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Seed Stratification Codes

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Wooden Surface

Meadow Mix

Most native seeds need winter in order to unlock germination but we've put together a native wildflower meadow mix that is ready to sow any time of the year!

Details:

Thank you for sowing native seeds. For sowing on a this larger scale we have some tips and  advice to make sure your project is successful.

 

We’ve done the first step of working to make this successful: we’ve selected a variety of plants to fill many niches. A balanced mix of species to cover different niches: heights, root systems, seasons, and time.

 

Native seeds, for the most part, need to be sown in the fall so that they can go through winter’s freezing and thawing. This allows for their germination in the spring. If you can’t use the seeds this year, you can store them in the fridge to keep them fresh (but note this is not equivalent to winter for seeds unless you put them in a plastic bag  with a damp substrate such as vermiculite.)

 

Preparation

We urge you not to till the soil of where you are sowing unless your soil is usually compacted. Tilling is detrimental to soil structure and also brings up weed seeds. Ideally you will sow these seeds into mostly empty soil, but that is often not realistic. Having at least 50% soil exposed is recommended for successful germination. This can be done through weeding, or, with extra preparation, through solarization (temporarily laying plastic down) and then raking. Google  “solarization” for more information.

Sowing your Seeds

Your seeds are packaged in three parts: (A) main package with larger seeds, (B) seeds with inoculant*, (C) smaller seeds

 

1) Mix (A) and (B) with some sort of substrate to make sowing easier. We recommend compost** or any potting soil. Mix well and toss where you want your seeds. (A) and (B) seeds are larger and the substrate helps to equally distribute and also acts as some covering for these seeds. If you only use a small amount of substrate you should add a very thin layer of soil on top (1/8” deep max) after you sow them.

2) Smaller seeds (C) need to be surface sown, not covered by soil at all. Sprinkle on top of the sown area. If you prefer to use a substrate to help distribute these don’t use soil but use sand instead. This will help keep the seeds in place but the sand will allow the necessary light through. 3) Pat down your seeds for contact and best germination. This can be done with feet or with the back of a shovel for example, even light watering is helpful.

 

Upkeep

Your seeds should begin to germinate in the spring. Water*** as they are emerging, when necessary. It may be hard to tell what is a weed and what was sown. Give it time and you’ll start to see what will need to be weeded. If sowing a very large area you may need to mow. This keeps woody species at bay and if you sow in the spring you will favor new seedlings instead of more established plants. Just always keep the mower height over the tallest new seedlings. 

 

Notes

*these seeds are nitrogen fixers and the inoculant (nitrogen-fixing bacteria) enters the root, forming

   root nodules that fix nitrogen.

**no need to compost the area or improve the soil as that will favor weed seeds.

***Don’t water this fall, in the spring don’t over water or you will favor weed seeds.

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