What to grow in grass ?

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Greenfingered MoneySaving
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longforgottenlongforgotten Forumite
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edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Greenfingered MoneySaving
Opposite my house is a large area of grass that the council mows it. I think it would be nice if there were some flowers growing in it before the mowing season starts. I do not want them to be a bother to the council so what do you reckon ? Perhaps a few early flowering crocus, or snowdrops ? I may even scatter some primrose seed as I can see that the 'mower' is not averse to mowing around daffodils I have seen elsewhere in the area.

Good idea or should I leave well alone


  • FosterdogFosterdog Forumite
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    personally I'd sprinkle some wildflower seed around the area, lots of councils are starting to add wildflower mix to verges and patches of grass. It will look like a mini meadow.

    Although be prepared for them to just mow it all down
  • As you say, some bulbs would be the best thing. No point spending much money digging and planting a bed as they won't bother edging it and will probably just run the mowers right through it!
  • DavesnaveDavesnave Forumite
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    A piece of grass that is supposed to look 'tidy' will be a tough area to add flowers to. Where roadside plantings officially involve daffodils, then the mower should avoid them for a while so that the leaves can do their work; otherwise the bulb will shrink and the plant will stop flowering.

    Contractors might avoid daffs for that reason, but most seed-raised wild flowers need until July to complete their life cycle. so unless the whole area stays uncut till then, it's unlikely that traditional hay field flowers will survive long.

    Primroses thrive where I am, but not in grassland so much as hedge banks, which are not cut until late summer. I also have cowslips in my grass, which are increasing exponentially, but only because I mow around them. There will come a time when I can't do that, and it would come quite soon if that grass was an open space intended for public use.

    So, whether wild flowers could be successfully introduced depends on what the area of grass is potentially used for. People do need areas of close-cut grass, because long grass is often too wet to sit on or walk across.

    Either way, just chucking wild flower seed around and hoping isn't effective. I'm not suggesting you had that in mind, but it's what many people think should be done. It's harder than that.
    People who don't stand for something will fall for anything.
  • ApodemusApodemus Forumite
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    Also, bear in mind that many wildflowers are best in low nitrogen grasslands and are out-competed by grass when soil nutrition is better. Hay-meadow wildflower species work best when all clippings are removed, leading to a declining soil fertility. If the area in question is managed as high amenity grass, then it is likely that the clippings are removed when mowing, but for normal grass areas most councils tend to not take this added step (and expense).
  • ljonskiljonski Forumite
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    daisies as mowing them doesn't kill them!
    "if the state cannot find within itself a place for those who peacefully refuse to worship at its temples, then it’s the state that’s become extreme".Revd Dr Giles Fraser on Radio 4 2017
  • MojisolaMojisola Forumite
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    I do not want them to be a bother to the council so what do you reckon?

    If your council is like ours, they will be open to suggestions from residents but very unhappy at people doing things off their own bat.

    One local resident who planted up a grassy area near his house was threatened with legal action and made to remove all the plants and re-instate the grass to its previous condition.
  • I don't want to do anything that will interfere with the mowing of the grass. My main thought was to introduce a native flower that could appear after and before mowing season. A few early crocus sounds good to me then.

    Our council already has areas where they put aside for flowers for the bees. Looks most impressive when they are out in flower, very pretty and colourful.
  • ripplyukripplyuk Forumite
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    I'm sure councils differ, but in my area, it seems they're quite happy for residents to plant these areas. It could go further than you'd hope though, with the council virtually abandoning the area as they assume it's been 'adopted', which is what I've seen happen near me.

    Some neighbours of mine now have all sorts growing in the grassy area beside their house. It's more densely planted than their own garden. Everything from daffodils to sweet peas. It looks lovely for everyone driving past.

    Beside my house is a similar area, though much larger. I'm tempted to plant some snowdrops or early flowering crocuses. Things that will be gone before the council mowing starts, but nothing more. I don't want to end up maintaining the entire area. :)
  • edited 30 April 2017 at 12:28PM
    longforgottenlongforgotten Forumite
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    edited 30 April 2017 at 12:28PM
    Yes, ripplyuk, that's what I'm after.

    Something that will look natural, help the insects in the winter or at the start of the season then over to the council ....

    IMPORTANT EDIT ..it's a no to crocus then as they can be poisonous to dogs ! I'll be in trouble with the dog walkers.
  • FarwayFarway Forumite
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    ljonski wrote: »
    daisies as mowing them doesn't kill them!

    Same for dandelions, look lovely and flower early April onwards so I guess some will always be around

    I have heard it said that if dandelions were as hard to grow as say orchids then every one would want and cosset them
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