How to create a wildflower meadow

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How to create a wildflower meadow

How to create a wildflower meadow

Last Updated on January 6, 2020 by John

Wildflower Meadows is quickly becoming a wonderful alternative to border Gardens or lawns because they offer of stunning display for months on end and are very easy to maintain.  There are many options for the flowers you can cultivate and the best part is that Wildflower Meadows tend to naturally fill an existing space and offer food and shelter for wildlife including bees, butterflies and other flying insects that so desperately need extra sources of food.

Types of wildflowers

Choosing Perennials or Annuals

You can select annual flowers that give you a one-time show every year or perennial flowers that come back year after year.

Perennial meadows

Perennial Meadows tend to do best in poor soil because the local grasses compete less with the wildflowers you plant. So, if you want a perennial Meadow and you already have the right soil, you are in luck. If, however, you want a perennial Meadow but you have very rich soil, you can Rectify this by removing the top layer and adding some subsoil directly into the mix.

Annual meadows

Annual Meadows need very rich soil so, if you have rich soil it might be easier to simply grow an annual Meadow. Annual meadows also make for a wonderful choice if you have an existing border garden that you are trying to convert, one with decently rich soil the result of previously grown flowers.

Choosing Wildflowers

You can typically get packets of wildflower seeds that offer a mixture of grasses and wildflowers for the exact type of soil and situation you have. Wherever possible, get seeds that are of British origin so that you can bring back the things which would naturally grow in your area. Also, make sure that the seed packets you choose work with your local conditions. You don’t want to take plants that come from the countryside if you don’t live in the countryside and force them to grow in your area as this can be destructive on the native species in your area.

When to sow a wildflower meadow

The best time to sow your seeds in March/April, or in September, contingent upon the conditions of your soil. If you have a lighter soil, you will be able to plant the seeds in September and they should germinate and establish themselves quickly, producing blooms the following spring. If you have heavy soil, you want to wait until March or April to plant your seeds because heavy soil won’t allow the plants to establish themselves before the cold winter months which can lead to water-logging and damage the roots before they’ve had a chance to get going. Ideally, it’s just easier to sow the seeds in spring.

Where to sow seeds

These Wildflower seed mixes should be planted in a larger area of your garden if possible, where they will be allowed to thrive without fighting for nutrients.

Growing wild flowers

Preparing the area for sowing seed

Once you have the large area in question ready, and the seed packet or box, you should prepare the ground where you plan to grow your wildflowers by removing any weeds by hand and adding a weed-suppressing layer to the ground such as a sheet of black plastic. This should be done three months prior to sowing the seeds so that you can ensure all of the weeds are done away with.

If you are planting on a large area that suffers from perennial weeds, you might want to use chemical control methods in addition to non-chemical methods.

See our recommended weedkillers in this review

Once that is ready, dig the soil and loosen it, then rake it in preparation for the seeds. You don’t want to add manure or fertilizer at this stage because it can encourage the grasses to grow too much at the expense of the wildflowers.

When you are ready to sow your seeds, you can cover even a large area by hand quite easily. Pure wildflower seeds should be grown at 1 gram per square meter, Wildflower and grass mixes should be grown at 5 grams per square meter. Pay attention to the individual mix you have and the instructions that are provided. Do your best to evenly scatter the seeds, rake them in lightly, and water them thoroughly. Once this is done you need only protect your seeds with netting during the beginning stages of growth if you have a problem with birds. Other than that, you needn’t do anything but allow the flowers and grasses to grow naturally.

Learn more about preparing the ground for wildflowers in this article.

Potential problems

If you have a mixture of grasses and wildflowers, one potential problem could be the grass is growing too strongly and stealing all the nutrients from the flowers. If this is a problem for you, you can reduce the vigour of your grasses by introducing some semi-parasitic plants like lousewort, rattle, or eye brights. These will help to cut down the grasses and allow the wildflowers access to nutrients.

