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Wildflower Turf Maintenance

Once established the wildflower turf requires very little maintenance, however, there is one important task to carry out each autumn: to cut the plants and remove these cuttings. This can be done by strimming and raking or using a mower and collecting the cuttings. Make sure these tools are sharp and try to minimise trafficking. Cutting the plants back to 2 to 3 inches (50 to 75mm) in length is a vital part of their lifecycle and ensures that re-growth will continue year on year. This should be carried out in the autumn, ideally after the plants have set and shed their seed. Not only does this tidy up the area for the winter but it stops the summer growth from covering the growing plant in a layer of rotting plant material. An open sward over the winter ensures healthy, disease free plants which can benefit from what light is available to them during these months. As the spring approaches the wildflowers and grasses are in the perfect position to develop flowers and seed heads quickly to repeat their perennial cycle thus guaranteeing a wildflower meadow year after year. There may need to be an extra cut in early spring to knock back any dominant species. Doing this will allow the others to come through and compete to create a more uniformed appearance.