Wildflower Maintenance – Diary of a Rocket Gardener

What a relief it has been to get some sunshine and dry weather finally! I’ve been trying to get out in the garden at every opportunity to make the most of it and get things ship-shape ready for spring. Last week I tended to the herb beds, this week I was busy with the wildflower patch. It’s not a huge area, probably 1m x 2m long at the most, and it didn’t take long to get on top of things.

Job 1: Pull up the old, dry stems and seed heads (I shook the seed heads over the wildflower patch for a final sprinkle of new seeds!)

Job 2: Pull out any obvious weeds – there are plenty of plants growing, so this makes it a bit difficult to identify weeds vs wildflowers. I went for an easy option and simply pulled out the weeds that I instantly recognise that are common to my garden – nettles, brambles, docks, and goose grass are the common offenders here! I wouldn’t recommend being too thorough in this stage!

Job 3: Add a bit of fertiliser (but only if they’re not competing with grasses) – I sprinkled in a little wormcast fertiliser to add nutrients to the soil. They do say that wildflowers are better in poor soils, but since my wildflowers are planted into bare soil and do not need to compete with grass, I understand that this is not an issue, and that the nutrients will help the flowers. I’d say the same would be true if you are growing in pots – but DON’T feed them if they are competing with grass and other weeds!

Job 4: I pruned off quite a few sad looking leaves – it’s probably not 100% necessary, and I certainly wouldn’t do this on a larger patch, but it did make me feel like I’d achieved!

Job 5: If I were growing wildflowers in grass, now would be the time that I cut the grass for the season, because once the flowers get going the grass will remain uncut until autumn after they’ve finished flowering. Lucky for me I don’t have to do this, but I thought I’d mention it for those that are growing their wildflowers in amongst grass.