Meadows are complex habitats which have evolved over many years, but it is possible to recreate the meadow look in your own garden.
Annual meadows are great for filling bare areas in borders, along path edges or as a temporary fill ahead of permanent planting. They don't mind fertile garden soil and are fairly easy to establish from seed. They usually come into flower in June and continue until October, but from them until the new seeds germinate in spring, there will be nothing but bare earth.
Perennial meadows prefer unimproved soil and are best used as an alternative to grass, rather than as part of a border – maybe in a front garden or, if you have a large lawn, as a way to reduce mowing and increase biodiversity. Depending on the species, flowering can start from late March or April, and continue through to cutting in July or August.
Here are five key plants for creating a mini-meadow.
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