The Great Lakes region is vast and diverse, but it is united by hot, humid summers and cold, snowy winters. Many native North American wildflower species can be found throughout the whole region, but we have selected these species for their ease, suitability, and charm. This collection includes annuals, biennials, and perennials that are both cold hardy and drought tolerant. They should return for years to come once established. The range of colours is huge, as are the number of native insects that will come to feed on them. Any area with limited biodiversity will be improved by the Great Lakes Wildflower Blend.
Click here to learn more about Wildflowers & RegionalityBlend Ingredients.
Unless otherwise stated, all the wildflower mixes will contain perennials, annuals, and biennials. Seeds must come into contact with the soil in order to germinate. Do not bury seeds more than 2-3 times their thickness. Continue reading below for some other tips on how to grow wildflowers from seed.
Season & Zone
Exposure: Full sun to partial shade, depending on the blend
Try to direct sow wildflower seeds during the period two weeks before, and eight weeks after, your last average frost date. Sowing when there is some risk of minor frost may improve germination. Wildflower seeds can also be sown in the autumn, but a certain percentage of seeds to may be lost to water, birds, and animals. To make the most of the annual species, direct sow in early spring.
Site Selection: If there are already no plants (including weeds) growing in the planting site, there may be a problem with the soil. Possible issues may be soil fertility, lack of drainage, or the need for soil amendments to improve texture. In such spots (eg, beneath a cedar tree), few plants will thrive, including wildflowers.
Site Preparation: Remove as much existing vegetation as possible through pulling or tilling under in order to minimize competition. Loosen the soil by scraping, raking, or tilling. Wildflower blends will not usually take if planted into existing lawn because the thatch prevents their contact with soil.
Seed Application: In small areas, seeds can be scattered by hand. In larger areas, you may want to employ a lawn spreader or some other mechanical means. We recommend adding 1-2 parts clean, dry sand to 1 part wildflower seeds which will help the seeds spread evenly. Do not use beach sand, as it usually contains salt. It may be wise to spread most of the seed, but to save some for filling in bald spots at a later date. Seeds must come into contact with the soil in order to germinate. Do not bury seeds more than 2-3 times their thickness.
Planting rates: Aim for a planting density of 70 seeds per square foot. 90g of seeds will cover 1,000 ft². Use 4kg per acre. 500g covers about 5,500 ft². If seeding an area where site preparation and weeding are not possible, double this rate.
Keep the seeded area as evenly moist as possible to help the seeds germinate and the young seedlings become established. Weeds need to be kept under control. Once they are growing, most mixes will not require additional water except in long periods of hot, dry weather. All of our mixes should re-grow for several years, but will eventually benefit from re-seeding. In late summer, many of the components will produce seed heads that can be harvested and replanted the following spring.