Many wildflowers will not grow in grass, needing disturbed soil to flourish. Poppies, cornflowers and corn marigolds are examples of these. They are mainly annuals and can be grown from seed in pots and then transplanted or sown directly from seed. Once established they will self sow and then reappear every year. A border can be devoted to them or they can be mixed into a general border.
What about woodland plants? There are a number of woodland species that make very attractive planting in shady areas, perhaps under shrubs or trees or perhaps on the sunless side of a house or fence. Most woodland flowers tend to grow in deciduous woods and put in an appearance in the early spring before the trees come into leaf.
This is so that they get enough sun and rain to grow and develop. Primroses, wood anemones and bluebells are good examples of these. It is not necessary to have a wood in order to grow them, they will be quite happy growing under deciduous shrubs and a good use of space.
Can we use water plants? These can be a bit more problematic in that many native water or bog plants can be rather rampant and tend to take over. They need good management to keep them under control. The conditions that these plants enjoy are also very conducive to weeds, so be prepared for regular weeding. They can be grown in the same way as any other water or bog loving plants.
The pretty Anemone nemorosa is an easy, non invasive plant to grow. Plant it under shrubs or under a hedgerow. Also, non invasive grasses are ideal for wildflower gardens. Chrysanthemum segetum is one of many cornfield flowers that are ideal for wildflower beds. Although normally considered a border plant, Camassia makes an excellent plant for the meadow garden. Ferns make good plants for shady areas of wildflower garden. In wetter areas the royal fern, Osmunda regalis, is ideal.
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