May
31

I like this positive news item

Tailored strips of wildflowers allow pest-eating insects to spread throughout crop fields, reducing the need for pesticides. We meet the team behind the trial that puts flower power at the fore…read more by clicking on the piece below:

Out with pesticides, in with wildflowers

Posted in Uncategorized |
Mar
30

Slug and snail deterrents


I found the following company’s unique plant pest deterrent products of particular interest due to their safe ingredients, beneficial side-effects on the plants and non-harmful effects on the target pest. The products are plant protectors and not pesticides. I have used their G2 formula on my plant plugs and mature plants and found them effective against slugs and snails; repeat treatment I found beneficial as the plant grows and produces new leaves and also after periods of rain.

They also do a G1 formula to protect plants against rabbits which has been used in agricultural situations as well as gardens, I am yet to try this one as I tend to use rabbit netting to fence out my wild flower areas if rabbits are present, but I would be interested to hear from customers who have used their G1 product.
Click here to visit their website.

Posted in Uncategorized |
Jul
22

I will be back at BBC Countryfile Live again this August

I will be back at the BBC Countryfile Live Show at Blenheim Palace from Aug 3rd till 6th (Thursday till Sunday), come and see me at stand B03 along Craven Avenue in the garden area.

Posted in Uncategorized |
Dec
09

Wild Orchids

 

At this time of year many people are thinking about planting my wild flower bulbs for the early spring however I thought it is worth mentioning that our wild Orchids are not dissimilar in their development, forming an underground tuber or rhizome first, before putting up a flower spike. My selection of wild Orchid seed can be sown at any time as the start of their development all happens beneath the ground, not reliant on sunlight at this stage, they are one of the few plants whose seed can be sown straight onto the soil surface among the grass of a lawn or field (I have written the instructions on the seed packet); they do not require bare ground prior to seeding which is required for the wild flower seed mixes.

Early Spider Orchids a secret of the south downs

 

Green-winged Orchids come in various colours

 

More Green-winged Orchids …aren’t they gorgeous!

             You can purchase my various Orchid seeds on the ‘Rarities page’

Common Spotted Orchids in flower

Common Spotted Orchids in flower

Posted in Uncategorized, Wild flowers up close |
Nov
30

Seeds for Bach Flower Remedy plants, Scleranthus, Mustard etc.

I have been impressed by the large number of people contacting me for seeds of plants used in Bach Flower Remedies, in response to this I have done my best to collect as many species seeds as I can including Autumn Gentian, Scleranthus, Centaury, Common Rock-rose, Heather, Wild Mustard, all of which you can see for sale on my uncommon species page which you can view by clicking here. I can also supply other wild seeds by request such as Gorse and Broom etc, just drop me an email to enquire by clicking here.

Autumn Gentian

Autumn Gentian photo by Colin Reader

Posted in Uncategorized |
Jul
28

See me at the BBC Countryfile Live Show

I will be at the BBC Countryfile Live Show at Blenheim Palace from Aug 4th till 7th (Thursday till Sunday), come and see me at stand J107 in the garden area near the main arena.

Visit 'Wild Flower Lawns and Meadows' at the Show

Visit ‘Wild Flower Lawns and Meadows’ at the Show

Posted in Uncategorized |
Jul
26

Enhancing a grassy field using Yellow Rattle seed

Part of my work is to advise on wild flower meadow creation and management, sometimes I carry out the work too with my colleague. Here is a field we sowed with Yellow Rattle seed in 2011 to reduce the grass vigour and open up the sward and then we added wild flower seeds.

Field in its original grassy state

Field in its original state 2011

The results five years later.

The results five years later in 2016

Once Yellow Rattle was established in one part of the large field we collected its seed with our ‘flail collector mower’ and dropped and spread the cuttings in other parts which needed more Yellow Rattle and we did the same with seed from wild flowers which had established elsewhere within the field.

This is a longer process to reach the end result compared to creating a wild flower meadow anew from bare ground whereby full colour can be achieved within a year but on the right sites it is very achievable and benefits from no use of any chemicals which often need to be employed when creating a meadow from scratch where weeds are potentially a big issue when bare ground is created. I find this enhancement method is better where wild rabbits are a threat which would otherwise destroy a newly germinating meadow coming up from bare ground.

An area of the field still requiring Yellow Rattle colonisation in 2015

An area of the field still requiring Yellow Rattle colonisation in 2015

 

Preparing the area to receive the seed

Preparing the area to receive the seed

 

That's how tight I like it cut before spreading on the cuttings containing the seeds

This is how tight I like the grass cut before spreading the cuttings containing the seeds

 

The Yellow Rattle seed rich cuttings being scattered on the required area

The Yellow Rattle seed rich cuttings being scattered on the required area

 

The results of adding the Yellow Rattle seed rich cuttings in late summer 2015, photo taken late July 2016 showing swathes of Yellow Rattle seed heads

The results of adding the Yellow Rattle seed rich cuttings in late summer 2015
photo taken late July 2016 after flowering, showing swathes of dark Yellow Rattle seed heads amongst
the grass which is now less dense

Posted in Uncategorized |
Oct
17

Bulbs of individual wild flower species for sale

I now have bulbs of individual wild flower species for sale in addition to my mixed species collections.

Bulbs are great if you wish for quick flowering in woodland and shaded areas, as they reach flowering quicker than seed, which is slower to establish in such situations. They can also be used in open areas just as well. In fact the fragrant Wild Tulip flowers better in the open than under shade.

I also sell rhizomes of Wood Anemone for creating that woodland carpet of white.

Below you will see photos of each of the eleven bulb species I have available. To visit my product page to purchase any click here.

Our native Wood Anemone

A white carpet of Wood Anemones in April

A yellow carpet of native Lesser Celandines in April

Bulbs are easy to handle and will come with simple planting instructions. To view my bulb planting instruction sheet click here. Note that many bulbs need to settle in once planted and so not all will flower in their first year but all should from their second year. They will multiply in number each year too :).

English Bluebells

Wild Tulip

Snakes Head Fritillary

Native Wild Daffodils

Wild Garlic

Native Wild Garlic

Wild Cyclamen

The fragrant Lily Of The Valley

Snowdrops

Crocus

Posted in Uncategorized |
Sep
22

Artificial Grass – Perfect Turf

Although wild flower areas are well provided for around my office, the main path to my doors is not a mown strip through wild flower grassland, it is artificial grass. This may come as a surprise to some, but artificial grass has come a long way since its early days. I like it because it drains well and does not get muddy after rains or icy in the winter. It looks great, like a neatly mown lawn and is far nicer and softer than concrete or paving slabs. It is also maintenance free.

So many people have asked about my artificial grass that I have now added it to the products for sale on my website. I sell two types of artificial grass because these are the two I like the best out of many I have tested. To see them click here.

Posted in Uncategorized |
Jun
10

Debbie and Mark take the podium

For a change I am lending my blog page to friend and her colleague, two garden designers who need a platform to present their findings from a very worthy research project on the importance of gardens in care homes and especially dementia care homes. A book and guidance tool is being written which is being self-financed and they are looking for support with this. Many of us have known elderly friends or relatives living with this distressing condition and it is so uplifting to see a person living with dementia re-connect with their surroundings and engage again in the here and now, which is why the book is being written, but I will leave the rest to Debbie and Mark so for a quick and interesting read click here to read their article in ‘Living Life ‘ magazine (you may need to right click your mouse and click ‘rotate clockwise’ as the magazine appears on its side when I view it).

Next I suggest you have a look at this background article about their project and watch their brief video by clicking here and to see how we can support them.

Debbie and Mark....caring souls

Posted in Uncategorized |