Section 10    Flower Meadow Seeding

 10.1 General

The specifications of Section 10 shall apply to the seeding of ornamental flowering meadows for permanent low maintenance groundcover; Section 10 is not intended as a guide for natural areas or habitat restoration. The seed mixes specified for flower meadow seeding shall include species which are native to North America as well as showy introduced (exotic) species. All labor, equipment, and materials required for the completion of Section 10 shall be furnished by the seeding contractor, unless specified otherwise.

10.2 Location

Flower meadows shall be seeded in open, sunny sites; they shall not be seeded in sites with less than 3/4 day of direct sun exposure, nor in sites that receive frequent foot or vehicular traffic, nor in sites that are prone to flood or drought, nor in sites where the rapid establishment of vegetative soil erosion protection is of primary concern. Flower meadows shall not be seeded in any site where soil or other conditions are generally unfavorable for turfgrass growth or survival.

10.3 Soil Testing

10.3a Soil Testing Requirements

Soil shall be tested by the University of Maryland Soil Testing Laboratory, or another accredited soil test lab for phosphorus (P or P2O5), potassium (K or K2O), calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg), sulfur (S), nitrate (N), soil acidity (pH), soluble salts, and soil organic matter percentage. Soil tests shall be completed and their analyses received and interpreted before flower meadows are seeded. Before flower meadows are seeded into drastically disturbed sites such as subsoil, new road cuts, construction sites, and wherever topsoil has not been replaced, it is recommended that the soil also be tested for zinc, boron, copper, and molybdenum. Soil samples of the upper 4.0 inches of the soil surface shall be used for all soil tests.

10.3b Soil Phosphorus, Potassium, Calcium, Magnesium, and Sulfur

Soil shall be tested for phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and sulfur. Fertility recommendations based on turfgrass requirements for these nutrients shall be obtained from the University of Maryland Soil Testing Laboratory, or another accredited soil test lab, or the Maryland Cooperative Extension Service. Deficiencies of these nutrients shall be corrected in accordance with those recommendations with fertilizer and/or compost either before seeding operations are begun, or at the time of seeding.

10.3c Soil Nitrate

Soil shall be tested for soil nitrate. Fertility recommendations based on turfgrass requirements for nitrate shall be obtained from the U.M. Soil Testing Laboratory, or another accredited soil test lab, or the Maryland Cooperative Extension Service, and soil nitrate levels shall be adjusted in accordance with those recommendations so that soil nitrate is in the moderate or medium level at the time of seeding; flower meadows shall not be seeded in sites with high, or very high soil nitrate levels.

10.3d Soil Organic Matter

Soil shall be tested for percent organic matter. Soil organic matter shall be modified, if necessary, so that it is between 2.0% and 10.0% by volume at the time of seeding when averaged over the upper 4.0 inches of the soil surface. Compost which meets the specifications of Section 4.6 shall be the only

material used as an organic matter supplement for flower meadow seedings; neither wood chips, nor bark, nor sedge peat, nor peat moss nor any other material shall be used to increase soil organic matter.

10.3e Soil Acidity (pH)

Soil shall be tested for soil acidity (pH). The pH of the seeding site, to a depth of 4.0 inches, shall be suitable for flower meadow seeding when the soil pH lies in the range of pH 5.5 to pH 7.0. Soil with pH 6.5 is ideal. When the soil pH is not within pH 5.5 to pH 7.0, modifications to correct soil pH shall be made according to the recommendations of the soil test lab, or the Maryland Cooperative Extension Service, or Table A or Table B, below, as follows: When soil pH is below pH 5.5, see Table A and add the amount of limestone recommended to raise topsoil pH to pH 5.5 to pH 7.5. When topsoil pH is above pH 7.0, see Table B and add the amount of elemental sulfur recommended to lower the topsoil pH to pH 5.5 to pH 7.0.

