My Failed Wildflower Garden Rises
I have worked very hard over the last 10 years to create a wildflower garden in front of my studio. The location has everything to do with the drainfield for the studio's septic system.
This part of the yard looks perfectly open and driveable but the slotted pipes that are the drains for the septic system are very close to the surface and could be damaged by big trucks driving over the area. So I thought of having a wildflower garden over the top of the pipes. How cool would that be? Wildflowers in the spring but then I would just leave the patch to mature and drop all the seeds. We could mow it again in the fall/winter in time to plant more seeds. That way the entire area would not look like you could drive over it. And the flowers would just get better and better. Voila! The perfect solution.
Year after year I have bought seed. Year after year I have mixed the seed with good soil and broadcasted it over the patch of land. Year after year we have meager production of wildflowers. Year after year the whole patch has looked like the mower broke down before we could get it mowed. And I've had help. My wonderful landscapers, Menefee Landscaping, have worked with me on this. Tilling the soil, spreading the seed, rolling it in. Results? Nothing. Or almost nothing.
Turns out I can't grow wildflowers. That's particularly sad because this part of Texas is known for it's wonderful wildflowers. In the spring, bluebonnets cover the roadsides and pastures. Indian paintbrush and coreopsis bloom up and down our road but apparently my little patch is just not interested in growing wildflowers.
So this year we came up with something different. We are using a portion of my previous wildflower garden area and planting a different variety of plants and flowers. It doesn't need to be wildflowers to keep people from driving over the area, it just needs to look planted in something. The seeds went in earlier this spring and the plants are growing in now.
At this point, it's mostly weeds with a few lovely sunflowers and some left over coreopsis. I love both flowers so that's nice. Soon the landscapers will be by to plant my summer color. They always make the place look sunny and bright, active and colorful. My (non) wildflower garden will get some new flowers and look just as wonderful.