Low Maintenance Wild Flower Garden

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Matt31

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  • Location: Richhill, Co. Armagh, Northern Ireland
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Low Maintenance Wild Flower Garden
« on: April 19, 2012, 09:37 »
I will very soon be aquiring a brand new allotment and because the plot I will be getting is more than big enough for my Veg growing needs I thought that at least one third of it could be turned into a sort of wild flower garden and I was thinking of wild meadow flowers of some sort.  My knowledge of flowers is some what limited so I was wandering if our memebrs could give me some advice on the following questions:-
1/ Is there such things as hardy perennial LOW MAINTENANCE wild meadow flowers that could attract plenty of insect wildlife as well?
2/ If I do this how could I tell the the young sprouting weeds from the wild flowers?
3/ How do I go about growing such a garden? do I grow it from seed ?

Hope you can help.

Thanks in advance.
Matt

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bertiewhite

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Re: Low Maintenance Wild Flower Garden
« Reply #1 on: April 19, 2012, 11:18 »
I've had the same idea about setting aside parts of my veg plot for wild flowers to attract pollinating insects and had collected all sorts of seeds from dead flowerheads at the end of last year & made a mix of them all. All I've done is lightly scratch over a few corner areas of the plot, then mark them with a few broken lengths of bamboo cane and cover with some scrap netting & string so that I know where I sowed them but also to ensure nobody interferes with the area thinking that they are "helping".

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Dopey113

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Re: Low Maintenance Wild Flower Garden
« Reply #2 on: April 19, 2012, 11:25 »
Did mine just over a week ago at the back of the plot, many seeds.... about 40k its only about 10% of my plot, but im hoping for a nice show come the summer months
If Its Not Growing... Its Dead.

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Trillium

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Re: Low Maintenance Wild Flower Garden
« Reply #3 on: April 19, 2012, 15:28 »
See my answer on this thread.

You'll soon become familiar with common weeds to recognize them. What you don't recognize, then leave until you've identified what it is.

All true meadow flowers are no maintenance; they've looked after themselves for eons.  What will do best are your own native species.

As for attracting insects and wildlife, google for plant types that are high in nectar or are the best food sources for the specific types of insects you hope to attract. For me, I want to attract the beautiful Monarch butterfly, and it's habitat is the milkweed plant which is the only place it will lay its eggs. However, farmers detest milkweed and do everything they can to eliminate it. I have one plant on the edge of my property that I've left and I'm sure some 'thoughtful' person will pull it out for me  >:( They don't transplant so I have no choice at this time but to leave it. 

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Living in Hope

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Re: Low Maintenance Wild Flower Garden
« Reply #4 on: April 21, 2012, 21:40 »
The problem is that natural wild flower meadows generally have low fertility and rely on a pattern of grazing and hay making - growing wild flowers on an allotment is likely to be high maintenance to keep the invasive weeds down. If I ddidn't keep on top of it the wildflower patch in my garden would end up just being nettles, docks, buttercups and dandelions.

What about growing things that are good pollenators but not necessarily native wild flowers, e.g. herbs such as lavender, chives, rosemary, bronze fennel, catmint and throw in things like foxgloves, honesty, wallflowers to give some great flowers as well.



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