Permaculture Dreams

by Sarah
(Swamp Donkey Acres, Northern NH, USA)

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My husband and I have a son, four dogs, a cat, 7 free range chickens and a Roo. Our lawn is mostly clover, plantain and dandelion. All of the vegetables need fences or some sort of protection from our naughty, naughty chickens! We don't use any chemicals. Nature balances everything out from year to year and the chickens eat everything else.

Wild blackberries and raspberries and cultivated blueberries creep in around the edge from underneath the maples (that we tap), birch, hemlock, spruce, balsam and beechnut filled trees.

Picture #1.
The edge of the driveway gardens are filled with tomato, dill, cucumber, horehound, chicory and sunflower. Beyond is a perennial bed with bee food (bee food = me food), it does have some chives and violets for eating.

Picture #2.
The edge of the driveway garden facing the house. We do have several apple trees. The one in this picture flowered late so no Macs this year. The stones to the left provide drainage for the rainy season. Although difficult to see with the light, there are strawberries growing in the rocks. Right now even the little collection pond has water. The birds love their in ground pool.

Picture #3.

This is our hugelkultur bed to the left, our beehive, our asparagus bed in the center, an oak tree, more apple trees with horseradish underneath and some Jerusalem artichoke on the right. Sadly the chickens have killed all the corn and beans growing in the beds and all that is left is winter squash.

Picture #4.

Just by the porch steps. Another chicken fail. It did have kale but they ate it. Bad chickens. If they keep it up they will become my edible garden! Still has tomato and eggplant in pots along with a Cimicifuga racemosa (Black bugbane) and some marigold.

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Mar 29, 2014
Chickens in the garden
by: Enter Your Name

It is definitely a balance between pest control and destruction. I love to see my chickens out and about but I have learned to only let them out the last two hours of the day. They are less apt to move from bug patrol to plant eating, and less likely to hide eggs. Still, we keep the back garden netted from the chickens, and wild creatures too.

Jul 19, 2013
Yes,....naughty, naughty chickens!
by: Jamie

I love your herb gardens and can commiserate about the naughty, naughty chickens! My four hens have eaten my anise hyssop to the ground. Errrrgh!
That was my favorite herb!

I love how natural everything looks and that you have incorporated your natural surroundings into your list of edible plants; Chicory, Plantain and Dandelion. Three wonderful herbs!

Thanks for sharing.

Jul 17, 2013
My Wife's Garden
by: Thad

Some very important information that my wife forgot to share: A Swamp Donkey is another name for a Moose :)

Pickling cucumbers do not grow as fast as Dill.


Jul 13, 2013
by: Melanie

Beautiful! I love what ya do. Chickens got good taste buds. lol.

Jul 11, 2013
Always a Surprise
by: Anonymous

I am amused by the free range chickens and the corralled gardens.

Jul 10, 2013
Lookin' good!
by: Anonymous

I really like what you've done. Looks like those chickens of yours are getting coal this year for Christmas, though! ;-)

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