Chicken Manure, AKA the ‘Black Gold’ of Gardening

Keeping your soil nutrient rich is essential for gardeners. A great way to provide a nutrient boost to your garden is by using the “black gold” of gardening, also known as chicken manure.

chickens; chicken manure improves soil
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

What is it?

Along with the chicken’s droppings, chicken manure contains everything from the coop that gets cleaned out. This often includes urine, feathers, leftover feed, and even bedding materials. Because of these additions, chicken manure often contains two times as much nitrogen and phosphorus content as manure of other farm animals.

But surprisingly, not all chicken manure is made the same. The ratio of droppings to other materials can cause variations, as well as other factors like the chickens’ age and how they’re raised.

Benefits — more than just fertilizer

Overall, looking into using chicken manure in your gardens doesn’t hurt. In fact, it could be extremely beneficial to the garden.

This complete fertilizer contains essential macronutrients like nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, but it also contains important micronutrients that plants need for healthy growth like calcium.

However, chicken manure is more than just a great fertilizer, it’s also a soil amendment, adding organic matter to the soil which helps in a few ways. Firstly, organic matter helps break down organic nutrients faster, allowing plants to absorb them more quickly. Plus, the organic matter also improves the soil structure, aeration, and drainage.

Another benefit to using chicken manure as fertilizer is that it’s a great source of heat. By using this material as fertilizer, gardeners provide a means to help the soil regulate temperature and prevent moisture loss.

Different Kinds

Alright, many of you are probably thinking but what if I don’t have chicken coops to provide the manure? Not a problem. Owning a chicken coop is not a requirement; gardeners can still reap the benefits of chicken manure without owning chickens. Local gardening centers typically carry a commercially processed form.

Using the commercially processed form of the product is not a bad thing; in this case, it may actually be better. The process the manure undergoes creates a more concentrated, odor-free, and sterilized product, allowing for immediate use if needed.

On the other hand, for those who have chicken manure handy, it’s essential to take the proper precautions. With fresh manure, there is a real possibility that the manure contains harmful bacteria. Because of this, gardeners should compost or age the manure before using it on any food crops.

To Learn More

Looking for more information to help your garden thrive? Senior Security Alliance USA posts about a variety of gardening topics; from choosing the right container to use to choosing the best plants for beginner gardeners, we have the information for you.

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