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Jun 7, 2016 5:51 PM CST
Thread OP
Name: Glen Ingram
Macleay Is, Qld, Australia (Zone 12a)
(Lee Reinke X Rose F Kennedy) X Unk
Amaryllis Hybridizer Canning and food preservation Lilies Native Plants and Wildflowers Orchids
Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Pollen collector Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Plays in the sandbox Sedums Seed Starter
I was watching a British gardening program this week on how lawns are vanishing worldwide.

Modern families prefer to have no lawns usually replacing them with hard stand. The reason is supposedly that both partners are too busy working to make ends meet to care for and mow one.

Worryingly, one of the adverse impacts of losing lawns, they argued, is the loss of invertebrate biodiversity, for example, insects. Despite what people think of lawns, they contended, these are not biological deserts.

But all was not lost, one of the modern solutions they offered for the busy was the Wildflower Lawn. Economically, it was more expensive to establish per square metre but, practically, it only needed to be mowed once or twice a year. As well, it was beautiful and the pollinators loved it.

I have since been surfing looking at wildlife lawns. I have not been too successful for Australia but I was quite surprised how the idea was not only in Britain it was already out there in the US.

Has anyone tried wildflower lawns or would want to?

http://www.hgtvgardens.com/law...

https://blogs.reading.ac.uk/gr...

http://www.wildflowerturf.co.u...
The problem is that when you are young your life it is ruined by your parents. When you are older it is ruined by your children.
Last edited by Gleni Jun 7, 2016 6:05 PM Icon for preview
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Jun 7, 2016 7:13 PM CST
Moderator
Name: josephine
Arlington, Texas (Zone 8a)
Hi Everybody!! Let us talk native.
Native Plants and Wildflowers Organic Gardener Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Butterflies Garden Ideas: Master Level Forum moderator
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier Birds Cat Lover
I think that it is a great idea, our own front yard has no grass, only flower beds with mulched paths in between.
A lot depends on the city where you live and what they allow. Smiling
Wildflowers are the Smiles of Nature.
Gardening with Texas Native Plants and Wildflowers.
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Jun 8, 2016 12:10 AM CST
central Illinois
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Plant Identifier Garden Ideas: Level 2
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Avid Green Pages Reviewer Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Photo Contest Winner: 2017
Our front lawn is 2 Burning Bushes, a large pine (once a X-mas tree I think), a wildflower colony of Downy Skullcap, some daylilies and for the ground cover - Ivy..., and a line of low evergreens next to the front sidewalk. No grass. May get mowed once a year (to reduce potential mosquito populations).
I failed to mention several kind of deep holes, complements of Plato.
Nothing that's been done can ever be changed.
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Jun 8, 2016 5:57 AM CST
Moderator
Name: josephine
Arlington, Texas (Zone 8a)
Hi Everybody!! Let us talk native.
Native Plants and Wildflowers Organic Gardener Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Butterflies Garden Ideas: Master Level Forum moderator
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier Birds Cat Lover
It looks like you have down pretty well J. Smiling
Wildflowers are the Smiles of Nature.
Gardening with Texas Native Plants and Wildflowers.
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Jun 8, 2016 8:07 AM CST
Name: Caroline Scott
Calgary (Zone 4a)
Bulbs Winter Sowing Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Peonies Lilies Charter ATP Member
Region: Canadian Enjoys or suffers cold winters Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Garden Ideas: Master Level
Sometimes the new lawn seed mixes are called Eco Lawn mixes here.
Instead of monocultures of grass seeds, they include a diversity of low growing plants.
They are also called Alternative lawn seed mixes.
I am removing the traditional lawn here, but have not got to replacing it. So until I get to it, it will be covered with bark chips. Eventually some will be converted back to a more Biodiverse lawn area.

Biodiversity is Mother Nature's plan!
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Jun 8, 2016 11:44 AM CST
Name: Gene Staver
Portage WI 53901 (Zone 5a)
Annuals Houseplants Herbs Cat Lover Garden Photography Cactus and Succulents
Butterflies Birds Hummingbirder Garden Sages
I have too much acreage to mow regularly. So, I am letting a couple of areas return to being a prairie. Not that everyone approves. Is there a lot of difference between creating a prairie and a wildflower lawn? Other than being heavy on flowering plants. Gene
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Jun 8, 2016 4:42 PM CST
Name: Caroline Scott
Calgary (Zone 4a)
Bulbs Winter Sowing Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Peonies Lilies Charter ATP Member
Region: Canadian Enjoys or suffers cold winters Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Garden Ideas: Master Level
I think the only difference would be the height of the plants.
The wildflower lawns tend towards dwarf plants. Some do include grasses
such as fescues which do not grow very tall.
Your Prairie Idea sounds good!
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Jun 22, 2016 6:19 AM CST
Name: stone
near Macon Georgia (USA) (Zone 8a)
Garden Sages Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Plant Identifier
Very interesting that the lawn advocates are claiming that losing lawns is ecologically harmful.

