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Wildflower meadow

polbpolb Posts: 198
Hi, I'm thinking of introducing some wildflowers on a bank of grass. I've read that it would be better to plant plug plants into the grass rather than going down the seed root. 

It will cost me a lot to buy plug plants and so I was wondering how easy it would be to sow my own in the greenhouse and then pot them out once they've established. 

Is this easy to do? A good idea? Would it be one seed per small pot or several?

Any recommendations of which varieties to sow and where to buy from? There is so much choice out there, to be honest I'm a bit baffled.. :neutral:
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Posts

  • FireFire LondonPosts: 14,028
    Generally grass will out compete most wild flowers.
  • polbpolb Posts: 198
    ah ok..We have some lovely wildflowers growing elsewhere with grass and they seem to be ok:|  I read somewhere that you can plant plugs into a grassy area to create a mix of grasses and wildflowers.. :neutral:
  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 15,862
    You can sow seed into plug trays. When the roots fill each plug, plant out. Remove an area of grass to plant them into. Yellow rattle helps to reduce the vigorous nature of the grass and helps, if you can establish it. I found it easier to strip all the turf off and plant a variety of plugs into a matrix like system. Some like penny daisies grew too much and have to be severely curtailed. Others struggle, but get there eventually. It has taken three years to establish a patch of sheeps bit scabious, but now it looks like it wants to takeover. I think I have lost the harebells this year.
    You don't stop doing new things because you get old, you get old because you stop doing new things. <3
  • FireFire LondonPosts: 14,028
    You could try with vigorous plants like ox eye daisies or clover, but on the whole, no I don't think it's that easy or quick.
  • polbpolb Posts: 198
    Great thanks for the suggestions. I'm happy to wait a few years and work on it as I understand it will take time to become established.. I'm on a budget and so I'm keen to sow from seed if possible. Just didn't want to start if it was going to be a waste of time etc

    Thanks :smile:
  • vcdavies50vcdavies50 Posts: 3
    I have a large/giant sized specimen type poppy with extremely large orangy red flowers growing in my garden. It was transplaneted from my friends garden to mine about a year ago. It has florished this year. Last season it had in total about 10 flowers.
    According to my friend it usually only carries about 6 ir 7 blooms at a time.
    Mine has 23 buds in total at the moment - it is only one plant!
    Is this a rare occurence?
    Thanks


  • JellyfireJellyfire SuffolkPosts: 1,005
    If you are in no rush and don’t mind the work I’d recommend stripping the grass off and sowing a grass free wildflower mix from one of the online specialists such as  meadowmania, pictorial meadows or wildflowerturf. It’ll depend what grass you have growing but they can easily swamp plug plants and take back over again. Well prepared ground and a seed mix will give you a fantastic meadow by next year, and most of them have a sprinkling of annuals to give you some flowers this year too 
  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 15,862
    Wild flowers like impoverished soil, so stripping the top few inches to leave subsoil is a good idea. However if it is a steep slope, I would just take out patches, as the grass might be holding the soil on to the slope. Planting at the top of the bank is good, seeds tend to fall down it. Think motorway embankments. Around here they are full of cowslips that seem to tumble down the slope.
    You don't stop doing new things because you get old, you get old because you stop doing new things. <3
  • Blue OnionBlue Onion Posts: 2,899
    If you're happy to go beyond wildflower, there are others you could grow that will hold their own in grass.  I have hollyhocks that have seeded all through my grass, as well as an occasional salvia I dig up and transplant back into a bed.  Plant some vigorous self seeding annuals/biannual in your seed trays, and dig out patches of grass to give them a good start when you plant them out.. then let them get on with their thing.  Mow it all down after they have set seed.  You'll probably have to do it every year.. but you may get some self seeders.   
    Utah, USA.
  • JellyfireJellyfire SuffolkPosts: 1,005
    edited May 2018
    If you go for wildflowers, one of the key things is your mowing regime. I find one cut a year, around late august works best, I know some also do a spring cut. The important thing is to cut it as close to the soil as possible, preferably leaving bare exposed soil, this gives the seeds a good chance to set. The other key thing is to remove as much of the clippings as possible, you are basically trying to starve the ground of nutrients, wildflowers need impoverished soil, the more fertile it is the more the grass and perernnial weeds will take hold
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