En EspaŅol
Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Mr. Smarty Plants - Maintenance of a wildflower garden in Covington, GA

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

Wednesday - July 28, 2010

From: Covington, GA
Region: Southeast
Topic: Wildflowers
Title: Maintenance of a wildflower garden in Covington, GA
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have a small wildflower meadow in my backyard in southern Newton County, Georgia. The area has a 17% slope and is surrounded by mixed a stand of hard and soft woods. This year the spring and early summer flowers looked great, but now that the black-eyed susan are going to seed, weeds and small trees are taking over. Can I do a late summer mowing to get rid of the weeds? Should I sow additional wildflower seeds if I do mow? Any help would be appreciated.

ANSWER:

First, read our How-To Article Meadow Gardening. It really answers all your questions. You will absolutely have to be vigilant about woody plants and weeds moving into a wildflower meadow, or they will take over, and you will have larger plants and trees shading out your wildflowers. When the plants you are trying to preserve have seeded, you can certainly mow. You can mow again in the late Winter when the seedlings are low, setting your mower at a higher cutting distance. Whether or not you sow more seeds is entirely up to you, perhaps doing so to add diversity to your selection of wildflowers or just to ensure having the ones you like best. It will become self-perpetuating if, and only if, you mow and remove (without using herbicides) those plants and trees that don't belong. 

 

More Wildflowers Questions

Smarty Plants on Rain-lily
April 12, 2005 - What is the common lily (I think) that grows in the ditches and especially this year because of all the rain. The flower is trumpet shaped and has red stripes in the petals? Very common everywhere t...
view the full question and answer

List of native perennial Texas flowers
March 13, 2006 - Good day, I am searching for a list of native Texas flowers (preferably perennials) for a flower garden. Thank you.
view the full question and answer

Earliest spring wildflower from Richardson TX
September 29, 2009 - What spring wildflower is consistently among the first to bloom in North Texas?"
view the full question and answer

Seed regrowth through mulch
September 06, 2007 - Hi Mr. Smarty Plants: I have planted a perennial and wildflower garden and would like to put mulch down to control the weeds and retain moisture. Will the plants that drop their seeds be able to re- ...
view the full question and answer

How to Propagate Mexican Bush Sage in Marble Falls, Texas
September 14, 2010 - I need advice on when, how to separate Mexican bush sage. Ours is happy and HUGE but is now sprouting from the roots at the base. Since we've been so successful with this plant, we want to divide it...
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
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center