Wildflowers look lovely and are great for nature

Wildflowers have become quite a trend in gardens in recent years. Not only is this kind of naturalistic planting attractive and relatively easy to care for, it can do wonders for attracting wildlife too.  In October 2021, Hambrooks Garden Landscaping colleague, Sam Foster, attended a course to learn more.  Here’s how he got on.

wildflower turf
wildflower turf

I think we are all aware that interest in wildlife has definitely been growing. More and more of our customers don’t just want a beautiful garden but one that is attractive to birds and insects too.  I was keen to learn more about wildflower seeds and turf as these are definitely a great way for us all to support the diversity in our gardens.

Wildflower Turf are a local family company, also based in Hampshire. From a farming background, they began growing turf commercially in 1982 but diversified into wildflowers in 2003.  They supply a range of products to suit a wide range of situations – from recreating habitat for Great Crested Newts in Popley to establishing a drought-tolerant green roof on Alder Hay Children’s Hospital. Fortunately, they also run courses to teach landscape designers like me how to get the best out of them!

I can see that, for our landscape customers, it will be the wildflower turf that I will be designing with most often.  Like any turf, it requires careful watering when it’s newly laid but it will show much faster results than sowing seeds or using their ‘Meadowscape Pro’ seed and soil mixes.

Not many clients are likely to have the space to dedicate to a full wildflower meadow so I’m expecting to design wildflower areas within garden schemes.  It doesn’t matter if you can only dedicate a few square meters, the good news is that it will still attract wildlife.  It’s also great for hilly or banked areas, as you’re mowing it less often than ordinary grass, and it can work really beautifully under trees or to blend in with the wider landscape around your garden.

Preparation is key and similar to laying normal turf or grass seed.  Any existing turf, plants or weeds should be removed and the ground rotavated and levelled as much as possible; this will give a much better finish.  The turf is then laid in the usual way and needs to be watered regularly while it establishes.

Maintenance is relatively minimal once your wildflowers have established. Mid-season, around early June, it’s worth chopping the whole area down to about half the height.  This might seem drastic for a short time but it really does encourage everything to regrow with more flowers and more impact!  Then, at the end of the season, when flowers are visibly dead, you need to mow it to take away dead foliage and allow space for next year’s seeds to grow.  (You might need to start with something like a hedge trimmer before you can get your mower on it!)

I enjoyed learning about how the turf and seeds are grown and the mix of plants in each mix.  Wildflower Turf can even do a bespoke mix if you have any special requests.  I also learnt how wildflower mixes can not only attract wildlife (and help to save our struggling bee populations) but improve drainage and help soil retention too.  And I’d really like to have a go at a green roof; I don’t think we’ve been asked for one of those before but I’d love to try it!


Further reading:
Find out how Sam started as an Apprentice here at Hambrooks
Wildflower turf is great for wildlife – read more about wildlife gardening here




N. Haggard 20 September 2022

I just wanted to drop you a quick note to say how delighted I am with my new garden.

Jon, my designer, listened to my ideas and delivered on everything I asked for. I wanted something different to any garden I’d had before, no lawn, no landscaping but packed with plants. He designed such a lovely secret garden, around a statement tree. And I have to commend him for his unwavering patience! I changed my mind a hundred times but never did he give me the impression that he was losing patience with my endless indecision. And my confidence in him led me to place an order for over £10k.

My landscaping team, Blade and Tony, were exceptional, from their work ethic, skill and knowledge, to the way they dealt with me, the customer. My standards are very high and I couldn’t fault them.

All in all, a very professional team of people. And it showed that they all care. I’m over the moon with the finished result. I will send you a before and after photo. Thank you so much.

A delighted customer.

G. Gray. May 2022

My front garden has been transformed by Andy and Bradley who both worked incredibly hard and I am delighted with the result. Andy had the vision and skill to turn my idea into reality and I can't thank him enough.

C. Haig Sept 2021

We recently had our garden landscaped by Hambrooks and I just wanted to pass on my thanks, not just for the outcome - which is superb - but for the professionalism of all the staff involved on the job who are all a credit to you company. Mike, Dave, Les and Adam.

H. Sharp Sept 2021

I just wanted to let you know how delighted I am with my new garden. Melanie was a delight to work with and the ideas she had have worked perfectly. Also Sheldon laid the patio beautifully and him and Dave were a pleaseure to have at my house. Quiet workers and polite.

B. Rendell April 2021

I would like to say how delighted we are with the work carried out. Mel, Paul and Tony all worked very hard, they totally took on board the specific need relating to safety as well as the general garden issues. Paul and Tony were excellent at consulting and discussing with me what I felt best in terms of the brief and adjusting if and as necessary, constantly pleasant and polite to deal with. Mel had picked up on particular issues from the first consultation and offered valuable advice. The outcome means a great deal less worry for me going forward.
Altogether a very positive experience and outcome which I would not hesitate to recommend to others.

Stephen March 2021

Dom and Adam's work (garden maintenance) is greatly appreciated. Dom really listened to everything we discussed very carefully and went out of his way to understand and then act upon that discussion. We are extremely pleased with the work done - both to the pond and pyracantha.


We have been coming to Hambrooks for years and it's our favourite garden centre because of its friendly helpful staff and a great selection of plants and trees and the garden design ideas.

“We wanted to write and say how pleased we are with our low maintenance garden makeover. We are very impressed with the attitude of your staff who were prepared to listen to our requirements. Your team John and Rick brushed up and left everything tidy at the end of the day. We now have a garden we can manage and it looks great. THANK YOU HAMBROOKS.”

Mr & Mrs Venables, Southampton. April 2019

“Dear Josh & Mike We just want to say you both did a brilliant job of designing our garden along with the guys who did the work who were amazing. A few weeks on its looks even better now some of the plants are blooming. Thank you!!”

Mr & Mrs Gazzard, Winchester July 2019

“To James, John & Rikki. Thank you so much, we are delighted with our new garden. We really appreciate the attention to detail, the high quality workmanship and the standard of the finished project. We are amazed at how John & Rikki resolved the difficulties of the site and by the quality of their craftmanship. It was a pleasure to work with them and thank you for making our ideas into something we will enjoy for years to come.”