For most people, when you mention there term ‘wildflower meadow’ it evokes fond memories of flower filled-fields, often on a sunny day, buzzing with wildlife and pollinators. There is something truly delightful about a meadow of flowers in full bloom, and it is this feeling that we want everyone who has a Pictorial Meadow to experience.
The challenge of planting a meadow of your own is that a wild, native meadow will often only look at its most amazing for a few weeks of the year, and species such as rough grasses, docks and thistles can often dominate areas of the meadow, limiting the potential number of the bright and colourful flowers that will make the meadow truly delightful.
For the past 20 years, Pictorial Meadows has led the field in the development of unique, designer meadow seed mixes that specifically address this issue in order to give you amazing meadows with a greater proportion of flowers, and that lasts across an entire growing season. We have worked extensively with Professor Nigel Dunnett from the University of Sheffield, developed our own research and development centre, and undertaken literally thousands of different tests and trials to develop the range we offer today.
There have been a number of barriers for us to overcome in order to be able to offer the longest-flowering meadows available. Over the past 20 years we have documented the ideal germination conditions for hundreds of plant species, and then checked their germination performance across a vast array of soil and substrate types. We understand that not everyone has the ideal soil and we want to give the best chance of success to anyone who wants a Pictorial Meadow.
We have then sought to understand how these species perform when planted in companionship with others. The different characteristics of the species we use in our mixes mean that without this careful and methodical research it would be easy for one species in a mix to over-dominate a meadow, this would result in the loss of that carefully designed colour display that Pictorial Meadows have come to be renowned for.
Of course growing conditions change across the year, and species well suited to a spring flowering might not be so ready to put on a full flower show by August. Our meadows research and development has equipped us with the knowledge to overcome this challenge. A Pictorial Meadows seed mix contains a carefully balanced mix of species and cultivars that will offer a successional flowering meadow. As the year progresses and one species begins to offer less colour in the meadow, you will notice it is replaced by another which is just coming into it’s prime. It is through our deep understanding of the plants we work with, and how these plants work together in a meadow setting, that we are able to offer more colour, and for longer with a Pictorial Meadow.
We are exceptionally proud of what we have achieved over the past 20 years at Pictorial Meadows, but the learning for us has still not stopped. At any time you can still find extensive trials of new species and combinations in our developments fields, and our plant hunters continue to scour the globe for new and interesting species. Meanwhile, our designers are looking at new colour combinations, and further refining the mixes we have on offer.
We will continue to refine and develop our meadows into the future. It is worth regularly checking back regularly with us as we have a busy schedule of new meadow launches planned. You can stay up to date with all our latest meadow developments and new by signing up to our email newsletter here.