In love with lavender! With so many different strains to choose from and their abundant availability at almost all garden centres what’s your excuse for not having any in the garden??
Lavender is a member of the mint family and is not just a pretty face either; it possesses many medicinal benefits from having a soothing effect on the stomach to providing relief from aches and sprains and according to old demonologists the odor of lavender is confident to ward off evil spirits. Some people say it’s soothing scent helps them relax and get to sleep. Best of all flies detest lavender!
Ohhhh yes the flies! Did you almost forget about this annoyance in your winter slumber? Flies are a sure accompaniment to owning chickens and not always welcome by your sometimes too close for comfort suburban neighbors. Your first line of defense is maintaining a level of cleanliness in your hens quarters- changing out your runs litter every few days may not be realistic for most but it certainly your best alli in fly control. I prefer to use straw in the summer- it’s cheap, plentiful and easy to recycle or simply fill your yard bin with. Next up are fly traps- I haven’t found fly tape to be very effective but I have found the fly bags to be of great use. Third is where the lavender comes in! I line the outside of my girls run with potted lavender, mint and basil. All three of these plants help to ward off flies. Not only that but it makes the chickens quarters much more attractive! Sometimes I’ll even dry sprigs of lavender and mix it in with my hens nesting material or coop litter. I also like to make my own lavender, mint and basil spray and use it as a safe and natural fly spray to deter flies in the coop and run.
Heres how I make my own spray:
- 3 bunches (about a handful each) of fresh lavender, mint and basil.
- White vinegar
- Three large mason jars
Place the lavender, mint and basil each in their own mason jar and crush well. Then fill with vinegar and seal. Place in pantry and every now and then give the jars a shake to mix well. I let them sit for about a month. I then strain the vinegar into a spray bottle- equal parts lavender, mint and basil and it’s ready to use!
Lavender planting tip; Keep in mind that lavender planted in poor soil will possess the strongest scent- lavender planted in good soil will grow luxuriously but will not have as strong an odor.
In most recent news Miss Puff finally laid her first egg with us today! Her egg is light brown- in the middle of the other eggs in the picture. Another wonderful day with happy chickens!
au revoir, jusqu’à la prochaine fois!!!