Uncategorized

When should I seed a Horse Paddock

Posted on March 22, 2019

If you are asking the question when should i seed a Horse Paddock. Then the following sets out some simple guidelines.

We answer this question in 2 main ways.

What is the right time for you to plant Horse Paddock grass seeds.

In terms of the issues that you may need to consider when looking to seed a horse paddock.

  • All grass Leys break down over time so at some point you need to improve them or start with a new ley.
  • You need to plan so that you give the new a grass a chance to establish. If sowing a new ley you should ideally keep the horses of for 12 months. If renovating an existing ley, ideally keep them off for one season.  This is important as horses can damage young grass.
  • Before you spend the money on planting a new grass ley consider getting the soil tested. If you haven't done this for a while it is a good investment. If there is an issue with the soil whatever you spend on a seed could be undermined.
  • You need to decide what it is that you want from the new grass. There can be a direct conflict between the type of grass that would give long-term safe grazing.  These generally have a wide range of non rye grass species in them.  As against if you need predominantly hay production. Here a mixture would generally be a narrow range of high yielding ryegrass species.

 

What is the right time for the Horse Paddock seeds?

Horse Paddock Horse paddock

For grass seed to grow vigorously there needs to be ideally three good conditions.

  • Firstly, a reasonable consistent warm soil temperature
  • Secondly a good amount of moisture or rain
  • Lastly a well prepared seed bed

The first two clearly generally are dependent on the weather.  This means generally the best times for planting are between mid March and mid May and mid August and end of September.  As we have found over the last few years the conditions are not always right even in these periods. If they are not, then wait until they are.

The better prepared the seed bed is the better establishment you will get. If sowing from new, it is generally easier to make sure you have a good seed bed. Then the seed can be broadcast and rolled afterwards.  If adding to an existing pasture, you need to cut the grass back short, harrow the ground hard, broadcast the seed and finally roll afterwards.

The rolling at the end is very important as you are trying to make a good seed to soil contact.

 

To successfully seed a horse paddock and improve the pasture follow this simple plan.

  1. If you haven't tested the soil recently do so.
  2. Decide if you want a mixture for grazing or for hay.
  3. Plan so that you can keep the horses off for the appropriate length of time.
  4. Plant the seeds at the time that would encourage maximum growth into a well prepared seed bed.

 

Following this should result in you improving the long-term grazing for your horses.

For more information on our Horse paddock click here.

YOUR ROUTE TO BETTER GRAZING

If you need any more information or advice, please feel to contact Tim Evans on either 0800 0854399.  Or at shop@meadowmania.co.uk


This post was posted in Uncategorized and was tagged with Horse paddock

Wildflowers and Butterflies

Posted on March 18, 2019

Native Wildflowers and Butterflies from the UK.

Cornflower and butterfly Cornflower and butterfly

There are over 70 different Butterfly species that have been recorded in the UK. Most of them have specific primary sources of food from plants they prefer. Much of the following information about wildflowers and butterflies has been taken from an excellent resource online at;

UKButterflies.co.uk

They have a very comprehensive site with information about most butterfly species and in particular wildflowers & butterflies. Showing which wildflowers and grasses are Butterflies primary plant food. We have taken part of their list and looked at just wildflowers that are commercially available.

 

 

On the table below; on the right is the species of Butterfly with a link to more details of the species on the UK butterflies website. On the left we have linked to the individual plant species which you can buy as seed or plugs. If there is not a link we can still get the species commercially and you would need to contact us.

Butterfly on Marigold Butterfly on Marigold

As with Bees their have been a big fall in numbers of Butterflies in last few years and it is important that we plant flowers that will benefit them . A  great resource for all things Butterfly can be found at the following link.

Butterfly Conservation

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you want to support native wildflowers and Butterflies thne  grow or plant some wildflowers that will suit a range of butterflies then consider either our;

Butterfly Border Mix

Butterfly Plug Plant mix

Wildflowers and Butterflies

English Name Latin Name
Agrimony Agrimonia eupatoria Grizzled Skipper
Bents (various) Agrostis spp. Gatekeeper
Meadow Brown
Small Heath
Wall
Bird's-foot Trefoil Lotus corniculatus Common Blue
Cryptic Wood White
Dingy Skipper
Green Hairstreak
Short-tailed Blue
Silver-studded Blue
Wood White
Blackthorn Prunus spinosa Black Hairstreak
Black-veined White
Brown Hairstreak
Scarce Swallowtail
Buckthorn Rhamnus cathartica Brimstone
Clovers (various) Trifolium spp. Clouded Yellow
Pale Clouded Yellow
Cock's-foot Dactylis glomerata Essex Skipper
Large Skipper
Meadow Brown
Ringlet
Speckled Wood
Wall
Common Nettle Urtica dioica Comma
Map
Peacock
Red Admiral
Small Tortoiseshell
Common Sorrel Rumex acetosa Small Copper
Cowslip Primula veris Duke of Burgundy
Devil's-bit Scabious Succisa pratensis Marsh Fritillary
Fescues (various) Festuca spp. Gatekeeper
Meadow Brown
Small Heath
Field Pansy Viola arvensis Queen of Spain Fritillary
Garlic Mustard Alliaria petiolata Green-veined White
Orange-tip
Grasses (various) Gramineae spp. Arran Brown
Greater Bird's-foot Trefoil Lotus pedunculatus Cryptic Wood White
Wood White
   
