Did you know that chicken manure made into a compost is probably one of the best ways you can fertilize your vegetable garden? I have fertilized my gardens with chicken manure compost for years because it is high in nitrogen and nutrients. It also contains optimum amounts of potassium and phosphorus.

Before you decide to use chicken manure for fertilizer, it is extremely important that you compost it properly. Because chicken manure is high in nitrogin, it is considered “hot” and can be dangerous to your plants, and can even kill them. Composting the manure cools down the nitrogen, making it safe for your garden.

Composting chicken manure is a very simple process. If you raise your own chickens, use the manure from the chicken coop. Simply gather it up and put it into a compost bin. If you do not have your own chickens, locate a farmer in your area who is willing to sell the manure to you.

Once you have the manure and have placed it into a compost bin, water it thoroughly. I also add leaves, grass clippings and straw to my compost, as it helps to break down the nitrogen even further and adds additional nutrients to the compost. Every few weeks I turn the bin to add air into the pile. Continue this process for 6-9 months. At about 9 months the manure will be composted and ready to use in your garden. However, you can wait up to 12 months to use the chicken manure compost. It can be stored in large buckets or old dog food bags.

Once the manure has composted, it is ready to use. Simply spread it evenly over the garden, working the compost into the soil with either a shovel or a tiller. Your home-made chicken manure fertilizer added to your soil will make excellent conditions for your vegetables. Ever since I began making my own compost, my vegetables have been heartier and more delicious, and they seem to grow in the garden with much less effort!