Our #GrowInspired series features our innovative and creative garden partners. Whether they’re working with two acres or 200 square feet, we are constantly in awe of their hard work and kick-ass gardens. These are some of our favorite gardens and gardeners who inspire us to get out and play in the dirt.
Ashley Leibelt, known on Instagram as @risenshinemothercluckers, has garnered a hefty following on social media for her vibrant storytelling and photos of her chickens, gorgeous eggs, animals, and life on a farm in Eastern Oregon. We chatted with her about her love of gardening, her obsession with houseplants, and her tips for raising chickens.
On why Ashley Gardens
I’ve been gardening for 8 years.What I love most about gardening is the satisfaction of growing from seed. I get inspired by canning and preserving so in turn that inspires my gardening!
Her Gardening Advice
The best gardening advice I would give is to really feed and nurture your soil. The better the soil the better your plants.
On Ashley’s Garden and Her Challenges
My biggest garden challenge is patience. I want fruits and veggies to grow FAST and NOW! We are currently in the process of designing a new garden. We have recently moved and are starting over. The greenhouse is 20’X48’ and I will have a huge outdoor space as well. I plan to have mostly beds inside the greenhouse and will do in-ground in the outdoor space. A green house is a necessity in eastern Oregon because the weather can be very harsh. We are in zone 2-3.
On Ashley’s Houseplant Obsession
Houseplants ... where to even start. I think my favorite is the split leaf monstera. I can’t discriminate though I love them all. When we moved last year I brought 30-40 plants!
On Raising Chickens
I’ve been raising chickens for eight years now. I started out with four Rhode Island Reds. They are such good layers and I only knew I wanted brown eggs. Things escalated quickly! I really don’t know how many chickens I have now. I’ve lost count! They are so damn addicting! The breeds I have are Ameraucanas, Easter Eggers, Olive Eggers, Black Copper Marans, Cochin, Welsummers, Rhode Island Red, Barred Rock, Buff Orpington, White Leghorn, and Brown Leghorn.
Ashley’s Favorite Chicken
My favorite chicken is a Black Copper Maran named Cardi. She is so funny and friendly. So talkative! She’s always squawking about something.
Ashley’s Favorite Thing To Cook With Eggs
Our favorite recipe for the eggs is definitely egg burritos. We are from Southern California originally and we LOVE Mexican food.
Other Animals That Round Out Her Farm
We have two horses, two dogs, two cats, five pigs, four ducks, a rabbit and enough chickens that I’ve lost count.
Ashley’s Advice For New Chicken Owners
The advice I would give to people starting with chickens is DO YOUR RESEARCH! They are very easy keepers but prepare yourself. They depend on you. Be a responsible pet owner.
You can follow Ashley and her farming adventures on Instagram @risenshinemothercluckers.