Friday, 28 March 2014

Wildflower meadow in miniature

Since the old greenhouse bit the dust at the beginning of last year we have had a small part of he the top area of the garden that we've done nothing with so far. The greenhouse had stood there for over 20 years, and so it didn't owe us anything when it did finally succumb to the great greenhouse abode above. So earlier this year I started thinking hard about what to do with this area. Should I use it for growing more fruit, or turn it over to a small vegetable garden. In the end practicalities had a hand in the decision. At the moment life is very busy for a variety of reasons, and I've never been very successful in growing vegetables, so armed with a desire to increase the number and variety of  wildlife in he the garden I decided to try for a wildlife meadow in miniature. And miniature it will be!
The next stage was a little research on how to prepare the area. Apparently it is important that the area should not have been fertilised for a while so that the wildflowers  are given a chance, and not taken over by other invasive plants. Well, this is no problem. Surely 20 odd years of having a green house on top of the area should qualify as not having been fertilised recently.

The before picture!

Next, where could I get seeds. Well as it turns out there are plenty of suppliers out there. With a bewildering variety of see mixtures. So armed with ignorance I opted for a a packet of "BSB 100%: Bees and Butterfly Wildflowers" from Boston Seeds. This is a mixture of annuals and perennials, so at least there should some flowers this year, and then a hater variety incorporating annuals and perennials next year. Well that's the plan.

So a couple of weeks ago I decided to get on with it.  The area had already dug the area over at the end of last year, and I just gave it a quick rake before giving the seeds a good mix (I do read instructions!) and sowed the seeds as directed.

Now I have to be patient and wait and hope it will start to look a little like this - not my photo but from Boston Seeds website.



I'm getting quite excited now after posting this.

This has all come at a time when Buglife have just launched a new campaign called "Get Britain Buzzing". This includes a 7 point manifesto to reverse the decline in pollinators and available wild flowers in the UK. See for yourself at http://www.buglife.org.uk/campaigns-and-our-work/campaigns/get-britain-buzzing

The 7 points are:

  1. All pollinators valued for the service that they provide
  2. Our pollinator populations properly monitored and understood
  3. Pesticide use that harms pollinators reduced
  4. Wildflower rich landscapes restored - B-Lines established
  5. Declines in rare and threatened pollinator species reversed
  6. Places for pollinators planned around people
  7. Wild pollinators protected from imported parasites and diseases
- See more at: http://www.buglife.org.uk/campaigns-and-our-work/campaigns/get-britain-buzzing#sthash.t5n8sbMx.dpuf