Kidney Vetch Anthyllis vulneraria Small Blue
Lucerne Medicago sativa Clouded Yellow
Pale Clouded Yellow
Short-tailed Blue
 
Meadow Vetchling Lathyrus pratensis Cryptic Wood White
Wood White
Meadow-grasses (various) Poa spp. Gatekeeper
Meadow Brown
Ringlet
Small Heath
Primrose Primula vulgaris Duke of Burgundy
Red Clover Trifolium pratense Mazarine Blue
Short-tailed Blue
Red Fescue Festuca rubra Grayling
Marbled White
Ribwort Plantain Plantago lanceolata Glanville Fritillary
Heath Fritillary
Sheep's Sorrel Rumex acetosella Small Copper
Sheep's-fescue Festuca ovina Grayling
Marbled White
Silver-spotted Skipper
Small Scabious Scabiosa columbaria
Tufted Hair-grass Deschampsia cespitosa Ringlet
Yorkshire-fog Holcus lanatus Marbled White
Small Skipper
Speckled Wood
Wall

This post was posted in Uncategorized and was tagged with wildflower seed packets, cornflower, ragged robin, Wild Flower Meadows

How Big are Wildflower Plug Plants

Posted on February 21, 2019

Our Wild Flower Plugs Plants are produced as follows

  • The original stock of seed has been sourced from the Wild in the UK.
  • The seed is then multiplied up commercially and some of it is used to produce our plug plants.
  • The plug plants can take between three to 18 months to produce a satisfactory plug.
  • The Plugs are grown semi outdoors. This is so they will be frost Hardy  and can be planted out at anytime over the winter.
  • The size of of plugs is 40 cc and there is a maximum of 150 per tray. You can see photos of our plug plants below.
  • Different species will have different size leaves on depending on the time of year and the species.
  • They will all have a very strong well developed root systems.
  • Once planted, as the weather warms up, they will continue to grow and develop.
  • If you have any questions or any concerns about the plugs we supply please feel free to contact us. shop@meadowmania.co.uk or 0800 0854399

    Primrose Plugs Feb Primrose Plugs Feb

Cowslip Plugs Feb Cowslip Plugs Feb

 

150 plugs in a Tray in April 150 plugs in a Tray in April

ox eye daisy plugs in ground in Feb ox eye daisy plugs in ground in Feb

This post was posted in Uncategorized and was tagged with wildflower seed packets

What are Meadow Flowers

Posted on March 15, 2018

Meadow Flowers are commonly thought of as Wild flowers. There are though, a number of groups that wild flowers can fall into. It is important if you are trying to create a natural meadow that you understand what flowers are appropriate.

Cornfield Annuals.

Cornfield Annuals in 2017 Cornfield Annuals in 2017

These include species such as Poppy, Cornflower, Corn Marigold etc. They are short lived and generally very colourful. Historically they appeared in arable fields, when the farmer ploughed the field each year it brought new seeds up to the top. With the advent of agrochemicals, they have all but disappeared in arable fields.

They are often included with meadow flower mixes to add some colour in the first year.

 

 

 

 

 

Woodlands and Water Edges

Yellow Flag Iris Yellow Flag Iris

There are specific wild flowers that you would expect generally to see just in certain habitats. So, in woodlands you would find species such as Hedge Bedstraw, Wild Foxglove and Bluebells. By the edge of water, you may find species such as Yellow Flag Iris, Purple Loosestrife and Teasel.

Some of species of wild flowers may sometimes appear in meadows but they are most likely found by water or in shaded areas.

 

 

 

 

Meadow Flowers.

Most of us when we walk down by seaside, down country lanes of across old meadow areas

Meadow Flowers Meadow Flowers

will, if we look, notice different wildflower in amongst the grass. The grass is an important part of this equation It provides the normal back drop for the wild flowers.

There are hundreds of different wild flowers that can be found growing wild in the UK. But some of the more common ones are Birdsfoot Trefoil, Cowslip, Campions, Plantain, Ox eye daisy , Wild carrot etc.

 

 

 

 

 

Many people now would like to introduce Meadow Flowers into their garden. They work best on poorer soils. This is not that they will not grow on better soil, more that on good soils the species you do not want use the fertility better. On poorer soil it is more of a level playing field. Once they are established if properly managed they can be left to grow out over the summer and then cut down in early autumn. This reduces considerably the management time. The flowers are attractive and beneficial to butterflies and Bees etc, and bring more of them to your garden over the summer.

 

If you wanted to introduce an area of Meadow Flowers into your garden, then follow these simple rules.

  • Sow a mixture that is largely perennial flowers. You cut these down then they grow back each year.
  • Sow them with some grass or into grass if it is poor and has been ideally thinned out.
  • Sow in an area you are happy to grow wild (they are called wildflowers for a reason!)
  • The meadow may take a couple of years to get going so be prepared to be patient.
  • Once established leave to grow out over the summer and enjoy.

 

If you would like any more information on Meadow Flowers, then please contact Tim Evans on Freephone 0800 0854399 or by email shop@meadowmania.co.uk


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