Butterfly/Bee plantings and mulch

misterpatrick(4)December 29, 2011

Hello all,

I am slowly working on the yard of the house we purchased last year. I have a great woods full of natives and a small bit of prairie I'm working on. There is a small strip on land that abuts my neighbors property that is also the border of my vegetable garden. The garden is raised with 2x12's and this area is fairly low so gets a lot of water. The neighbors side is covered with a wood mulch/chips of some sort with a few low shrubs and a river birch. This is on the north side of my garden so I'd like to plant some shorter sunflowers for moisture control as well as a bunch of bee/bird friendly things like butterflyweed, lavender hyssop, coneflower, blazingstar etc. The one issue is that the area is pretty weedy so I was thinking of covering the entire area with pine-bark mulch and then either planting seedlings or direct sowing in small cleared areas.

Any thoughts on this plan? Just wondering if the pine-bark mulch will do a good job with web control but still allow for these natives and other flowers to grow well? Too acidic as it breaks down?

This is a small area - about 30' long by about 5' deep.

Should I start seedlings for some of these plants (which ones) or just direct sow?

Any tips greatly appreciated!

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akaj9(9 Central Florida)

I would lay down some heavy layers of newspaper over the weeds, then heavily mulch the area...wait through winter then start planting in spring pending the weather and your climate and type of flowers..what zone are you in? that may help....also ck. out lasagna composting....

    Bookmark   January 1, 2012 at 1:05AM
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docmom_gw Zone 5 MI(5)

Sounds like a great plan. Do you wintersow? If not, check out the wintersowing forum for help getting seedlings started inexpensively. Do you need seeds? I probably have lots of the varieties you need. Let me know if I should put together a care package.


    Bookmark   January 7, 2012 at 10:19PM
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Thanks for the tips! Sorry for the slow response, I've been out of town. I don't wintersow, but I have been getting ready to start vegetable seedlings so I have the equipment for that. I doubt I'll have a chance to cover the area this winter, but early spring I'll lay down newspaper and then pinebark mulch hopefully before any weeds have a chance to sprout.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2012 at 1:42PM
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