Wildflowers

When we moved into our new warehouse, we had a lot of cleared land that was previously weeds and blackberries.  In February, 2003, we planted hundreds of packets of wildflower seeds that we had left over from the previous year.  We simply scattered the seed over a strip of land approximately 30 feet by 200 feet.  Since we were not planning on covering or in any way protecting the seed, we put it on very thick, hoping the birds wouldn't get it all.  In another area, we spread a few packets of seed at the rate we recommend on the packet.  Turns out the birds did not feast on our seeds and the area that we planted thickly was a little crowded, resulting in wildflowers that were a little stunted and spindly, but still beautiful.  The other area and the borders of the main area were spectacular and everchanging. Below is a pictorial chronology of the wildflower field from May through July (and May of the following year).  Most of the pictures were taken on the N edge of the main planted area.  

Yes, there are some common weeds in the field (you'll probably notice buttercup, clover, thistle, weed grasses and blackberries among others) because our mix was simply scattered over an untreated formerly weed-choked field.  You'll also notice that the wildflowers competed quite successfully with the weeds.

May 19th Wildflowers

Wildflowers - June 9th

Wildflowers - June 11th

The first of the wildflowers to bloom were the low-growing Nemophila (Baby-Blue-Eyes).  For a couple of weeks in May we had a field entirely in light-blue. Next, we had a multi-colored landscape with various poppies in shades of red and pink, the white of Babysbreath and the blues and purple of miscellaneous wildflowers and some remaining nemophila.

Here is a closeup from the same general time period as the previous picture, taken in the SE corner of the main strip.

Wildflowers - June 20th

Wildflowers - June 23rd

Wildflowers - July 1st

A couple of weeks later, we still have a mix of colors and varieties. Different areas of the field flower at different times (depending upon shade, moisture, proximity of plants and richness of soil) making for some interesting variations. California poppies liked this area early. Suddenly, we have a mono-colored field again as the Bachelor Buttons come into bloom.

Wildflowers - July 7th

Wildflowers - July 7th

Wildflowers - July 24th

Another example of variations in different parts of the field.  This picture and the next one were taken on the same day.  This area got more morning shade on the E side of the field. When the Godetias came into bloom (early July), the field looked primarily pink.  Note the presence of a few Bachelor Buttons, still. In late July, the Coreopsis took over, giving the field a distinctly yellow cast.  Still a few Bachelor Buttons around.

Wildflowers in May 1 year after planting

Lupines closeup

Wildflowers another view of perennials.

The next 3 photos are of the field in May, 1 year after the initial planting.  Notice that some of the perennials in our mix that didn't flower last year are finally flowering. Closeup of the perennial lupines in full flower.  Note that you can see a few shasta daisies in the background. View of the field facing North.  Even though there are lots of shasta daisies, the field looks primarily purple.

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