7 Beneficial Herbs to Grow for Chickens

Growing herbs for chickens is a great way to improve the health of your flock! Herbs provide great benefits for your birds and you can use them too! I have dappled in growing and supplementing herbs into my hen’s diet for the past two years. This past year though, I really learned about the helpful and nutritious benefits herbs have for my chickens. Now I would like to help you begin growing and utilizing these amazing plants! Below are a few herbs to grow for chickens along with tips on how I use them and their benefits to your flock.

7 Herbs to Grow for Chickens- Herbs are very beneficial for both you and your flock! These seven herbs are easy to grow and most of them come up year after year!

I grow sage, lavender, oregano, thyme, rosemary, basil, and spearmint in my herb garden. These herbs have amazing nutritional benefits for your flock and I am excited to share them with you!

7 Herbs to Grow for Chickens- Herbs are very beneficial for both you and your flock! These seven herbs are easy to grow and most of them come up year after year!

Sage

Planting: Sage is a perennial herb, which means it will come up year after year. It prefers full sun to partial shade and grows best in well-drained soil. I planted my sage from seed, but some people have found that they can grow it better when they plant it as a seedling.

Harvesting: I harvest my sage periodically throughout the summer and fall. Trim or pinch off large leaves and either feed them fresh to your hens or dry them for later. Do not harvest more than one-third of your plant at one time.

Uses: Sage helps promote overall good health. It is even thought that sage helps control the salmonella count in a chicken’s intestines! Sage is also a great insect repellant and calming herb. I often crumble dried sage in my chicken’s feed and place bundles of it around my coop to help repel flies.

Benefits:

  • antioxidant
  • anti-parasitic
  • health promoter
  • laying stimulant
  • may combat salmonella

7 Herbs to Grow for Chickens- Herbs are very beneficial for both you and your flock! These seven herbs are easy to grow and most of them come up year after year!

Lavender

Planting: Lavender is another perennial herb that grows best in well-drained soil. I planted my lavender as a seedling but it also grows well from seed too. Lavender can also be grown in pots as long as you keep the soil well-drained.

Harvesting: Just like sage, I harvest my lavender throughout the growing season. I cut off some of the larger stalks and strip them of their leaves to dry in the oven. You can also tie bunches of lavender stalks together and let them air dry by hanging them in a cool, dry place.

Uses: Lavender is best known for it’s calming effect and is a great stress reliever. I put bunches of lavender in and around my nesting boxes to help the hens feel like it is a safe place to lay their eggs. I also crumble small amounts of dried lavender in their feed.

Benefits:

  • stress reliever
  • increases blood circulation
  • very aromatic
  • repels insects

7 Herbs to Grow for Chickens- Herbs are very beneficial for both you and your flock! These seven herbs are easy to grow and most of them come up year after year!

Oregano

Planting: I have found that oregano is one of the easiest herbs to grow. It is another perennial herb that grows in well-drained soil and prefers full sun. I started my oregano from seed but it can also be planted as a seedling. It does not require a whole lot of water and grows very well without much maintenance.

Harvesting: Oregano is a ground covering herb that can be harvested throughout it’s growing season. I like to dry the leaves and save them to add to the chicken feed during the winter. I also cut fresh bunches to place in my coop and brooder. Oregano is one herb that I don’t want to be without!

Uses: I use my oregano all the time! I am constantly adding it to my chicken’s feed and placing bundles in my coop and brooder for the chick’s and chickens to eat whenever they want.  It is a very beneficial herb and fights  many poultry diseases including coccidian, infectious bronchitis, avian flu, and E. coli!

Benefits:

  • strengthens immune system
  • combats serious poultry diseases

7 Herbs to Grow for Chickens- Herbs are very beneficial for both you and your flock! These seven herbs are easy to grow and most of them come up year after year!

Thyme

Planting: Thyme is another ground covering herb that spreads well. I transplanted mine as a small plant into well-drained soil. It grows best in full sun.  Thyme is also another perennial herb that is very hardy.

Harvesting: Like all the other herbs, I harvest thyme throughout its growing season. I like to cut stalks of thyme and strip off the leaves to dry. Thyme can also be dried similar to lavender, by hanging groups of the stalks in a cool, dry place.

