes can effectively deter chickens. Additionally, using fencing or garden netting provides a physical barrier that helps keep chickens out.

What keeps chickens out of a yard?

To keep chickens out of a yard, use a mix of repellents like citrus or garlic spray and physical barriers such as chicken wire fencing or garden netting. Planting chicken-repellent plants around the yard’s perimeter can also be helpful. Regular maintenance, like checking and repairing fences, is crucial to ensure the yard remains chicken-free.


In conclusion, keeping chickens out of your garden doesn’t have to be a hassle. With the right strategies and a bit of patience, you can maintain a beautiful, thriving garden while coexisting peacefully with your feathered friends. Remember, the key to success lies in understanding chicken behavior and using safe, humane methods like homemade repellents and physical barriers. Whether you’re a seasoned gardener or just starting, these tips for how to keep chickens out of your garden can help ensure that both your plants and your chickens stay happy and healthy. Happy gardening!