En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Friday - September 16, 2005

From: Dallas, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Wildflowers
Title: Smarty Plants on Wildflower Meadow Gardening
Answered by: Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

Good morning! I want to overseed a buffalo lawn that has been down for about a year with a wildflower mix, how would you recommend that we prepare the site.

ANSWER:

First, I recommend reading our article on Wildflower Meadow Gardening. You may also find useful information in other articles in the Native Plant Information Network Clearinghouse Native Plant Library.

The most important concept to apply when sowing seeds is the essential truth of good soil contact. Since your lawn has been in for a year, there is bound to be quite a bit of grass mulch covering the surface of the soil. Try to get as much of that up as is reasonable. Sow your seed by whatever method you find most effective and then go over the seeded area with a leaf rake -- two or three times is better. The idea here is to get those seeds down onto or slightly into the soil. If no rain occurs in the first few days after sowing, the seeds should be watered in well. Do not mow your buffalo grass in late summer or fall.

Wildflower seed germination is often sporadic and subject to influences outside our control -- weather, insects, disease, etc. Further, a newly sown wildflower meadow typically takes three to five years to become well-established. Sometimes it helps to know this to adjust expectations to reality.
 

More Wildflowers Questions

Planting bluebonnets
April 20, 2008 - How long do bluebonnet seeds take to mature, and when is the earliest in their development they can be harvested? When can they be scattered?
view the full question and answer

When is best time to plant seeds of Texas Nightshade in San Antonio, TX?
September 20, 2014 - I need to know the time to plant seeds of Texas Nightshade. Can I plant them now ( August ), or wait till fall or spring?
view the full question and answer

Arizona centaury near Lost Maples from Austin
November 05, 2012 - I found a clump of Arizona centaury growing/blooming beside a road near Lost Maples State Nat. Area in the Texas hill country last week. Centaurium calycosum is the scientific name. I have 2 questio...
view the full question and answer

Wildflower to succeed bluebonnets
April 08, 2008 - I am looking for a "partner" plant for bluebonnets? What perennial plant doesn't really "appear" until after April? What I want is a sea of bluebonnets in March and April but when they go dorm...
view the full question and answer

More on bluebonnets
March 23, 2005 - When (month and week) do you think the "peak of bluebonnet blooming" will be this year in the Austin, Fredericksbug, and Llano, Texas area?
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center