how much wildflower seed to use

Wildflower and native grass meadow

Start by measuring the wildflower seed project site

How much wildflower seed do I need?   Well, first decide how much ground you will expose to seeding wildflowers or native grasses.  Get the square footage by measuring length x width.  So then if you have 200 feet by 10 feet you have 2000 square ft.   Be aware of the type of soil and the weed competition you may encounter with unwanted species whose seeds may be present in the soil bank.  If the site has been kept mown, and is not a weedy area you will be able to use a lesser rate than in an area where a lot of competition from weeds or grass is expected.

How to choose which wildflower or grass seed mix to use?

Our mixes are designed for a purpose or a region.  So once you’ve determined your goal (example:  attracting pollinators), choose which Holland Wildflower Farm seed mix or mixes are best suited for your purpose.  Then decide how much seed you need.  We advise that you seed your site when you have taken measures to minimize weed competition and prepare your soil for seeding.  The seed rates are in the mix descriptions and they are listed in the table below:  recommended seeding rates for each wildflower seed mix or native grass mix.

Explanantion of seed rate ranges and your location and specific site conditions

Project analysis will help determine how much seed you will need.  Each of our seed mixes has its own recommended seeding rate found in the description for that mix (see table below). The recommendation for most mixes will come with a range, such as 10-20 pounds per acre. This means that one pound of seed will cover between 2,000 and 4,000 square feet. (A strip 20 feet wide and 100 feet long equals 2000 square feet.)  So, do you need 10 pounds per acre or 20 pounds? In the southern, especially southeastern areas the weed competition is greater and the highest seed rate is generally recommended.    Additional considerations are given after the table.  Thank you for using your ground to make the world a better place.

Seed Mix Chart gives recommended rates for wildflower or native grass mixes below

Seed Planting Rate for Holland Wildflower Farm Mixes
Seed at the high rate for best results.
Wildflower or Native Grass Mix Name  pounds per acre square feet covered by one pound (at high rate) wildflowers, grass, or both type of mix
Eastern Native Habitat Seed Mix 11 4,000 both habitat
Floodplain Seed Mix 20 2,000 both habitat
Native Upland Meadow Wildlife Seed Mix 20 2,000 both habitat
Wildlife Food Plot Seed not given not given both habitat
Shortgrass Prairie Wildflower Seed Mix 9-18 2,000 wf habitat
Tallgrass Prairie Wildflower Seed Mix 10-20 2,000 wf habitat
Bee Feeder Seed Mix 6-12 2,500 wf pollinator
Bird & Butterfly Wildflower Seed Mix 10-20 2,000 wf pollinator
Bumblebee Buffet Seed Mix 9-18 2,000 wf pollinator
Eastern Pollinator Seed Mix 7-14 2,500 wf pollinator
Honeybee Feed Seed Mix 6-12 4,000 wf pollinator
Hummingbird Seed Mix 5-10 4,000 wf pollinator
Monarch Butterfly Garden Seed Mix 12-24 2,000 wf pollinator
Native Flower Mix for Monarchs 11-22 2,000 wf pollinator
Western Pollinator Native Seed Mix 7-14 4,000 wf pollinator
Cottage Garden Flower Mix 7-14 2,000 wf special use
Deer Resistant Flower Mix 6-12 4,000 wf special use
Eastern Xeriscape Native Wildflower Mix 2-24 2,000 wf special use
Golf Course Mix 20-25 4,000 wf special use
Little Bit Shady Wildflower Seed Mix 15-20 2,000 wf special use
Low Grow Wildflower Mix 10-15 2,500 wf special use
Native Perennial Wildflower Mix 7-14 3,000 wf special use
Shady Golf Course Wildflower Mix 7-14 3,000 wf special use
Western Xeriscape Wildflower Seed Mix 7-14 3,000 wf special use
Rain Garden Grass Seed Mix 15 2,500 grass/sedge special use
Rain Garden Seed Mix 20 2,000 both special use
Wildlife Food Plot Seed

 

not given

 

not given

 

both

 

special use

 

High Plains Native Wildflower Seed Mix 11-22 2,000 wf regional
Intermountain Native Wildflower Mix 7-14 2,500 wf regional
Midwest Native Wildflower Seed Mix 8-16 2,500 wf regional
Mountain Native Wildflower Seed Mix 7-14 3,000 wf regional
Northeast Native Wildflower Mix 9-18 1,000 wf regional
Northwest Native Wildflower Seed Mix 9-18 2,000 wf regional
Southeast Native Wildflower Seed Mix 10-20 2,000 wf regional
Southwest Native Wildflower Seed Mix 6-12 3,000 wf regional
Texas Oklahoma Native Wildflower Mix 11-22 2,000 wf regional
Northeast Native Grass Mix 15 2,500 grass regional
Southeast Native Grass Mix 15 2,500 grass regional
Southern Plains Native Grass Seed Mix 10 2,000 grass regional
Southwest Native Grass Seed Mix 8 5,400 grass regional
Western Native Grass Seed Mix 7 5,000-7,000 grass regional
High Mountain Native Grass Mix 12 2,000 grass habitat
Shortgrass Prairie Grass Seed Mix 6 5,000-7,000 grass habitat
Tallgrass Prairie Grass Mix 10 4,000 grass habitat

Other considerations about Wildflower and Native Grass seeding rates :

  1. Southern states, especially those in the Southeast, should use the highest recommended rate because of the intense weed pressure.
  2. Use the higher rate if you expect high competition from weedy species. Weeds can be a problem if the site was not thoroughly prepared before planting–see our Planting Guide–or if it has a history of weeds (weed seeds in the soil), especially from non-native invasive species.
  3. A higher rate is advised if the site will not be strawed (lightly mulched with straw or excelsior blankets for short term erosion control) after seeding or irrigated during drought in the first year. We recommend using a light mulch because it will hold moisture to the seed.
  4. If your site has rocky or very thin soil, you may want to consider adding a 2-4 in layer of compost to give the seeds enough moisture to take hold of the soil.  Wildflowers and native grass seeds do NOT need fertile soil but they do need to be able to penetrate the initial soil surface before their small but powerful roots begin to take hold.

 

A final note: native grass seed mixes are often seeded with wildflower mixes on the same site. If seeding both grass and wildflowers, you can use a lower rate of native grass mix (no less than half rate).  But do not reduce the rate of wildflower seed because they need the edge on grasses to get an even chance of establishing themselves.  Also use the higher rate of flower seed as it will achieve a more natural meadow look with plenty of food for pollinators.