Meadows ripple with a life of their own, an ebb and flow of flowers that change with the light, time of day and seasons. An annual wildflower meadow can easily be adapted to a large or small garden.

The approach to establishing an annual meadow is totally different to a perennial one. Flowering starts in summer and continues into autumn before everything is cut back, and the area left fallow for the winter. Then, in spring, the seed is sown over the bare soil, and flowering starts within a matter of weeks.

Annual wildflower meadow

So, if you would like to learn how to grow a wildflower meadow then we have a simple step-by-step guide that may help you.

4 simple steps for growing an annual wildflower meadow


Annual wildflower meadow

Visit Yeo Valley Organic Gardens at Holt Farm to see examples

1. Start preparing the ground within a year of sowing. Remove persistent weeds, cultivate the ground and keep weeds under control.

2. The following April or May sow on bare soil free of weeds. Firm the ground and rake as you would sow a lawn. Create lines of shallow drills in the soil before broadcasting half the seed evenly, mixing with fine sawdust or silver sand first to make it easier to see on the ground. Firm the ground again, before scattering the remaining seed.

3. Rake in lightly and water thoroughly. If birds are a problem, be prepared to protect the seed with netting.

4. Depending on the mix, meadows can look lovely well into autumn. Cut the meadow back, encouraging seeds to fall on the earth. Remove all plant matter to reduce fertility, ideally cultivating the ground before leaving fallow over the winter. Repeat the process each year.