How to Use Chicken Manure As Fertilizer


When it comes to organic fertilizers, chicken manure is one of the best. Its nitrogen content is among the highest of all natural manures, and it also contains high levels of phosphorous and potassium. If you or someone you know has chickens, use the manure as a fertilizer rather than discarding it. But do not spread fresh, raw manure in your garden, as this may destroy young plants and even spread certain diseases. Compost chicken manure before applying it to the garden as fertilizer.

Step 1

Collect fresh chicken manure and pile it up in a corner of the garden to age, or compost. Add a few handfuls of grass to your manure and mix it with a shovel. Spray it with water and spread a tarp over the pile.

Step 2

Remove the tarp every other day and turn the pile with a shovel. The pile will initially be quite hot and may stream. This is good. Sprinkle a little more water on the pile whenever it appears to be drying out. Return the tarp. Continue this turning process for 30 days.

Step 3

Scoop the composted manure into buckets with a shovel. Spread the manure around your vegetable garden or flower garden. For optimum results, spread approximately 45 pounds of manure per 100 square feet.

Step 4

Water your flowers and vegetables well after fertilizing. Continue watering normally as the manure works its way into the soil and decomposes over the next few weeks. One application per season of approximately 45 pounds of composted manure per 100 square feet will produce healthy vegetables and the colorful flowers.

Tips and Warnings

  • Always wash your hands well after handling un-composted manure. Composted manure has far fewer bacteria and viruses than raw manure.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Pails
  • Chicken manure
  • Grass
  • Tarp


  • Seattle Tilth: Composting Chicken Manure
  • University of Florida: Poultry Manure as a Fertilizer
Keywords: chicken manure fertilizer, composting chicken manure, chicken manure gardening

About this Author

Larry Parr has been a full-time professional freelance writer for more than 30 years. For 25 years he wrote cartoons for TV, everything from SMURFS to SPIDER-MAN.