I've always been of the opinion that any patch of weeds was going to be a superior wildlife magnet to the turf desert that American towns and cities have become.

http://www.stonethegardener.co...

Although... If you are required to have a lawn, a wildflower meadow seems far superior to the over-watered chemical-drenched half-inch tall patches of stubble that America seems to have decided is desirable.

Personally...
I haven't planted any grass at my house.... But.....
I do have patches of Bermuda and bahiagrass growing down the middle of my drive.... Too much trouble to dig it out....

And.... In the rest of the property.... Only the native grasses that are naturally in the seed bank... Bluestem, love grass, switch grass, and broom sedge lol.... (broom sedge is another name for blue stem).

Thumb of 2016-06-22/stone/6cfe34
Switch grass

Thumb of 2016-06-22/stone/4847c7
Silk grass... Lol... Not grass, one of the Scratch daisies...

The neat thing about just growing a nice patch of natives.... Is the opurtunity to learn about different plants.

Those turf crews think... if it's green, mow it or weed eat it.
When your only tools are lawn equipment, everything is grass.
Last edited by stone Jun 22, 2016 6:36 AM Icon for preview
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Jun 22, 2016 7:29 AM CST
Name: Caroline Scott
Calgary (Zone 4a)
Bulbs Winter Sowing Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Peonies Lilies Charter ATP Member
Region: Canadian Enjoys or suffers cold winters Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Garden Ideas: Master Level
The monocultured lawns were invented to sustain the profits of chemical and machine companies. The monoculture lawns have no environmental value.
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Jun 22, 2016 10:57 AM CST
Moderator
Name: josephine
Arlington, Texas (Zone 8a)
Hi Everybody!! Let us talk native.
Native Plants and Wildflowers Organic Gardener Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Butterflies Garden Ideas: Master Level Forum moderator
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier Birds Cat Lover
I wish more people shared our ideas, but maybe some day Smiling
Wildflowers are the Smiles of Nature.
Gardening with Texas Native Plants and Wildflowers.
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Jun 22, 2016 5:31 PM CST
Thread OP
Name: Glen Ingram
Macleay Is, Qld, Australia (Zone 12a)
(Lee Reinke X Rose F Kennedy) X Unk
Amaryllis Hybridizer Canning and food preservation Lilies Native Plants and Wildflowers Orchids
Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Pollen collector Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Plays in the sandbox Sedums Seed Starter
I think the argument is to encourage people to grow life in their yards not hard stand. Hate lawns all you like but they teem with life compared with a brick.
The problem is that when you are young your life it is ruined by your parents. When you are older it is ruined by your children.
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Jun 22, 2016 5:36 PM CST
Name: Caroline Scott
Calgary (Zone 4a)
Bulbs Winter Sowing Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Peonies Lilies Charter ATP Member
Region: Canadian Enjoys or suffers cold winters Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Garden Ideas: Master Level
Yes paved and brick areas interfere with the normal water flow.
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Jun 23, 2016 9:33 PM CST
Maryland (Zone 7b)
Passionate about Native Plants
Bee Lover Salvias Native Plants and Wildflowers Hummingbirder Critters Allowed Garden Photography
Butterflies Birds Region: Texas Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Photo Contest Winner 2021
Just found this thread...and it makes me happy. I've let the grass go; gave the lawn mower away and got rid of the gas can. Now it's "weeds" - beautiful, interesting, native weeds, like rough fruit scale seed which is feeding black swallowtail butterfly larva and milkweed vines for the monarchs. The paths are crushed granite and free mulch from the county. When it gets too tall, I use a little battery-operated weed eater to take it down a bit. Eye protection is used, but no ear muffs are necessary. So glad I live in the country and don't have to worry about neighbors complaining or deed restrictions. The back acreage is native oak trees and thickets. The front pastures are wildflowers. Maybe I'll stop calling them pastures and refer to them as "meadows" from now on. I like this movement! It feels like the right direction to me. I find new surprises in my "walk on the wild side yard" every day.
Thanks for starting this thread, Glen. I feel at home here.
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Jun 23, 2016 9:37 PM CST
Moderator
Name: josephine
Arlington, Texas (Zone 8a)
Hi Everybody!! Let us talk native.
Native Plants and Wildflowers Organic Gardener Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Butterflies Garden Ideas: Master Level Forum moderator
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier Birds Cat Lover
I love Texas native plants and having more space for them makes me very happy. Smiling
Wildflowers are the Smiles of Nature.
Gardening with Texas Native Plants and Wildflowers.
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Jun 23, 2016 10:29 PM CST
Plants Admin
Name: Rob Duval
Milford, New Hampshire (Zone 5b)
Peppers Region: New Hampshire Vegetable Grower Daylilies Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Ideas: Level 1
Tomato Heads Annuals Hostas Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Spiders! Dog Lover
You guys must not have to deal with the same level of tick populations as we do in my area.
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Jun 24, 2016 5:40 AM CST
Moderator
Name: josephine
Arlington, Texas (Zone 8a)
Hi Everybody!! Let us talk native.
Native Plants and Wildflowers Organic Gardener Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Butterflies Garden Ideas: Master Level Forum moderator
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier Birds Cat Lover
Hello Rob, we are very lucky to not have ticks here, that we know of.
Of course in the wilderness I am sure there are many ticks, and chiggers too.
Our yard is a certified habitat for birds bees and butterflies, and of course whoever wanders in uninvited. Smiling
Wildflowers are the Smiles of Nature.
Gardening with Texas Native Plants and Wildflowers.
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Jun 24, 2016 7:14 AM CST
Name: Debra
Garland, TX (NE Dallas suburb) (Zone 8a)
Rescue dogs: Angels with paws needi
Dragonflies Dog Lover Bookworm I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Photography Bee Lover
Plays in the sandbox Butterflies Region: Texas Garden Sages I sent a postcard to Randy! Charter ATP Member
Chiggers! Yep, we have chiggers--in fact, I am scratching bites from six of them today. Glare Hilarious!


