photo by Linda Lamb Peters

I'm pretty sure our Test Garden hens eat better than I do.

They're absolutely babied by our food editor, Margo True—she brings them all the fresh test kitchen scraps each and every day, on top of the well-balanced chicken food they're also fed daily. Despite my jealousy (which is silly—Margo keeps all of us well fed), I'm getting in on the action. I sowed them the forage blend from Peaceful Valley Farm & Garden Supply. It's an omega-3–rich mix of alfalfa, clover, and flax that helps hens make healthier eggs (which, I'd like to tell you, they barely lay anymore—they're old!), while letting them nibble at greens (every chicken’s dream). They love it. It's like an all-you-can-eat buffet in that chicken coop!

It's easy: 

1. Plant after all danger of frost has passed.

2. Sow seeds in flats that you can keep out of of your hens' way.

3. Keep moist until seeds germinate, and then water regularly.

4. Let your ladies have at it when seedlings are 2–5 inches tall.

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