 

Table A
Pounds of Limestone to Add per 1000 ft2
To Raise Soil pH to 6.5

Soil Texture Class

Original pH  Sand  Loam Clay
4.8 85 140 200
5.0 75  125 175
5.2 65 110 150
5.4 55 95 125
5.6 45 80 100
5.8 35 65 80
6.0 25 50 60
6.2 15 35 40
6.4 5 15 20


Note: Table A shall be used only for limestone which meets the specifications Section 4.3

 

Table B
Pounds of Elemental Sulfur to Add per 1000 ft2
To Reduce Soil pH to 6.5

Soil Texture

Original pH Sandy Soil  Clay Soil
7.5 10-15 20-25
8.0 25-35 35-50
8.5 35-50 40-50


Note: Table B shall be used only for elemental sulfur which meets the specifications of Section 4.4

 

10.3f Soil Soluble Salts

Soil shall be tested for soluble salts concentration. Soluble salts in soils intended for flower meadow seeding shall not exceed 400 parts per million (ppm) at the time of seeding. Modifications to reduce subsoil soluble salts concentrations shall be made according to the recommendations of the soil test lab, or of the Maryland Cooperative Extension Service, or by using Table C, below, as follows: When soil soluble salts exceed 400 ppm or 3.5 ms/cm, add the amount of gypsum recommended in Table C to reduce subsoil soluble salts concentrations below 400 ppm or 3.5 ms/cm.

Table C
Pounds of Gypsum to Add per 1000 ft2
To Reduce Soluble Salts to Recommended Levels

Original Salts Level

 Pounds Gypsum

millisiemens  parts per million (ppm)  per 1000 ft2
8 2500 320
7 1800 230
6 1250 160
5 700 80
4.5

550

40


Note: Table C shall only be used for finely ground gypsum which meets the Specifications of Section 4.5

 

10.4 Site Preparation for Flower Meadows

10.4a Vegetation Removal

.1. Recommendations. Because flower meadow vegetation is often slow to establish, and because many weed species are difficult or impossible to selectively remove from a permanent flower meadow, it is recommended to destroy (i.e., kill) as much of the pre-existing vegetation as possible before seeding. Unless desirable vegetation is present or there are other compelling reasons to conserve the pre-existing vegetation, as much of the pre-existing vegetation as possible should be destroyed as standard practice. Therefore, in the absence of any other agreement between the seeding contractor and other affected parties, the seeding contractor shall destroy over 99% of the pre-existing vegetation groundcover at the seeding site, including saplings, shrubs, weeds, grasses, or other vegetation, and including the viable roots and rhizomes of these plants.

.2. Guarantee. When the procedures specified in Section 10.4a.3. are performed, so that over 99% of the pre-existing vegetation is destroyed prior to seeding, then the seeding contractor may guarantee the success of the seeding. However, if the seeding contractor is contractually precluded from destroying over 99% of the pre-existing vegetation groundcover, then the seeding contractor shall not guarantee the success of the seeding.

.3. Procedures. Unless specified otherwise, the seeding contractor shall use one or some combination of the methods below to destroy over 99% of the pre-existing vegetation at the meadow seeding site:

Tillage One or two tillage operations (i.e., rototilling, disking, etc.) to an average depth of 3.0 to 5.0 inches. For better performance, one or two weeks should be allowed to elapse between tillage operations, so that weed seeds and perennial plant parts may have time to germinate or regrow, and so be destroyed by the second tilling.

Herbicide One or two applications at full label rates of a non-selective herbicide which does not leave an active soil residual, such as glyphosate (e.g., Round-upTM) or glufosinate-ammonium (e.g., FinaleTM). For better performance, one or two weeks should be allowed to elapse between spraying operations, so that weed seeds and perennial plant parts may have time to germinate or regrow, and so be destroyed by the second spraying.

10.4b Soil Preparation

.1. Prep for broadcast and hydraulic seeding. If the site will be seeded by broadcast seeding methods or hydraulic seeding methods, the soil shall be tilled to an average depth of 3.0 to 5.0 inches. Vegetation may have been previously destroyed by spraying with glyphosate or glufosinate-ammonium, according to the specifications of Section 10.3. However, tillage performed under this section may be sufficient to destroy weeds and prepare soil in a single operation. All rocks and other debris larger than 3.0 inches in diameter shall be removed from the soil surface. The site shall be leveled so that no irregularities greater than 2.0 inches above or below grade per linear foot are present. The soil at the time of seeding shall be firm, and the surface shall be loose and open, so that flower meadow seeds may readily fall into soil spaces.

