Mow and care for flower meadows

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Flower meadows are an asset to any garden and an important contribution to insect repellent. The blooming wildflowers attract many insects, such as bees, hoverflies, butterflies and lacewings, and provide them with their nectar and pollen an important food source. Butterflies also find the suitable forage plants for their caterpillars on flower meadows. The wild carrot serves, for example, as the offspring of the swallowtail, one of the most magnificent native butterflies, as food. However, to ensure that the flowers of the flower meadow in the garden last for years, they must be properly mowed and cared for.

Do not fertilize or water flowering meadows

The most species-rich flower meadows grow on dry, nutrient-poor locations - therefore the natural role models are also referred to as poor meadows or nutrient-poor grasslands. The lack of water and nutrients gives the annual or perennial wildflowers and perennials a competitive edge over most grasses. As soon as you disturb this balance through additional irrigation or fertilization, over time more and more grasses in your flower meadow will spread and the wildflowers slowly but surely push back. At "fat" locations, this process of maceration even takes place without any further intervention by the gardener - species-rich flower meadows only last a few years and the flowering of flowers decreases from the first year onwards.

Meadow meadows mow once or twice a year

In contrast to the lawn, which is cut every week by a lawnmower, you only have to mow your flower meadow once or twice a year. This is also the most important care measure: it ensures that short-lived species live longer and at the same time promotes the self-sowing of annual flowers. The mowing is not only important for the rejuvenation of the stock - it also ensures a continuous depletion of nutrients, as long as the clippings are thoroughly removed from the surface.

The optimal mowing date for the flower meadow

The specialist literature recommends mowing flower meadows between mid-July and the end of August. Who adheres to this rough recommendation, does not do anything wrong. But it does not hurt to take a closer look before mowing to find the optimal time. This is achieved when the seeds of annual flowers such as poppy or Kornrade already dried and thus mature, since they can only reproduce by self-seed. From the end of September to the end of October, you can mow your flower meadow again. However, this mowing is used solely for "leaning" of the soil and should prevent that from the dead plant remains too much humus forms on the surface.

From scythe to meadow mower: the ideal mower

Meadow flower meadow with scythe

Smaller flower meadows are best mowed with a scythe, even if you have to practice a bit until you master the device safely

Mowing a flower meadow with the scythe is a traditional and very environmentally friendly method. However, it also requires some practice and needs especially with larger flowering meadows their time. Most hobby gardeners therefore resort to motorized equipment for mowing their flower meadows. For smaller areas, a brushcutter with battery, electric or gasoline engine is enough. Anyone who has to mow a larger flower meadow is well served by a so-called meadow mower. The devices are very powerful and can cope well with higher growth. A classic lawnmower, however, capitulates sooner or later, as the resulting Schnittgutmengen are just too big. They clog the ejection within a very short time or even block the knife.

Dispose of clippings from flower meadows

Who wants to optimally use the clippings of his flower meadow, should make hay from it. It is very rich in minerals and is suitable as feed for rabbits and guinea pigs, but is also ideal for horses and cattle. Just let it dry after mowing on the flower field and apply it a few times with the rake. In the process, many seeds dissolve out of the fruit stalks, so that plenty of young flowers are taken care of. Then it is thoroughly removed from the surface and stored in a dry place.
For composting or mulching in the garden, the clippings are only partially suitable - it contains a lot of seeds, which then hit an undesirable place. Instead, you should bring it to the green waste landfill site - where composting takes place at high temperatures, usually killing the seeds.

Video Board: Gardening w Wildflowers - How to plant and maintain a wildflower meadow - North American Wildflowers.

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