CatNippy81
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Wildflower bed

I have an 25x25 ft space I used for my garden. But I will not have time this summer so I want to do a wildflower bed. I am looking at the 1lb bag of Midwest mix at American Meadows. It will consist of 14 annual and 14 perennials and biennial types. Any of you have experience using seeds from American Meadows?
Are there any other flowers that might not come in a wildflower mix that you would recommend? I really want it to be full of color.
Zone 5b

valley
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Re: Wildflower bed

Hi, 25' X 25' is a pretty good area. You won't have time?
It will take some of your time, that you don't have, to prepare the ground, even for wildflower seeds. What is in or on the ground now, grass, weeds or a former flower bed? The results from: Just broadcasting seeds with no prep will be, I think, very disappointing.

Let us know or see what the area is like now. Good luck, hope to hear more from you.

Richard

CatNippy81
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Location: Michigan

Re: Wildflower bed

The garden area is mostly clear. I cleared it out last fall after the first frost. I will till in some sand in the spring to help with drainage since the ground is a little low and soil is already heavy.

I won't have time to pick veggies, weed and water this summer. Prepping the garden in the spring should not be an issue.
Zone 5b

Susan W
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Re: Wildflower bed

If you are giving this area a break from the veggies for just one season, would go with easy annuals. Perennials and wildflowers often take a year to bloom. My suggestions include zinnias, sunflowers, marigolds, cosmos. For sunflowers get 2 -3 varieties including the tall single head, and a branching one with smaller flowers that bloom over longer time. There are several varieties of zinnias, as well as marigolds. Bachelor buttons good for early bloom. Just a few packs of seeds off the seed rack at box store or garden center will keep you in bloom!
Have fun!
Susan

valley
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Re: Wildflower bed

What you describe doing sounds like it will work.
Wifey, planted wild flowers here before we married, that was about 20yrs ago. Some still survive, coming up every spring.

Like to see the results.

Richard

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applestar
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Re: Wildflower bed

What kind of rainfall can you expect? If this was meant to be veg garden, is it a well draining rich loam site?

If you look at the Prairie Moon Wildflower Seed website, they provide detailed growing conditions for each plant based on sun, shade, dry, intermediate, bog, etc. I've studied their catalog and website but have only purchased individual seed packets once or twice (with excellent results). If I remember correctly, they have prepared mixes for different growing area as well as for desired height of plants and I think they offer custom mixes as well.

You might also consider growing covercrops and green manure intended to enrich your garden soil instead.
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CatNippy81
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Location: Michigan

Re: Wildflower bed

It gets pretty mucky in the spring. Very dark heavy soil and we get a good amount of rain in the spring. I hope adding sand and maybe some peat moss will help with drainage. I plan on fixing it the beginning of April.
Zone 5b

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applestar
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Re: Wildflower bed

Sounds like you would NOT want arid prairie type wildflowers. Is it full sun or is it shaded at times by trees or buildings?

Key to care-free garden is to choose plants that match the existing condition of the location and predicting the amount of extra work you intend/are able to do.

Did you see this page on the prairie moon website?
:arrow: https://www.prairiemoon.com/choosing.php?fclassid=1

If the "Midwest mix at American Meadows" closely matches the result after plugging in your data, then no doubt that seed mix will work fine (assuming it contains decent ratio of fillers vs. desirables).

Here' prairie moon's seed mix page. (I'm not saying buy from them -- just that I think they provide a lot of information to base your research on :wink: )
:arrow: https://www.prairiemoon.com/seed-mixes/
Learning never ends because we can share what we've learned. And in sharing our collective experiences, we gain deeper understanding of what we learned.

CatNippy81
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Location: Michigan

Re: Wildflower bed

It is shaded until about 9:40/10 am.
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Susan W
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Re: Wildflower bed

Let's go back to the situation. Is this one season or more than one? Annuals tend to bloom for longer periods of time, thus more color. Perennials bloom 6 -8 weeks average. For that need some planning to get color from beginning to end, not counting that moist perennials don't bloom or not much the 1st season.

You have a large area to cover. Perhaps if time and situation short this season, just plant up about 1/2 in some pretty annuals. Cover the other 1/2 with straw or other mulch and let it rest until next year.
Have fun!
Susan

CatNippy81
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Re: Wildflower bed

I think I am done growing veggies. Last summer I did a small flower bed under my maple tree and enjoyed so much more than my vegetable garden. I will have some herbs, but that's about it.
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applestar
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Re: Wildflower bed

Just as an idea, if you don't want an annual veg garden, have you thought about planting perennial vegs like asparagus, rhubarb, fruit trees or berry (raspberry, blackberry, blueberry, strawberry) patch?

You could also consider flowering trees, shrubs, arbor with vines, and butterfly/hummingbird garden. Add benches and water feature (butterfly puddle, birdbath, container fountain/waterfall, pond)
Learning never ends because we can share what we've learned. And in sharing our collective experiences, we gain deeper understanding of what we learned.

CatNippy81
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Location: Michigan

Re: Wildflower bed

I would like some blueberry. We have A LOT of raspberry/blackberry. We actually pulled some up. We have thought about some cherry trees and a westeria tree. I have almost an acre to work with and I think I could make it a really nice garden over time.
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applestar
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Re: Wildflower bed

Ooh! You have space! :D How about some nut trees too?
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CatNippy81
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Location: Michigan

Re: Wildflower bed

applestar wrote:Ooh! You have space! :D How about some nut trees too?
I have a nut tree.It's a walnut tree and we cut a lot of it down last summer but it just won't die :cry:
I have an L shaped property and the west side "about 300ft" is up against the schools bus barn fence and the tree has been growing into the fence and damaging pretty bad. It's basically an over grown stump that previous owner also tried to kill. It's the fastest growing thing in my yard :|
Zone 5b

CatNippy81
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Posts: 47
Joined: Sun Apr 22, 2012 1:27 pm
Location: Michigan

Re: Wildflower bed

It was such a nice day out today that I cleaned out and basically hand tilled my garden
today;-) I had a few bags of peat moss in the shed and tossed it in the garden. Honestly, it looks like more than enough, but maybe I just need to mix it in more. It really made the soil light so I hope that does the trick for my clay rich soil. Should I add perlite to the soil or test it first?
Zone 5b



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