.2. Prep for drill seeding. If the site will be seeded by drill seeding methods, it is recommended that the soil be tilled to an average depth of 3.0 to 5.0 inches, but drilling seed without soil preparation is acceptable. In sites where no tillage shall be performed, it is assumed that vegetation will have been previously destroyed by spraying with glyphosate or glufosinate-ammonium, according to the specifications of Section 10.4a. However, if weed populations are very low, drill seeding without prior tillage or spraying may be possible. If tillage prior to drill seeding is performed, then all rocks and other debris larger than 3.0 inches in diameter shall be removed from the soil surface. The site shall be leveled so that no irregularities greater than 2.0 inches above or below grade per linear foot are present.

10.5 Seeding Seasons, Seeding Methods, and Mulches

10.5a Flower Meadow Seeding Seasons

Flower meadows shall be seeded from 15 September to 31 October (Fall), and from 15 March to 31 April (Spring). If irrigation will be supplied as necessary through the month of June, flower meadows may be seeded from 1 May to 31 May.

10.5b Flower Meadow Seeding Methods

Flower meadows shall be seeded with broadcast spreaders (Section 10.6), or with specially designed drill seeders (Section 10.7), or by hydraulic seeding methods (Section 10.8); flower meadows shall be seeded by one of these methods only. Because many flower meadow species are less able than turfgrasses to penetrate and establish through hydraulic fiber mulch, the use of hydraulic seeding methods for flower meadow establishment shall be approached with caution. Depending upon the seeding methods and mulch materials chosen, the specified seeding rates may be substantially increased in order to ensure equivalent rates of plant establishment; seeding rate adjustments are specified in Section 10.6, Section 10.7, and Section 10.8. Seeding rate adjustments shall be made by the seeding contractor as appropriate for the seeding methods and mulch application materials/methods.

10.5c Flower Meadow Seed Mulches

The composition of hydraulic mulch products shall conform to the specifications of Section 7.2a-c and Section 7.3, and the use of these materials in conjunction with straw shall conform to the definitions of Section 10.5 as well as the methods specified in Section 10.6, or Section 10.7, or Section 10.8, as appropriate. Seed mulches for flower meadow seedings shall consist of one or more of the following materials, which shall be applied at rates according to the seeding methods selected: straw, tackifier or mulch binder, wood cellulose fiber, and wood fiber. Erosion control blankets shall not be used.

10.5d Use of Straw as Mulch

.1. General. Straw is the preferred seed mulch for flower meadow seeding. Whether straw is used an option to aid seed establishment, or whether it is used as specified to control soil erosion, only Class AA, Class A, and Class B straw shall be used for flower meadow seeding. The composition of straw used as a flower meadow seed mulch shall conform all parts of Section 10.5d, and its use shall conform to the specifications of Section 10.6, Section 10.7, and Section 10.8. Class A straw is generally recommended; Class AA straw is recommended when the addition of native grasses such as broomsedge is desirable. See Section 7.2 for more information about straw and hay. See Section 7.4 for more information about mulch application.

.2. Choice of straw. The use of clean straw with a low content of viable cereal grains and viable weed seed is important. Only class AA, Class A, and Class B straw shall be used as a seed mulch for flower meadow seeding; neither Class C straw nor hay shall be used as a seed mulch.

.3. Classes of straw.

Class AA Straw may be used for flower meadow seeding. Class AA straw shall be specially grown for use as a seeding mulch, and shall be composed entirely of the air-dried stems and leaves of native grasses such as little bluestem, broomsedge, and other species which are compatible with flower meadow seeding sites (see Section 10.9g for information about acceptable grass species). Class AA straw may contain any amount of the viable seed of the native grass species from which it is derived.

