Safe Seed Sowing times
We are often asked when are the best seed sowing times for grass seed or wild flower seed. As follows are our guidelines.
Besides the right soil seeds need two main things;
This relate to the temperature of the soil not just the climate. Most seeds won't germinate below a soil temperature of about 7°C (45°F) Ideally the soil temperature should be a minimum of 9-12 degrees celsius. This is usually from March through until September. It is also important that you need several days when the weather and soil are consistently warm for germination to happen.
Without enough water seed will not grow. Ideally you would sow the seed just prior to a heavy shower. In 2017 and 2016 we seem to have long periods in April when there has been little rainfall. April 2017 there was about 40% of the average rainfall across most of the UK. In these cases, you may need to water the ground and if so then follow these simple rules.
- The best times to water your lawn area area early morning or early evening, when there is generally less wind and heat. Watering at these times allows for less evaporation into the air, greater penetration into the soil, and less run-off.
- It will usually take 10-15 minutes to water your lawn thoroughly. If puddles or run-off occur, turn your sprinkler off for a few minutes to allow water to penetrate the soil.
- Let the lawn completely dry out between watering intervals.
Watering a new lawn seed can work well if you have the right set up to do it little and often. For large areas or horse paddocks irrigation is generally not an option. Our advice regarding wild flower meadows is to leave it alone until rain comes naturally. If you are set up to irrigate an area well then it can be beneficial. If not then patience and the belief it must rain at some point is the only option!
Clearly the period from March through the early October is when you would expect the ground to be warm enough to give good seed sowing times. It is normally advisable not to sow in the summer months June and July as they are to dry.
mixtures are Mid-March through to end of May and Mid-August through to Mid-October weather permitting.
Wild flower annuals fall into two types.
- Cornfield Annuals such as Cornflower and Poppy
- Non-Native annuals such as Cosmos and Californian Poppy
We normally recommend that these should be sown by the end of April. They will germinate after this but there is a minimum of 8 to 12 weeks from sowing to flowering. If they are planted much later then you will not get much of a flowering season and they only last one summer season.
Cornfield annuals can be sown in the Autumn or Spring. Most of the non-native annuals benefit from seed sowing times best done in the spring.
If you need any more specific information or help then contact Tim Evans on 0800 0854399 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org