Get your wildflower on! As an initiative for Earth Day, we’ve sent a package of native wildflower seeds to our customers. This blog post is part of a series tied to our earth day campaign. You are currently on part one of this series.
We know you’re keen to start growing your native plant garden, but the optimal time for planting native seeds is in the Fall (which we’ll talk about next time). The good news is we’ve got time to get your garden ready for seeding.
Here’s how to get started:
- Pick a spot: You might want to create a drawing of your garden and earmark the patch to set aside for your native plant garden. You can start your native seed garden in a few large pots or choose a spot at least 5 meters square.
- Consider the conditions: While there are species of native plants that can thrive in different conditions from open, sunny meadows to woodlots and marshy areas, the seed packs we are sending you are best suited for sunny or partially sunny locations.
- Eliminate the competition: Ideally, you should remove and destroy all existing vegetation. To start with a clean slate, you can “bake” the space by covering it with landscape fabric that you can find at your local hardware store/nursery, or an old carpet. You can also dig out the grass, weeds and roots, but you’ll need to continue to remove any vegetation that pokes through during the summer because non-native species can be very invasive and hard to completely eliminate.
Biodiversity in Bloom
Do you know why we’re encouraging people to plant native seeds?
First, let’s start with a short definition: native plants describe the different flowers, grasses and trees that grow naturally in a specific area, which is why different regions in Canada can have different native plant species. The seed packs you’ll receive will contain a cross section of seeds, selected specifically for your ecozone (or region).
Native plants help form the ecological basis for all life and form the building blocks for biodiversity. Insects (including endangered honeybees and butterflies like the monarch), birds and people co-evolved with these plants and, as a result, depend on each other for survival.
Small Seeds, Big Advantages
Native plants are a great addition to any garden because they:
- Are colourful and interesting;
- Are perennial, which means once they’re established, they need little maintenance so they’re easier and less expensive to care for than exotic plants;
- Are drought tolerant;
- Help clean the air and reduce greenhouse gas emissions;
- Don’t require the use of herbicides or pesticides;
- Help to reduce soil erosion;
- Provide habitat for at-risk pollinators (like bees and butterflies); and
- Attract wildlife, and act as nature’s bird feeders—so don’t deadhead your flowers!
Next time, we’ll help you prepare for Fall seeding, but until then, you can find more information on native plant gardens from our partners at WWF-Canada.
We’re thrilled you are taking action with us to green our corner of the world. As North America’s #1 Forest Friendly Printer*, TPH has made sustainability a corporate priority. Whether it’s recycling, using ecologically friendly inks and paper or planting native seeds, we’re committed to running an eco-efficient organization. Together, we can make a difference.
*As rated in Canopy’s 2019 Blue Line Report