Class A Straw may be used as a mulch for flower meadow seeding. Class A straw shall consist entirely of the straw of wheat, barley, oats, or cereal rye which has been specially grown for use as a seed mulch, and which is guaranteed by the producer of the straw to contain a maximum of 1.0 ounce of viable wheat, barley, oats, or cereal rye seed per standard small bale of straw (approx. 40 lbs. of straw).

Class B Straw may be used for flower meadow seeding, but is not recommended. Class B straw shall be entirely composed of the air-dried stems and leaves of wheat, barley, oats, or cereal rye. Class B straw shall be thoroughly threshed so that it contains more than 1.0 ounce, but less than 8.0 ounces (up to 0.5 lbs.) of viable wheat, barley, oats, or cereal rye seed per standard small bale of straw (approx. 40 lbs. of straw per bale).

.4. Physical condition of straw. Straw shall be bright in color, and shall not be wet, musty, moldy, caked, decayed, or dusty. Straw should be easily loosened when removed from the bale, and able to be uniformly spread by hand or with the use of a straw blower.

.5. Weed content of straw. Straw used as mulch in flower meadow seeding sites shall be free of the seeds, rhizomes, or other viable parts of the following weeds:

Balloonvine Canada Thistle Johnsongrass & hybrids Serrated Tussock
Bermudagrass Curly Thistle Musk Thistle Sicklepod
Bindweed Dodder Phragmites Spurred Anoda
Corn cockle Giant Foxtail Plumeless Thistle Wild Garlic
Cocklebur Horse Nettle Quackgrass Wild Onion

.6. Chemical residues in straw. Straw shall contain no materials or chemicals in concentrations which inhibit the germination or growth of meadow flowers or grasses when the straw is applied according to the rates and methods specified in Section 10.

10.6 Broadcast Seeding of Flower Meadows

10.6a Broadcast Seeding Equipment and Seed Mixing Aids

When flower meadow seed is broadcast over the soil surface, the flower meadow seed shall be uniformly mixed and spread with a fertilizer spreader or similar equipment equipped with an agitator to ensure continuous mixing. A non-toxic material such as calcined clay (Kitty LitterTM, or similar product), fine cocoa shell mulch, coarse vermiculite, or coarse perlite may be added to the flower meadow seed mix at the time of seeding to reduce seed segregation and to improve seed distribution.

10.6b Seed Incorporation and Soil Rolling after Broadcast Seeding

After seeding, the seed shall be raked or dragged into the soil surface to an average depth of 0.25 inch. When the soil is in a loose or fluffy condition, the seedbed shall be rolled with a weighted roller, so that the flower meadow seed is firmly pressed into the soil.

10.6c Mulching with Straw after Broadcast Seeding

.1. General methods. On level or gently rolling sites the use of straw is optional. Where soil erosion may be expected, straw shall be blown or otherwise applied uniformly over the surface of the seeded area at a rate of 1.0 to 2.0 tons per acre. The straw shall cover a minimum of 80% of the soil surface in a layer from 0.5 to 2.5 inches thick; up to 10% of the area may be covered with straw over 2.5 inches thick; up to 10% of the area may be covered with straw less than 0.5 inches thick. The recommended rate (1.0x) of flower meadow seed shall be seeded; 10.0 to 20.0 lbs. (PLS) of seed per acre, or 0.23 to 0.46 lbs. (PLS) per 1000 ft2. Where slopes with steepness over 4:1 are present (erodible slopes), straw at the rate of 2.0 tons per acre shall be applied and secured from wind and/or water erosion by one of the methods described below, and the seeding rate shall be increased as specified.

.2. Straw anchoring. Straw shall be secured with a mulch anchoring tool, such as a straw-crimper, by pressing the straw to a minimum average depth of 2.0 inches below the soil surface. When this method is used, the recommended rate (1.0x) of seed shall be seeded; 10.0 to 20.0 lbs. (PLS) of seed shall be applied per acre, or 0.23 to 0.46 lbs. (PLS) per 1000 ft2.

