2013 Is The Year of the Wildflower

Posted: November 7, 2013

Sow true seeds, with WILD abandon.

If you are wild about wildflowers then this is your year. The National Garden Bureau has designated 2013 as the Year of the Wildflower!

Echinacea, Rudbekia, Bees

‘Wildflower’ is a catch all phrase that can mean many things.  It could mean any flower that has naturally reseeded itself and grows without the aid of a nurturing human.  It could be a flower native to North America prior to European settlement. Our working definition is a native flowering plant that occurs both naturally and in garden cultivation.

Wildflowers lend a wistful airy feel to gardens and attract lots of wildlife. Since wildflowers have co-evolved with many bird and insect species they are a wonderful source of nectar for bees and pollinators, as well as a food source for our native songbirds.

Wildflowers for beginner gardeners? – YES!

  • Wildflowers are often tough; they’ve learned to take care of themselves in the wild!
  • Wildflowers often have extensive root systems that prevent erosion.
  • Wildflowers require less nutrient inputs and are more drought resistant than many other flowers.
  • Wildflowers look beautiful and attract wildlife to your garden!

Wildflowers with Sow True Seed

Mixes: if the plight of bees is close to your heart then look no further than our Bee Feed Mixwhich includes many wildflowers (though not exclusively) such as flax, bergamot and New England aster.

Our South East Native Mix is an exclusively native selection of some of our showiest wildflowers, such as Black Eyed Susans, Phlox, Purple Coneflower (Echinacea sp.) and Butterfly Milkweed. This mix can be seeded in late fall after a hard frost for germination next spring – THAT’S NOW!

We have lots of other flower mix options suited to naturalizing, wildlife enhancement and meadow development.

Individually: bee balm, columbine, and sunflowers are garden standards, but we have so many more, including powerhouses like Butterfly Milkweed, coreopsis, echinacea or gaillardia. Planting these species in large clumps encourages wildlife to visit and provides visual continuity. Since so many of these species attract pollinators they also attract beneficial insects. Beneficial insects can benefit all of your garden plants. but particularly vegetable gardens where they help control pests.

We can all agree that more wildflowers in the world could never be a bad thing, so go wild and plant some wildflowers this fall or prepare your soil for a sweeping meadow next spring. You won’t regret it!

Written by Sow True Seed blogger Megan Schneider.

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