How to sow wildflower seeds in your garden

Wildflowers add a great variety of vibrant and versatile blooms to your garden, and they don't stop there! They are also a vital food source for bees and pollinators and provide a year round habitat for local wildlife.

If you're considering introducing wildflowers into your garden, here's the best method how:

The best time to sow wildflower seeds is in autumn as this will give you the earliest display of wildflowers. However, wildflower seeds can be sown throughout the year with bloom usually taking place after 60-80 days. It may be the case that the first bloom may be after the first winter of the seeds being in the soil.

  1. Growing wildflowers is a lot easier in poor soil conditions – prepare your area of choice by starving the soil of nutrients or by selecting an area already deficient in nutrients / disused. You can help to reduce soil fertility by stripping away the top 5-10 cm of soil.
  2. Remove all existing grass, plants, flora and weed for successful germination. If you do not, they will stunt the establishment and growth of your wildflower seeds.
  3. Dig the soil over and firm it down before raking to create a level seed bed.
  4. Sow the wildflower seed either by hand or with a seed spreader. We recommend sowing the wildflower seed at a rate of 5g per m2 of soil.  If using a spreader, please contact your manufacturer for the correct setting.
  5. Cover the newly seeded area of your garden with netting to protect from birds.
  6. Ensure the soil is kept moist during hot, dry periods for the best germination.

Extra Tips

  • When preparing the soil avoid using fertilisers.
  • After you have prepared the soil we recommend allowing the soil to settle for up to 6 weeks. This also allows any weed seeds to germinate, which can then be removed.
  • For best growth it’s important that the soil is warm and doesn’t dry out. Ensure you water the soil regularly particularly if there is a hot spell.

Selecting the best seeds for you

Whilst wildflowers can grow virtually anywhere, some are better at growing in certain conditions that others and this is something you should take into consideration. Please note that mixes without grass will provide an ornamental display and not a year round habitat.

Wildflower mixes for normal soil types in non-shaded areas 

  • Annuals Mix (does not include grass) – contains the nation's favourite cornfield annuals for an ornamental display.
  • Meadow Magic (does not include grass) - contains a mix of UK native annuals and perennials for an ornamental display.
  • Flowering Meadow (includes grass) – contains a mixture of UK native annuals and perennials that are RHS Plants for Pollinators approved as well as complimenting arable grasses.
  • Bees and Pollinators (includes grass) - contains a mixture of UK native annuals and perennials that are excellent at attracting bees and pollinators and are RHS Plants for Pollinators approved. This mix also contains complimenting arable grasses.

Wildflower mixes for shaded areas

  • Shaded Area Wildflowers (includes grass) - contains UK native annual and perennial wildflowers that are shade tolerant and can be typically found growing naturally in forested areas.

Wildflower mixes for problematic soils

  • Heavy Clay Soil Wildflower  (includes grass) – contains UK native annual and perennial wildflowers that thrive in clay soils, also contains complimenting arable grasses.
  • Sandy Soil Wildflower (includes grass) – contains UK native annual and perennial wildflowers that thrive in sandy soils, also contains complimenting arable grasses.

For more information on how to manage your wildflower meadow, read our guide here. 

 

 

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