Step 2 of my Lawn to Meadow project is the step that didn’t happen. In Step 1, I moved all the mulch from the future meadow area onto garden beds in my side yard. I did this so that I could plant wildflower seeds on top of the plain ol’ dirt. When I removed the top layer of mulch, I found a thick layer of rich, black soil where the mulch had decomposed and turned itself into good dirt. Under that thick layer of soil was landscape fabric, and for Step 2 I planned to rip it all up. I went out in my yard with a box cutter and a metal rake, ready to do battle with the landscape fabric. I lost that battle.
When I tried to pull it up, the fabric was disintegrating in my hands in some places, but the biggest issue is that it was covered in 2 or 3 inches of good dirt. Tiny roots had woven themselves into the fabric and there was no way I could move enough of the dirt to pull the fabric up easily. It would have taken days and hours of labor. The decomposed mulch and the fabric were intertwined, so I decided to leave it to decay on its own eventually, as it was already starting to do (it’s been there for years), and work with the 2 or 3 inches of good soil on top of it.
My wildflower research has taught me that wildflowers are tough little buggers that don’t need rich soil. There’s no need to add compost or nutrients to a wildflower bed. I removed the mulch that would have smothered the tiny wildflower seeds, and now I have dirt to plant them on. I found a very helpful video about how to plant wildflower seeds in an area so that they’re spread evenly.
My third step will be ordering my seeds…