ANZ's Farms

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

The Garden Zone Project

The new garden area is in! Scott has been working hard the past several days building it. Plans began to come to fruition last Wednesday when he got 6 30-ft telephone poles from the Progress Energy place next to the Mudcats stadium in Zebulon. A friend with a big truck and trailer took him, and helped load and unload. Thanks, Mike!

After cutting and piecing the poles together to create a 60'x30' area, he made posts with the left overs. Next, he installed the perimeter fence using 3-ft welded wire, but it looks taller since he stapled it to the top of the poles. Then he built gates for both sides so that I can enter easily from the greenhouse or goat yard. The last step was to place wildlife netting over the top, strips sewn together and to the fence with fishing line. This will serve to keep the chickens in and chicken hawks out while they scratch up the ground for us.

An important part of the overall plan is the tunnel from the chicken coop to the new garden area. We want the chickens to get in and scratch up the ground for us. An added benefit will be the sun they can get this winter (their coop and chicken run is in the shade, which is good for summer, but not for winter). We decided to build a tunnel from the existing coop to the garden area instead of a whole new coop to keep stress/change at a minimum for the birds. They have loved eating the worms and tasty treats along the tunnel so far, as pictured here. One girl keeps escaping ... we can't find where she gets out, but we find her scratching around in the back yard several times a day. A Houdini chicken!

As I expect the birds to spend alot of time in the garden area, I have placed a nesting box there for them. It's a milk crate on a cinder block so it is off the ground several inches, covered with an old sheet and piece of plywood to give them a secure feeling and protection from the elements. There is also a bit of sheet over that corner to give them some shade. This picture shows the "door" from the tunnel into the garden area ... and some of the girls already checking things out!

Here is a picture of the completed project. Completed up to this point, that is. We won't add the truckloads of dirt until late winter and seedlings until spring.

Total cost has been about $180 - $100 for the 2 rolls of 3x100 ft wire fence, $10 per gate for materials to make them (instead of buying them pre-made for $35 each) and $60 for the 3 rolls of 7x100 ft netting. The poles were free, a big savings over the 2x8's we originally planned.


  1. Love your ideas, especially the tunnel! New to backyard chickens, found your blog when checking out pics of Golden Comet eggs (have one GC 16 weeks old now) Have some time off today and want to 'stalk' your site :)
    Vickie/Four Oaks, NC

  2. Vickie,
    Welcome to my blog. I hope you find it helpful. I have tried to make it both interesting and informative.

    Come "stalk" us for real ... visit us next time you are near Raleigh. 919-418-4109