Uses: Thyme is a great herb to promote respiratory health! I like to add it to my chicken’s feed and also place bunches of it around my coop. I also like to sneak some into my chicken’s snacks like oatmeal or scraps! Thyme would also be a good herb to make some tea with and offer it cooled to your chickens!

Benefits:

  • promotes respiratory health
  • antibacterial
  • antioxidant
  • anti-parasitic
  • laying stimulant

7 Herbs to Grow for Chickens- Herbs are very beneficial for both you and your flock! These seven herbs are easy to grow and most of them come up year after year!

Rosemary

Planting: Rosemary is a perennial herb that likes full sun and well-drained, sandy soil. Be sure not to over water your rosemary. I planted mine as a seedling as I have heard that it does not grow as well when planted from seed. Rosemary is a frost sensitive herb so it is best brought indoors when the weather turns cold.

Harvesting: You can harvest your rosemary very similar to thyme. Trimming stalks when needed or stripping leaves off the stalks to dry. I like to hang bunches of rosemary around my coop.

Uses: I have just begun using rosemary this year and have heard of some great ways of using it in my coop. Hanging bunches in my coop can help repel flies. Steeping rosemary in some warm water and cooling it makes a great herbal tea for my flock! Adding it to their feed is also beneficial as is including  it in a slave for treating wounds!

Benefits:

  • pain reliever
  • improves respiratory health
  • repels insects

7 Herbs to Grow for Chickens- Herbs are very beneficial for both you and your flock! These seven herbs are easy to grow and most of them come up year after year!

Basil

Planting: Basil is an annual herb that is cold sensitive and likes full sun and moist soil. I have had the most success with planting basil as an already developed plant. Plant your basil after the soil has been warmed and the temperatures are staying above 50 degrees F.

Harvesting: I harvest my basil throughout it’s growing season and I make sure to harvest all of it before the first frost in the fall. Basil leaves will turn black if they are exposed to the cold. I like to pick big leaves and add them to my chicken’s feed or offer the leaves to them free choice.

Uses: I use basil as a feed supplement for my laying hens and it is also very beneficial for chicks. Basil is also a great herb to have around to use in the kitchen!

Benefits:

  • antibacterial
  • improves mucus membrane health
  • repels insects

7 Herbs to Grow for Chickens- Herbs are very beneficial for both you and your flock! These seven herbs are easy to grow and most of them come up year after year!

Spearmint

Planting: Spearmint is probably one of the easiest herbs to grow! It is a prolific perennial that spreads quickly. It can easily be planted from cuttings or by transplanting some of the ‘runners’ the plant sends out. Spearmint grows in pretty much any type of soil and can even be grown in a cup of water! My spearmint plant is a transplant and is thriving!

Harvesting: If you don’t want your spearmint to over grow the area in which you planted it in, then you will have to be persistent with pulling up the runners and trimming it back. I love trimming big bunches of it and placing it my coop and brooder! I also like to dry my mint to have it over the winter.

Uses: Spearmint is a great herb to put around and in the coop to help it smell fresh and clean! I also like putting pieces of it in my chick brooder to keep it smelling good too! You can also add a few leaves to your hen’s fresh drinking water or toss some in the nesting boxes!

Benefits:

  • insect and rodent repellant
  • antioxidant
  • improves respiratory health
  • aids digestion
  • helps hens lay larger eggs
  • helps egg shell thickness
  • increases egg production

7 Herbs to Grow for Chickens- Herbs are very beneficial for both you and your flock! These seven herbs are easy to grow and most of them come up year after year!

With all those fantastic benefits how can you not want to plant at least a few herbs for your hens and yourself?! Most of the herbs mentioned above are fairly easy to grow and will even come back up year after year! I love using my herbs and hope you will enjoy them too! Check out this feed supplement recipe that I make using herbs, fresh or dried, from my garden!

I would love to hear how you use your herbs for your flock!

by Alexa

7 Herbs to Grow for Chickens- Herbs are very beneficial for both you and your flock! These seven herbs are easy to grow and most of them come up year after year!