There are so many reasons why you should plant wildflower seeds in the fall.
Can you believe I used to think planting flowers was a waste of space? I wanted veggies to take up every ounce of square footage I had when I first started gardening.
Now, my garden contains more flowers than ever before. Planting flowers, wildflowers included, is great for so many reasons. And fall is the perfect time to scatter those seeds.
Why you should plant wildflower seeds in the fall
Here’s why you should plant those seeds soon.
You’ll have flowers in the spring.
Fall planting means you’ll be gifted with pretty blooms as soon as spring arrives—timing, of course, depends on the varieties you choose to plant.
If you’re planting wildflower seed in a cold climate like mine, you need to ensure you get the timing right.
Plant too soon, and you risk having those seeds germinate. If they germinate, they’ll get killed right away by frost.
The best time to sow wildflower seeds is after at least one or two hard frosts. This lowers the chances that a thaw will occur, and the soil will warm enough for seeds to sprout.
In warmer climates, you can plant sooner. Sowing about two to three months before frost arrives allows those flowers to develop root systems that will enable them to survive over winter.
Some flower seeds need a period of cold to sprout.
Some seeds, including certain varieties of wildflowers, require a period of cold exposure to germinate. This is called cold stratification. When you plant in the spring, you might have to pop those seeds in the freezer. But by planting in the fall, you let Mother Nature do the hard work for you.
Planting is easier.
Another reason why you should plant wildflower seeds in the fall is that fall is less hectic. And since you’re unlikely to be doing much else, there’s plenty of time to dedicate to sowing wildflower seeds.
Fall also tends to be a nicer season compared to spring. Sure, warm spring weather is lovely. But in the fall, you’re more likely to have pleasant, non-rainy days suitable for working the soil and sowing seeds.
Weeds aren’t as much of an issue.
Weed seed that’s hiding out in your garden won’t be as much of a bother if you plant in the fall. That’s because, at the end of the season, weed seeds have gone dormant.
And, in the spring, weeds won’t have as much time to overtake the wildflowers, and you can easily spot and remove them before they become a problem.
Steph Coelho is a freelance writer gardening in zone 5b. She is a certified Square Foot Gardener and has taught various garden-related workshops. When she’s not digging in the dirt or writing, she’s cooking up fresh produce, running, or listening to her favorite podcasts.