Wildflowers add color, symbolism, and interest to the garden while also providing food for crucial pollinators. But sometimes, your wildflowers might not be in the ideal spot. In this article, we’ll explain how to transplant wildflowers.
What Conditions Do Wildflowers Need?
Wildflowers spring up across grasslands and prairies during the summer. These hardy plants thrive in bare, nutrient-poor soil and direct sunlight. To successfully grow wildflowers in your garden, it’s best to replicate these conditions.
Whether you’re growing them in borders or pots, wildflowers need a sunny position. Wildflowers need at least six to eight hours of full sun every day, preferably in the morning. The afternoon sun is more intense than the morning sun and may cause your wildflowers to dry out too much.
Wildflowers need loose soils that are well-draining and nutrient-poor. Plant wildflowers in areas that haven’t been enriched with too much compost or topsoil. Weed the area well and rake the soil until it’s loose and level.
Although most wildflower species are drought-tolerant, they still need water. In climates with regular rainfall, you won’t have to water your wildflowers very often. But if conditions are extremely dry and hot, water your wildflowers once a week.
When to Transplant Wildflowers?
If your wildflowers aren’t growing in the ideal spot, you can transplant them. However, you’ll need to move them at the right time of year.
The best time to transplant wildflowers is whenever they’re not in bloom. This is usually in the spring or fall for biennial and perennial wildflowers. Annual wildflowers can be transplanted while they’re in bloom because they only live for a single year.
However, perennial wildflowers live for several years and need to store energy during the winter. That’s why it’s critical only to move perennial wildflowers in spring or fall when they aren’t in flower. This allows them to recuperate some energy in their new location before the next flowering season.
How Do You Transplant Wildflowers?
Here’s a quick guide to transplanting wildflowers:
- Move your wildflowers during the spring or fall when they’re not in bloom.
- Prepare the new location before moving your wildflower. Dig a hole large enough for the wildflower’s root ball and thoroughly weed the surrounding area.
- Choose a site that’s in a sunny spot with well-draining, nutrient-poor soil.
- Cut around the wildflower using the edge of a spade. Make the first cut a few inches away from the stem and work around the flower in a circle.
- Gently lift the wildflower and the surrounding chunk of soil. Place it in a temporary container for transport.
- Quickly plant the wildflower into its new spot and firm down the soil around it.
- Water the wildflower thoroughly to help it acclimatize. The transplant was successful if the plant looks healthy after a few days.
Transplant wildflowers during the spring or fall when they’re not in flower. When choosing a new location, pick sunny areas with well-draining, nutrient-poor soils. Weed the new location thoroughly before transplanting your wildflower.
For more, see our in-depth guide on how long it takes wildflowers to grow.
Edd is a budding content writer and gardener living in the United Kingdom. He has a bachelor's degree in Creative and Professional Writing and has written for several gardening publications online. He is passionate about nature and sustainability with a focus on gardening and wildlife.