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Monday - May 11, 2015

From: Edmond, OK
Region: Southwest
Topic: Non-Natives, Wildflowers
Title: Thinning and culling wildflower seed mix plants
Answered by: Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

Wildflower garden in central Oklahoma I sowed a (mostly) native wildflower mixture in early November here in my Zone 7A Edmond, OK garden. To my surprise, many of the seeds (I'm guessing annuals) germinated over the winter. They survived freezes and snows, and are now thriving in the warm spring days. No flowers yet, but the plants are definitely coming on strong. So I have two questions: 1. The wildflower seedlings are very thick in a few spots. Should I thin them out? Mow them? Let them be? I'm worried they are going to choke out each other and other seeds that are yet to germinate. 2. I was discouraged to find that 5 of the 16 species in the mix I bought from a local company are not native. They are: Cornflower, Corn Poppy, Shasta Daisy, Dames Rocket & Blue Flax. I don't want ANYTHING even remotely invasive in my landscape. Should I remove these aggressively, or are these guys okay to leave for the time being? I will definitely be removing them once I can identify them properly (no flowers yet), but I'm wondering how aggressive I should be against these non-native species. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks!

ANSWER:

The wildflowers that are closely grown will sort themselves out.  There is no need to thin them.

You are wise to remove the non-natives from the "wildflower" mix.  Though they might not escape from cultivation, there is no reason to take a chance on that.

 

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