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#67913 - 05/30/06 06:21 PM trees in a run for shade
RIR32 Offline
Coop Cleaner

Registered: 07/09/05
Posts: 185
Loc: Kentucky
i would like to put a tree in my run. to give my chickens some more shade. does anyone now what would be the best kind of tree? i dont want to put something in there that when my chickens eat the leaves it makes them sick.

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#67914 - 05/30/06 06:34 PM Re: trees in a run for shade
Rob2 Offline
Classroom Professor

Registered: 03/28/03
Posts: 3068
Loc: Pennsylvania
I want to get some Miscanthus Gigantius in my waterfowl yards. Its a giant grass, about 8-10 feet tall & produces strong bamboo like seed stalks(it will not spread by seed) which make dandy garden row markers and flower stakes. I have a lot of it around the garden pool area, between the barn as a visual barrier from the barnyard. I think it would be great in a poultry yard.

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#67915 - 05/30/06 10:38 PM Re: trees in a run for shade
CJR Offline
Coop Master

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 8501
Loc: Montana
I have a wonderful apple tree in one of my runs--pruned low and wide, it is beautiful in bloom, gives wonderful shade and later, windfall apples, which they enjoy. My other runs have trees OUTSIDE their pens, houses are on the North, and runs are on the south, trees and shrubs south of the runs, so they are shaded in summer, but it doesn't interfere with tne netting over the top, but I have to bounce the leaves off the netting in the fall. There is a very large Vine Maple, and a Seedling Filbert and Lilacs that also have gotten very tall. Shade in summer and when leaves are gone, the houses get sun in the winter. Except for winter, the grass stays green in the runs and is watered and mowed weekly. I seldom let the birds out in winter. CJR

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#67916 - 05/31/06 03:22 PM Re: trees in a run for shade
RIR32 Offline
Coop Cleaner

Registered: 07/09/05
Posts: 185
Loc: Kentucky
Do you think a cherry tree would be alright? i would try to bet the chickens and get the cherries for myself. i like that Miscanthus Gigantius. if i could get read of the cat tails round my pond. i would like to put some of that Miscanthus Gigantius around my pond. i have two apple trees and a peach tree in my yard now. so maybe 1 or 2 cherry trees in the run. the run is 75' x 34'.

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#67917 - 05/31/06 05:07 PM Re: trees in a run for shade
Joachim Dippold Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 02/28/06
Posts: 1823
Loc: Austria
Hello,

We found all kind of trees and bushes are the most desirable places for our birds to hang out. They love the shelter from the sun as well as from hawks and buzzards. We have the following trees in our runs: apple, bulb, cherry, peach, nut, oak, plum and apricot. We leave most of the fruits for the butterflies and for our birds.

But there´s also a drawback when sheltering most of the garden with big trees: the danger of a bird getting hit by falling limbs or fruits. We lost Dana (our tallest Partridge Brahma hen) due to an apple falling right down on her head from great height on a windy day;-(

Here is our big apple-tree:


(click to enlarge, direct-link: http://www.krassesrudel.at/fotos/garten/baum/slides/mostapfelbaummithuhn.jpg )

Caution with Wisteria, it´s a beautiful climbing plant who´s semen are highly poisonous to humans, maybe also to chickens! Eating only 3 semen can cause diarrhea, headache, dizziness and circulatory collapse.

Lilies are poisonous to birds, we lost a Bantam Cochin hen who ate just a few beaks full of this beautiful plant;-(

Best greetings,

Joachim

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#67918 - 06/01/06 01:56 AM Re: trees in a run for shade
Anonymous
Unregistered


rir32, just check into the cherry trees. I am trying to remember what it was about them. We were warned not to let horses eat to much of the leaves. It was when I was a kid so I don't really remember. I am thinking arsenic content but I am not sure.

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#67919 - 06/01/06 08:22 AM Re: trees in a run for shade
CJR Offline
Coop Master

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 8501
Loc: Montana
Wild cherry, chokecherry, leaves do contain deadly poison for horses, if eaten in any quantity. Chickens would not eat the leaves, but I do not know if I would want them eating cherries with pits?? And the Pie Cherry trees remain smaller and are very nice. However, there are flowering cherries that have no fruit--or Pears, Prunes? Lots of choices. Remember, you will have to rake the leaves out in the fall or any grass is smothered, and dwarf or small trees will require less pruning over the years. Good luck, CJR

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#67920 - 06/01/06 10:37 AM Re: trees in a run for shade
Rack Offline
Flock Leader

Registered: 08/11/04
Posts: 384
Loc: Virginia
In our yard we have apple, peach and cedar.
They love the peaches, don't eat the apples, and cedar keeps the bugs off of them.

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#67921 - 06/01/06 11:35 AM Re: trees in a run for shade
A. Charles Offline
Chicken

Registered: 11/13/04
Posts: 93
Loc: Arkansas
We have a lot of wild cherry's and have no problems with them. The one thing you might want to watch for is Tent caterpillars nests in the Spring. I would imagine the chickens might eat their droppings (little black things) and also a caterpillar if it fell or crawled form the tree. Both the droppings, and I imagine the caterpillar itself would be heavy in Arsenic from the cherry tree. A lot of horses died form a "mysterious" disease in Kentucky a couple of years back and it turned out that they were ingesting tent caterpillar droppings while grazing.

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#67922 - 06/01/06 01:38 PM Re: trees in a run for shade
CBS Offline
Chicken

Registered: 06/24/05
Posts: 84
Loc: Georgia
I believe the toxin is cyanide, not arsenic. The pits of cherries, plums, apricots, and peaches contain varying amounts of it. If you open up a peach pit, you can detect the almond smell--the classic odor of cyanide.

Don't know how many cherry pits a chicken would have to ingest and grind up in their gizzards to create a health hazard (for the chicken and anyone eating the eggs laid by it), but there is some level of risk there. I'd plant something else just to be safe.

I started to suggest a crabapple tree, but then I realized that wild birds enjoy eating those, too. Probably wouldn't be wise to plant anything that attracted wild birds to your chicken yard to potentially spread diseases and parasites...

Good luck and let us know what you eventually choose, rir32!

Cheers,
CBS

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