When to Plant:
The best time to plant in your area depends on the climate and rainfall patterns as well as the species you are planting.
In cool climates, plant annuals, perennials or mixtures of annuals and perennials in spring, early summer or late fall.
Fall plantings should be late enough so that seeds do not germinate until spring. Perennials can also be sown in early
fall provided that there are at least 10-12 weeks of growing time before the plants go dormant for the winter. In mild
climates, plant during the cooler months of the year, fall through spring, for best results.
Site Preparation: Before planting, remove all weeds and grasses; best results will be obtained by planting on cleared ground. Remove existing vegetation by pulling, tilling under, spraying with a general herbicide, or by a combination of these methods. Loosen compacted soil by scraping, tilling or scarifying. Tilling should be utilized only when soil is very compacted and further weed control measures can be taken.
Planting Rate: A minimum and maximum planting rate is given for each mixture. A planting rate in the minimum range is usually sufficient to establish a good stand of wildflowers on prepared soil with adequate maintenance. The maximum rate is recommended when adequate soil preparation and weed control are impossible, or when a maximum display is required. Avoid using more than the recommended rates since poor perennial establishment may result.
Planting Depth: If seeds are broadcast, rake in LIGHTLY, covering seeds no more than 2-3 times their thickness (some seeds will show on surface of soil). If seeds are drilled, drill to a maximum of 1/4 inch. If hydroseeding is the method of application, hydromulching will provide a top cover.
Moisture: Planted areas MUST be kept consistently moist for 4-6 weeks during the growing season until seedlings are well established. During this period, daily watering may be necessary if rainfall is inadequate. Thereafter, watering should be gradually reduced.
Wildflower maintenance: your keys to success
Maintenance is an essential ingredient in the creation of a successful wildflower planting. The key to an effective, long-term wildflower maintenance program is evaluation and timely follow-up. The site should be evaluated periodically during the growing season to determine if expectations are being met.
Reseeding: Perennial plantings can be reseeded if there are bare spots in the area. It is best to reseed annuals every year if the long lasting color from annuals is desired. In the fall remove dead seed stalks and excessive plant material by mowing or cutting to a height of four to six inches. See "When to Plant" for reseeding in the fall. Spring reseeding should be completed as soon as the ground is workable.
Weed Control: A monthly program of weed control is essential to ensure a satisfactory display of wildflowers year after year. Weeds should be eliminated as soon as they can be recognized, either by pulling, spot-spraying with a general herbicide, or selective cutting with a string trimmer.
Supplemental Watering: Water is a critical factor in wildflower maintenance. In moist climates, regular rainfall may make supplemental watering unnecessary. In arid climates or during drought conditions, up to 1/2 inch of supplemental water per week may be required to maintain an optimal display.
Fertilization: Fertilizers are usually not necessary for wildflower plantings. However, if soil fertility is very low, a low nitrogen fertilizer can be used, or add organic matter such as compost. If you suspect a problem with soil fertility, we recommend a soil test and/or plant tissue analysis.
Fall Mowing and Cleanup: If a neat appearance is desired after the wildflowers have gone to seed, mow them to a height of four to six inches.
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