Chicken forage guilds are designed to maximize the production of chicken feed. As chickens are best rotated between sites to break parasite cycles, forage guilds can be designed for an anticipated season of forage. Following chicken forage, bared soil provides an opportunity to introduce new annual plants into the guild, suggesting plantings that change cyclically, with a high proportion of annual species, species that build up seed banks, or species resilient to grazing.

[At this time these plant lists are theoretical and untested]

Early Summer forage guild (planted Fall)[edit | edit source]

In dry Summer areas, it is difficult to plant seed following early Summer forage, so replanting will either require irrigation or be delayed until Fall.

  • rye shoots
  • comfrey
  • mustard family greens
  • fava beans (Vicea faba)
  • overwintering peas
  • dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)
  • plantain (Plantago spp.)
  • chickweed

Late Summer/Fall forage (planted in Spring)[edit | edit source]

  • lambs quarters
  • dock (Rumex spp.)
  • sunflowers (Helianthus spp.)
  • Siberian pea shrub (Caragana spp.)
  • Wheat, Rye, Barley, Oats, Amaranth, Quinoa or other grains.

Winter forage (planted Spring)[edit | edit source]

  • kale and other overwintering mustards
  • corn salad
  • sunflowers (Helianthus)

Medicinals[edit | edit source]

For additional ideas look at The Complete Herbal Handbook for Farm and Stable

  • Feverfew
  • Wormwood (Artemesia absinthe)
  • Rue (Ruta graveolens)

Potential Relationship[edit | edit source]

Chicken forage guilds can be grown amongst small fruits and orchards that benefit from fertilization.

Trees that produce fence poles can be grown for shade.

Seed for chicken forage guilds can be produced in annual gardens

Chicken tractors can be used to prepare ground for planting chicken guild.

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