Spring is a popular time of year to plant wildflowers, however, fall is increasingly becoming the planting season of choice.
The flowers bloom a few weeks earlier the following spring (or summer) once the temperature is just right. All you need to get started is a bare patch of dirt and some wildflower seeds.
Wildflowers can handle tough growing conditions, such as poor soil and adverse weather. With a little preparation you can bring these flowers into your garden and enjoy a vivid show of spring color.
Wildflowers grow in nature without help, they will benefit from a little assistance to get started in your garden.
In in the wild, seeds of wildflowers fall to the ground in autumn and come up the following spring when rain and warm temperatures arrive. The same timeline can also work for planting wildflower seeds in the home garden.
Zones 1 to 6 – This region there is a time table in which seeds should be sown. This occures after temperatures dip below freezing 32 degrees Fahrenheit and before the ground freezes.
Zones 7 to 11 – In these zones, wildflower seeds can be sown about anytime between September and December.
Wildflowers that grow in your area will be the easiest to grow, they are adapted to the soil and climate conditions where you live.
Check with your local cooperative extension office or Master Gardener program for a list of wildflowers that do well where you live.
Visit WildflowerInformation.org for a list of wildflowers that grow well in your region.
In general, wildflowers do best in areas that receive at least six hours of sun. Wildflower gardens do best when provided with supplemental water during long dry periods.
To plant wildflowers, spread seeds by lightly throwing them with your hands over the prepared area. However, to make it easier to evenly spread seeds, mix them with sand (one part seeds to 10 parts sand) so you can see where you have spread them.
Lightly rake the seeds into the soil, roll the area or simply walk over the newly seeded area, to help press them into the soil, where they will receive the sun they need to germinate. It’s important to keep the seeds within the top quarter inch (1/4) inch of soil, or they may not germinate.
Hint Birds may become a problem in your newly seeded area, you can add temporary protection. Cover the area with bird netting suspended on wood stakes about 1 to 2 feet tall.
When flowers turn brown you may be tempted to pull them out, stop don’t do that. They need to dry completely so that they will drop new seeds onto the ground for the following year’s wildflower garden. After your wildflowers have dried and the seeds have had a chance to fall to the ground, you can cut them down with a lawn mower or string trimmer and rake away the old plants. Better yet leave them to act as a ground cover providing protection from harsh weather and birds.
I don’t work for eBay, but, they are a good source for many common wildflower seeds.
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