Since I no longer drive, I have wildflowers planted in parts of the driveway. The front yard is mostly perennials. Left enough grass to provide access, and for aesthetic reasons (I like the visual break). Back yard is mostly St. Augustine, which I hate, but the dogs like it. Smiling Have a battery-operated mower and edger/trimmer, plenty good enough for what is needed here. Images are from earlier, in Spring.

Thumb of 2016-06-24/lovemyhouse/66ba08 Thumb of 2016-06-24/lovemyhouse/f28170
Thumb of 2016-06-24/lovemyhouse/090763 Thumb of 2016-06-24/lovemyhouse/2e94e3
Thumb of 2016-06-24/lovemyhouse/4a2b36 Thumb of 2016-06-24/lovemyhouse/b65571
Thumb of 2016-06-24/lovemyhouse/2a1242 Thumb of 2016-06-24/lovemyhouse/d135c1
It’s okay to not know all the answers.
Avatar for Frillylily
Jun 24, 2016 7:25 AM CST
Missouri (Zone 6a)
Bulbs Enjoys or suffers cold winters Enjoys or suffers hot summers Ponds Peonies Region: Missouri
Lilies Keeper of Koi Irises Hydrangeas Garden Photography Cottage Gardener
We have ticks bad and that is why we have to keep the lawn mowed. If there were areas of the lawn that we didn't use, we could let it grow. But most people don't have a yard big enough for that. I would love to let part of our yard grow out, but my dh is they type that wants the manicured grass Sighing!
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Jun 24, 2016 7:29 AM CST
Maryland (Zone 7b)
Passionate about Native Plants
Bee Lover Salvias Native Plants and Wildflowers Hummingbirder Critters Allowed Garden Photography
Butterflies Birds Region: Texas Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Photo Contest Winner 2021
Your yard (and LACK of yard) is lovely, Debra! Looks like a wonderful place to stroll around.
Rob, I'm sorry that you have to deal with ticks. Not fun! I'm lucky not to have them, but do have scorpions, centipedes, fire ants, and chiggers. A bumper crop of chiggers!!! I always look like a "Connect the Dots" puzzle. Hilarious!
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Jun 24, 2016 7:36 AM CST
Moderator
Name: josephine
Arlington, Texas (Zone 8a)
Hi Everybody!! Let us talk native.
Native Plants and Wildflowers Organic Gardener Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Butterflies Garden Ideas: Master Level Forum moderator
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier Birds Cat Lover
Debra, your yard is absolutely beautiful, you have done a great job. Hurray! Hurray!
Wildflowers are the Smiles of Nature.
Gardening with Texas Native Plants and Wildflowers.

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