12 Tips to Help Chicken Proof Your Garden

Having chickens can be fun and rewarding, especially once you start getting eggs. For the most part, they are easy to take care of, but they do love to get into everything! While nothing is truly “chicken-proof”, we’ve provided some ideas to help keep your garden and your chickens healthy and hopefully keep them from destroying all of your plants. It is also important to note that what works for keeping some chickens out of the garden and from eating or destroying your plants will not work for others -unfortunately, it’s trial and error. Hopefully, some of these will work for you and your flock of chickens.

A Chicken walking in front of pots of shrubs from Proven Winners Color Choice Shrubs
  • Add roosting options in and around your garden. This will help deter your chickens from sitting directly on your plants when resting.
Two chickens roosting with a chicken below them and chickens running behind the fence
  • Avoid planting too many fragrant plants – chickens think they smell good too. Some of their favorites are violets, marigolds, and lilacs.
  • Be careful where you plant younger plants, they have tender and tastier leaves according to chickens.
  • Put shrubs and plants you don’t want your chickens to have access to in containers or in fenced-off areas.
A Chicken walking in the garden near rocks
Photo credit: @gardensandchickens Instagram
  • Make sure your chickens are always well fed – although they’ll eat plants and shrubs when they have plenty of food, you don’t want to force them to eat your plants as their only source of food.
  • Discourage chickens from scratching the dirt around your plants by strategically placing heavier rocks around the base of plants or as a barricade they can’t get around.
Close up of the berries of the Viburnum Brandywine
A chicken looking at a Italian Ice Rose flower
Photo credit: @gardensandchickens Instagram

Remember nothing is fully “chicken-proof” these tips are just to help deter your chickens from eating, pecking, and scratching at your gardens. If a chicken does end up destroying one of your plants check out “Why gardening with chickens is beneficial” as a reminder of all the good your chickens do for not only you, but your garden as well.

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Picture of McKenna


I am new to the gardening scene and love sharing information and inspiration as I continue to learn and grow with my garden. My sunny and small apartment balcony in USDA zone 6 is the current source of my gardening inspiration. I have filled this small space with herbs, vegetables, shrubs, and more as I continue to search for a house to fulfill my gardening dreams. I also will be sharing interesting tips on gardening with chickens as I grew up showing, breeding, and raising them.


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