.3. Tackifier and/or liquid mulch binder. Straw shall be secured with tackifier and/or liquid mulch binder when the tackifier or liquid mulch binder is applied over the straw in a separate operation with hydraulic seeding equipment at the minimum rate recommended by the manufacturer, so that a minimum of 80% of the straw is covered by the tackifier or liquid mulch binder. When this method is used, the recommended rate (1.0x) rate of seed shall be seeded; 10.0 to 20.0 lbs. (PLS) of seed shall be applied per acre, or 0.23 to 0.46 pounds (PLS) per 1000 ft2.

.4. Wood cellulose fiber or wood fiber + wood cellulose fiber hydraulic mulch.. Straw shall be secured with wood cellulose fiber or wood fiber + wood cellulose fiber hydraulic mulch when the mulch is applied in a separate operation over the straw with hydraulic seeding equipment at the rate of 150 pounds per acre, so that a minimum of 80% of the straw is covered by the hydraulic mulch. When this method is used, the seeding rate shall be increased to 1.5 times (1.5x) the recommended seeding rate; 15.0 to 30 lbs. (PLS) of seed shall be applied per acre, or 0.34 to 0.69 lbs. per 1000 ft2.

10.7 Drill Seeding of Flower Meadows

10.7a Drill Seeding Equipment

When flower meadow seed is directly placed into the soil by drill seeding methods, a drill, disk, or slot seeder that is manufactured specifically for flower meadow seed shall be used. The seed of each species shall be obtained unmixed, and shall be sorted by size as directed by the manufacturer of the seeding equipment. All instructions provided by the manufacturer of the seeding equipment shall be strictly observed and followed by the contractor. If the seeding equipment is not equipped with a heavy roller, so that the soil is left in a loose or fluffy condition after seeding, the seedbed shall be rolled with a weighted roller in a separate operation, so that the flower meadow seed is firmly pressed into the soil.

10.7b Mulching with Straw after Drill Seeding

.1. General methods. On level or gently rolling sites the use of straw is optional. Where soil erosion may be expected, straw shall be blown or otherwise applied uniformly over the surface of the seeded area at a rate of 1.0 to 2.0 tons per acre. The straw shall cover a minimum of 80% of the soil surface in a layer from 0.5 to 2.5 inches thick; up to 10% of the area may be covered with straw over 2.5 inches thick; up to 10% of the area may be covered with straw less than 0.5 inches thick. The recommended rate (1.0x) of flower meadow seed shall be seeded; 10.0 to 20.0 lbs. (PLS) of seed per acre, or 0.23 to 0.46 lbs. (PLS) per 1000 ft2. Where slopes with steepness over 4:1 are present (erodible slopes), straw at the rate of 2.0 tons per acre shall be applied and secured from wind and/or water erosion by one of the methods described below, and the seeding rate shall be increased as specified.

.2. Straw anchoring. Straw shall be secured with a mulch anchoring tool, such as a straw-crimper, by pressing the straw to a minimum average depth of 2.0 inches below the soil surface. When this method is used, the recommended rate (1.0x) of seed shall be seeded; 10.0 to 20.0 lbs. (PLS) of seed shall be applied per acre, or 0.23 to 0.46 lbs. (PLS) per 1000 ft2.

.3. Tackifier and/or liquid mulch binder. Straw shall be secured with tackifier or liquid mulch binder when the tackifier or liquid mulch binder is applied over the straw in a separate operation with hydraulic seeding equipment at the minimum rate recommended by the manufacturer, so that a minimum of 80% of the straw is covered by the tackifier or liquid mulch binder. When this method is used, the recommended rate (1.0x) rate of seed shall be seeded; 10.0 to 20.0 lbs. (PLS) of seed shall be applied per acre , or 0.23 to 0.46 pounds (PLS) per 1000 ft2.

.4. Wood cellulose fiber or wood fiber + wood cellulose fiber hydraulic mulch. Straw shall be secured with wood cellulose fiber or wood fiber + wood cellulose fiber hydraulic mulch when the mulch is applied in a separate operation over the straw with hydraulic seeding equipment at the rate of 150 lbs./acre, so that a minimum of 80% of the straw is covered by the hydraulic mulch. When this method is used, the seeding rate shall be increased to 1.5 times (1.5x) the recommended seeding rate; 15.0 to 30 lbs. (PLS) of seed shall be applied per acre, or 0.34 to 0.69 lbs. per 1000 ft2.