Popular wildflower seeds to buy

Bestseller No. 1
Plantworks Ltd Empathy Mini Meadow Easy Sow Wild Flower Seed 3m²
  • Ideal for achieving a small mini meadow to create a natural habitat for pollinating bees, bugs and butterflies
  • Easy sow format includes vermiculite
  • All native UK species of flowers
  • All the flowers in mini Medow conform to the RHS guidelines 'RHS perfect for pollinators'
  • The root grow mycorrhiza fungi in mini meadow helps in the establishment of plants and nutrient Supply to enhance flowering
Bestseller No. 2
Buy 2 Packets GET 2 Packets Free 100% UK Wild Flower Seed Mix Annual Meadow Plants Attracts Bees & Butterfly (10g) Wildflower Seeds, IF You Buy 1 Packet You Will Receive 1 Packet
  • GENUINE UK SEEDS
  • Receive 2 free Packets for every 2 Packets Purchased, Buy 1 packet receive 1 packet
  • Professional DEFRA licenced Quality Seed Supply only - Minimal packaging - Ziplock labelled bags - Instructions attached
  • Very colourful display, SOW AT 3g Sq METRE Sow April- June
  • BUY 1 GET 0 FREE, BUY 2 GET 2 FREE ,BUY 3 GET 2 FREE ,BUY 4 GET4 FREE ,BUY 5 GET 4 FREE, BUY 6 GET 6 FREE
Bestseller No. 3
Bee Happy - Premium Bee Friendly Wildflower Seeds Mix: 10g Colourful Bee Meadow Plant Seeds for 5-10 sqm - Bee Flower Garden Seeds - Flowers for Garden - Seeds for Gardening Flowers by OwnGrown
  • 🌼 A BEAUTIFUL HABITAT FOR BEES, bumble bees, butterflies and their friends. Save and preserve the native biodiversity with our bee meadow flower seeds for a long-lasting, insect-friendly bee garden!
  • 🌼 COLORFUL AND HUMMING BEE PASTURE: A specially composed bee friendly wildflower seed mix for a splendid and insect friendly bee pasture - whether in the garden, open field, meadow or in a balcony pot!
  • 🌼 SAVE THE BEES: Support our native busy insects with nectar, pollen and shelter through the selected mixture of wildflower seeds for bees and butterflies. It's also a great supplement to a bee hotel!
  • 🌼 Adorable WILD FLOWER SEED MIX for 5-10 sqm with bee flowers. Sow the garden flowers April-June. Bloom in summer, June-Oct. Height ca. 60cm. Don't cut the wild flowers for the benefit of the bees
  • 🌼 INCLUDES 26 VARIETIES: Cornflower seeds, california poppy seeds, half-height sunflower seeds, marigold seeds, sage seeds, red poppy seeds and more! The appearance changes depending on the season
Bestseller No. 4
Beebombs Wild Flower Seeds UK Native Mix, Wildflower Meadow Seed Balls, Bee Gift
  • HELP BRING THE BEES AND BUTTERFLIES back to Britain by helping to restore some of the 97% of beautiful, colourful wildflower meadow habitat that has been lost since WWII.
  • RE-CREATE THE BEAUTIFUL WILDFLOWER MEADOWS in your garden and make an important contribution to the biodiversity of Great Britain. Bee bombs wildflower seed mix work in planters and pots too.
Bestseller No. 5
UK 100% Wild Flower Seed Mix Annual Meadow Genuine UK Seed Plants Attracts Bees & Butterfly (100g) Pure Wildflower Seeds Mix 3
  • Sow at 1-3g per Square metre
  • DEFRA REGISTERED 7529
  • Genuine UK Branded Product only Sold By Pretty Wild Seeds UK00003149725
  • Read the list of seeds then compare to other poor mixes
  • Sow April to July Avoid Frosts

Image credits – Shutterstock.com

Last update on 2020-10-22 at 09:32 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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