Wildflower Meadows

Contract Ecology Ltd are trained specialists in delivering wildflower meadows.

Creating a wildflower meadow will enhance the existing biodiversity of any given site. This, in turn, will support a host of birds, mammals, insects and invertebrates further increasing the biodiversity of the surrounding area.

There are several options for establishing wildflowers; wildflower turf, wildflower earth and wildflower seeding. With overseeding, native plug planting and wildflower translocation offering opportunity for enhancing existing habitats.

We are experienced contractors in all of these options. We will help advise the best approach for your meadow, as well as undertaking any future maintenance requirements.

Wildflower turf

Wildflower turf is effective instantly! It delivers beautiful colour, guaranteed results, low maintenance, biodiversity gain and inspiring designs.

Wildflower turf is the best way to add instant enhancement. It is the quickest way to establish a wildflower meadow and radically cuts timescales to establish new habitat.

Wildflower turf installation

Benefits of wildflower turf:

  • biodiversity – wildflower turf naturally produces a biodiverse habitat, supporting birds, mammals, bees, butterflies and other invertebrate species.
  • aesthetics – Our Wildflower Turf uses native perennial species, which produce a changing palette of colour throughout the seasons. Additionally many species grow to 18 inches high creating a stunning visual impact.
  • low maintenance – The nature of the wildflower meadow requires little maintenance; an autumn cut is all that is needed.

Wildflower turf creates an instantly usable space. It is UK grown and contains 33 UK native wildflower and grass species.

Wildflower turf installationWe also install species rich lawn turf which contains 20 species of wildflowers and 6 species of grass. Specially selected for their low growing character. Perfect for gardens wanting a more regular mowing routine.

Species rich lawn turf and wildflower turf are particularly good options for new build plots. Recently soiled up areas and bare ground will benefit from either option. Both act as a weed blanket and establish before weeds can set seed. Wildflower turf can also be used to stabilise embankments where erosion is likely. And can be used to facilitate biodiversity net gain requirements for new developments.

Wildflower turf creates instant habitat cover at water vole, great crested newt and reptile receptor sites. Providing Immediate species foraging and migratory benefits. No waiting for habitats to develop.

Wildflower turf is available in different mixes to suit varying habitat types and can also be grown to order with your bespoke seed mix. Ask us for details.

RHS Plants for pollinators logoRHS Plants for Pollinators *The RHS Plants for Pollinators mark is only given to plants that support pollinating insects. Find out more at https://www.rhs.org.uk/science/conservation-biodiversity/wildlife/plants-for-pollinators

 

Wildflower Earth

Wildflower Earth is a pre-seeded growing medium which boosts seed germination and establishment of wildflower habitats. It’s a low-cost alternative to wildflower turf. Although it doesn’t offer instant habitat cover, it is more reliable than conventional wildflower seeding methods.

Wildflower earth requires much less ground preparation than turf or traditional wildflower seed. Great for sites where protected species are present. Zero ground cultivation is needed to install wildflower earth so there is zero harm to any wildlife present.

Benefits of Wildflower Earth:

  • A reliable alternative to seeding
  • Great for establishing wildflowers over large areas
  • Great for sites with restricted access for heavy machinery
  • Perfect alternative where soil type restricts conventional seed bed preparation
  • Can be used as base growing medium for local/rare seed harvesting translocations
  • Zero ground disturbance so does not impact terrestrial fauna

Wildflower earth requires much less ground preparation than either wildflower turf or traditional seeding. Existing habitats are sprayed off by our licensed operatives then mown to a short sward prior to applying a thin layer of Wildflower Earth. The product requires a simple watering in dependant on the installation date. We offer Wildflower Earth installation between March and October.

Wildflower seeding

Wildflower seeding can be used to create species rich wildflower meadows from scratch or to enhance existing grasslands. We will source wildflower seed in stock or custom mixes to match soil types or conditions at your site

  • Best for sites with poor quality soil
  • Suitable March to May and again in the autumn
  • Cheapest option for sites already prepped

wildflower seeding

Traditional wildflower seeding requires investment in its establishment. Good ground preparation is essential. Wildflower seed is slower to germinate than most hardy weeds and spot treatment may be necessary to prevent non-target species. We are available for long term management of habitats. Aftercare and maintenance is essential in the early stages of meadow creation.

Options for enhancing existing grassland habitats

Overseeding

Overseeding is a great option for creating a bio-diverse sward in existing grassland habitats. We use overseeding to:

  • Infill damaged or patchy areas
  • Add colour and interest
  • Increase flowering period of existing habitat
  • Rebalance species dominance

Our team have access to a range of implements for overseeding dependant on your site requirements. Including hand casting and broadcast spreader where we will prepare the ground surface before hand by scarification or selective herbicide application. Or we can use a mechanised overseeder for larger areas which drills the seed into the surface for best results.

Wildflower meadow created from seed

Native Wildflower Bulbs and Wildflower Plug Plants

Wildflower bulbs and plug plants are great for increasing biodiversity in grasslands, woodlands and public spaces such as gardens and road verges.

Wildflower bulbs can also be used to enhance wildflower turf. At the time of installation, lay the bulbs on the ground and simply lay the wildflower turf over the top and water in.

Native wildflower bulbs have best availably late August to November. Native wildflower plug plants have best availability between September and April.

Provenance matters! Contract Ecology Ltd only use plug plants which have been grown on from Native UK wild flower seed for best foundations.

Flora translocation

Species-poor swards can be enhanced through to translocation of species-rich turf. Contract Ecology are experienced in translocating both individual plants and whole sod turf. Find out more on our translocation experience here.

See our case studies for sites where we have created wildflower meadows: Hawley Gardens and Widnes WwTW

how can we help you?

We want to help our clients achieve success with their projects. We believe a successful project is one which strikes the right balance between profitable development and biodiversity gain.

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