10.8 Hydraulic Seeding of Flower Meadows

10.8a Hydraulic Seeding Equipment and Methods

Hydraulic seeding methods shall be defined to include the distribution of seed through a pump under pressure with equipment that continuously agitates the flower meadow seed in a suspension (slurry) of water. Because these methods often reduce seedling establishment, hydraulic seeding is discouraged.

10.8b Hydraulic Seeding Mixtures

In addition to seed and water, the hydraulic seeding suspension (slurry) may also include pulverized limestone and/or fertilizer and/or hydraulic mulch. Hydraulic mulch products shall contain wood fiber, wood cellulose fiber, or a combination of these materials as the hydraulic mulch product (wood fiber + wood cellulose fiber hydraulic mulch). The choice and use of hydraulic mulch materials significantly affects the germination and establishment of flower meadow seedlings; flower meadow seeding rates shall be modified in accordance with one of the methods specified in Section 10.8d.1-.6 when hydraulic seeding methods are used to distribute flower meadow seed.

10.8c Limestone and Fertilizer in Hydraulic Seeding Mixtures

When limestone is applied with seed in the hydraulic seeding slurry, the amount of limestone included shall not exceed 50 lbs. per 1000 ft2, or 2,200 pounds per acre. Pulverized limestone or pelletized limestone shall be the only limestone used for this application: neither granulated limestone, nor burnt lime, nor hydrated lime shall be used for hydraulic seeding. When fertilizer and/or limestone is included in the hydraulic seeding slurry with seed, the maximum combined weight of fertilizer and limestone included in the hydraulic seeding slurry shall not exceed 150 pounds per 100 gallons of water. When soil test results recommend the application of more than 2,200 lbs. of limestone per acre, or more than 90 lbs. of soluble nitrogen per acre, the required amounts of these materials which are in excess of these limits shall be applied with appropriate drop or rotary spreader equipment in one or more separate operations.

10.8d Soil Preparation and Hydraulic Seeding Procedures

.1. General methods. When flower meadow seed is spread by hydraulic seeding methods, the seedbed shall be firmed with a weighted roller or other suitable equipment prior to seeding, so that the soil is firmed and not in a loose or fluffy condition at the time of seeding. Flower meadows shall be seeded by one of the following methods:

.2. Level sites with/without straw, and erodible slopes with crimped straw. Flower meadow seed shall be distributed over the soil surface in a suspension (slurry) of water with hydraulic seeding equipment at the recommended (1.0x) flower meadow seeding rate; 10.0 to 20.0 lbs. (PLS) of flower meadow seed per acre, or 0.23 to 0.46 lbs. (PLS) per 1000 ft2. Up to 150 pounds per acre of wood fiber, wood cellulose fiber, or wood fiber + wood cellulose fiber hydraulic mulch may be included in the hydraulic seeding mixture to improve seed mixing, suspension, and application. On level or gently sloping sites, the use of straw and crimping equipment is optional. Where soil erosion may be expected, straw shall be blown or otherwise applied uniformly over the surface of the seeded area at a rate of 1.0 to 2.0 tons per acre. The straw shall cover a minimum of 80% of the soil surface in a layer from 0.5 to 2.5 inches thick; up to 10% of the area may be covered with straw over 2.5 inches thick; up to 10% of the area may be covered with straw less than 0.5 inches thick. Where slopes with steepness over 4:1 are present (erodible slopes), the application rate of straw shall be 2.0 tons per acre, and the straw shall be crimped to a depth of 2.0 inches into the soil surface with equipment designed for that purpose.

