How to prepare for and sow wildflower seeds

Wildflower Seeding

The simple approach to Wildflower seeding is to clear the ground. Sow a grass and wildflower seed mix at 4 grams to the sq metre. A 100% wildflower seed mix at 1.5 gram. Sow March to May or August to early October.

How and when to sow wildflower seed.  

Ready for wildflower planting

Seed Bed Preparation

Whatever type of wildflower seed you sow the key to success is in the preparation.  You need to make sure that the ground is a clear and good even seed bed is created before sowing. Ideally you would remove what is growing there already and also encourage the existing seed bank to germinate. Then remove that as well before sowing. Wildflower are slow to establish and do not like much competition early on so the more you reduce the competition before sowing the better chance of success.

Preparing a bare seed bed

Choosing a Wildflower Seed Mix

There are three main options in term of what you sow;

1. A perennial meadow mix. This is generally a mixture of grass ( 80%) and perennial wildflowers (20%) You would sow this at 4 grams to the sq metre. It is best to sow some grass with the wildflower seed if there is no grass there already. The perennials natural habitat is with grass as a back drop and you are sowing a very small amount of grass per sq. metre. The perennials come back year after year.

2. 100% Perennials Wildflower seed mix. Sow this at 1.5 grams the sq metre. This is where you have some grass growing there already, ideally less than 50% of the ground covered. Or if you think grass will grow back naturally. With both of these first two types of mixes you choose one that matches your soil or conditions.

3. Cornfield annuals mixes.  These last one year only but are very colourful. The seed rate is 2 grams to the sq metre. They prefer more fertile conditions.

Difference between wildflower mixtures

Wildflower Seeding

When the time is right, the ground is ready and you have the right seed mix then it is time to sow the seed. Because of the low seed rate we normally recommend bulking up the seeds with something such as sand. It is important also to do an bit of experimenting early on to get a sense of the right seed rate. When you sow lawn seed that goes on at 40 grams to the square metre. So, this will feel like a very small amount of seed. Before sowing rake the ground. Then broadcast/scatter the seed mixture. Ideally roll the ground or walks all over it afterwards. This pushes the seed into the ground rather than buries it to deep. Then leave well alone Cornfield annual mixes can establish relatively quickly, perennial mixers will be slower and much more patchy when growing. If you need any more information or advice please feel free to contact us direct by phone or e-mail.

Woman in a british wildflower meadow