Where Elvis Lives

– Posted in: Garden Design, Miscellaneous

Storage has been at a premium here at Clatter Valley since we turned the garage into a painting studio for my wife. I was hard put for a spot for the lawnmower, assorted pots, hoses, tools and all the bric brac of gardening, so I built this 8×12 shed fronted with a 6×12 porch. Together they make a colorful backdrop for my four-square veggie garden. The idea was to use the shed for storage and as a potting shed. I built a south-facing skylight into the roof and put to use an old greenhouse bay window type thingie which now comprises most of the south wall. But my little shed is stuffed so full of stuff each winter I can barely get in the door, let alone use it for seed starting type activities. Then we got chickens. And things got worse.

Long story short, we soon had a chicken coop to house our 15 chickens, 5 ducks, and 1 goose. If you look at the shed head on, it appears as if shed and coop are a single building. They’re not. I just wanted it to look that way. You get to the coop by following a boardwalk from the shed’s porch around the corner to the coop.  That where Elvis lives (he’s our white-crested Pekin duck). Now, we still have storage issues, since what room I was able to make in the shed is now taken by chicken feed (which, as a point of future reference, is NOT cheap), bales of straw etc. So one building begets another. My current project is an 4×8 foot storage-only shed, where I hope to stash all that everything. And maybe some day, I’ll start a few flats of seeds in the shed.

Steve Silk

Steve Silk

Steve Silk

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Barbarapc October 27, 2008, 1:28 pm

This almost reminds me of George Carlin’s “stuff” story, where he explains how we always need more room for our stuff – and then when we have the room, we need more stuff. I say, make the shed bigger and make sure you’ve got fixed racks and lights for your seeds.
p.s.Do you dye Elvis’ lovely crest black for Halloween?

I remember that “stuff” monolog. George Carlin was a sage! No dye for Elvis’s crest, he’s not the most patient duck–he’d never sit still for or it. Not that we’d try.–Steve

Layanee October 27, 2008, 6:53 pm

Love the shed(s), the chickens, and, your wife’s paintings! They are beautiful!

Thank you Layanee. I’ve always liked that shed too, I just build things out of my head-no drawn plans-and sometimes they turn out even better than I envisioned. –Steve

Cameron (Defining Your Home Garden) October 27, 2008, 10:19 pm

I love everything about your design and implementation! How wonderful! Looks like life is pretty good. Your poultry pets are adorable!

I recently wrote an article about Silkie Bantams. Since then (my new awareness), I’ve just been amazed at the many gardeners who have pet chickens! I grew up around them, but can’t have them here (HOA rules).


Hi Cameron–Thanks! Yes the chickens are fun little critters. This spring, after the last of our guinea hens got picked off by a hawk, we got a whole assortment of Bantams, including some silkies, who are now in a protected run. We got our first egg yesterday.–Steve

Lisa at Greenbow October 28, 2008, 7:54 am

I can see where your wife might get inspiration for some of her paintings. The shed is worthy of her efforts.

Thanks Lisa. My wife does a few gardenesque paintings, but is mostly devoted to other kinds of subjects.–Steve

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