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Take a Step or Two on the Wild Side

Take a Step or Two on the Wild Side

Mar 18 2014

Spring is the perfect time to start shaking things up for some variety in your yard’s garden beds. Scattering the bold natural colors of wild flowers is one of the easiest ways to do just that. With the right touches, you can make it look as natural as if it was done by Mother Nature herself. Here’s some ideas for adding nature’s wild side to your yard and give it a whole new look this Spring. Strategize, Sow and Grow are three ways to set nature on its course for the ‘completely natural’ look that only comes to pass with careful planning. Wildflowers are known for their hardiness and longevity, making them a favorite in every garden, especially as additions to established gardens with specific designations. Incorporating wild flowers into an already established system is fairly easy. You’ve already done the work to establish your beds and planted a variety of flowers, now just follow these simple steps and watch them grow. Strategize • Pick seed varieties based on the intended location. Are you planting in direct sunlight (more than 6 hours of sun a day) or partial shade? • Wildflowers are most appealing when you have a variety of color throughout your yard since ‘wild’ best describes their color pattern. • Know your soils acidity or alkalinity as well as water retention. • Till and rake up the soil in the area where you want to plant and make sure it is free from debris or old root systems • Be aware of frost dates and regional plant type ratings (ask your local garden nursery for sources) for your area and wait to plant until local traditions dictate. Sow • Scatter the seeds directly on top of the soil. If you need a better visual to see where you’ve sown, mix with sand, roughly a ten to one mixture. Pick up the correct sand variety from your local nursery. • Depending on the area, you can choose to sow by hand or use a seed spreader for larger areas. • Don’t bury the seeds, but lightly compress them into the soil Grow • Water your seeds! Keep the soil moist until you have several inches of growth amongst your plants. Be careful not to over soak the soil. Once established, the normal watering system for neighboring plants will suffice. • As the flowers become hardier, look for common weeds to pull out. After the wild flowers are established, they will take over but when the beds are new it is important to keep weeds under control. So while you have a touch of spring fever and want to sow your wild oats (or flowers in this case), put your new found energy into your garden for a longer lasting effect as the antics of spring turn into the lazy days of summer.

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