.3. Straw applied over seed and secured with tackifier, mulch binder, or hydraulic mulch. Flower meadow seed shall be distributed over the soil surface in a suspension (slurry) of water with hydraulic seeding equipment at 1.5 times (1.5x) the recommended flower meadow seeding rate; 15.0 to 30.0 lbs. (PLS) of flower meadow seed per acre, or 0.34 to 0.69 lbs. (PLS) per 1000 ft2. Up to 150 pounds per acre of wood fiber, wood cellulose fiber, or wood fiber + wood cellulose fiber hydraulic mulch may be included in the hydraulic seeding mixture to improve seed mixing, suspension, and application. On level or gently sloping sites, the use of straw is optional. Where soil erosion may be expected, straw shall be blown or otherwise applied uniformly over the surface of the seeded area at a rate of 1.0 to 2.0 tons per acre. The straw shall cover a minimum of 80% of the soil surface in a layer from 0.5 to 2.5 inches thick; up to 10% of the area may be covered with straw over 2.5 inches thick; up to 10% of the area may be covered with straw less than 0.5 inches thick. Where slopes with steepness over 4:1 are present (erodible slopes), the application rate of straw shall be increased to 2.0 tons per acre, and tackifier or liquid mulch binder shall be applied over the straw in a separate operation at the minimum rate recommended by the manufacturer, or up to 150 pounds per acre of wood cellulose fiber, or wood fiber + wood cellulose fiber hydraulic mulch may shall be applied over the straw to secure it from wind or water erosion.

.4. Wood fiber or wood fiber + wood cellulose fiber hydraulic mulch applied over seed. Flower meadow seed shall be distributed over the soil surface in a suspension (slurry) of water with hydraulic seeding equipment at 1.5 times (1.5x) the recommended flower meadow seed rates; 15.0 to 30.0 lbs. (PLS) of flower meadow seed per acre, or 0.34 to 0.69 lbs. (PLS) per 1000 ft2. Up to 150 pounds per acre of wood fiber, wood cellulose fiber, or wood fiber + wood cellulose fiber hydraulic mulch may be included in the hydraulic seeding mixture to improve seed mixing, suspension, and application. Wood fiber hydraulic mulch, or wood fiber + wood cellulose fiber hydraulic mulch with a minimum of 70% wood fiber, shall be applied over the surface of the seeded area at the minimum rate recommended by the manufacturer in a separate operation, so that a minimum of 80% of the soil surface and flower meadow seed shall be covered with wood fiber or wood fiber + wood cellulose fiber hydraulic mulch.

.5. Wood cellulose fiber hydraulic mulch applied over seed. Flower meadow seed shall be distributed over the soil surface in a suspension (slurry) of water with hydraulic seeding equipment at 2.0 times (2.0x) the recommended flower meadow seed rates; 20.0 to 40.0 lbs. (PLS) of flower meadow seed per acre, or 0.46 to 0.92 lbs. (PLS) per 1000 ft2. Up to 150 pounds per acre of wood fiber, wood cellulose fiber, or wood fiber + wood cellulose fiber hydraulic mulch may be included in the hydraulic seeding mixture to improve seed mixing, suspension, and application. Wood cellulose fiber hydraulic mulch, or wood fiber + wood cellulose fiber hydraulic mulch with a minimum of 31% wood cellulose fiber, shall be applied over the surface of the seeded area at the minimum rate recommended by the manufacturer in a separate operation, so that a minimum of 80% of the soil surface and flower meadow seed shall be covered with wood cellulose fiber or wood fiber + wood cellulose fiber hydraulic mulch.

10.9 Flower Meadow Seed Mixtures

10.9a Seed Mixture Requirements

A flower meadow seed mixture shall be suitable for all uses specified under Section 10, if the flower meadow seed mixture is composed of any combination of herbaceous broadleaf flower meadow species that are mixed in proportions and seeded as specified in Section 10.9b-g, below.

10.9b Amount of Seed

.1. Seeding rate modification based on seeding/mulching methods. Table J and Table K, show recommended flower meadow species with a range of seeding rates that are based on Fall seeding (Table J) or Spring seeding (Table K). Flower meadows shall be seeded at these rates only for a limited combination of seeding/mulching methods. Flower meadow seedlings are sensitive to the choice and use of mulches; refer to Section 10.6 (broadcast seeding), 10.7 (drill seeding), and 10.8 (hydraulic seeding) for requirements for increasing flower meadow seed application rates based on seeding method and mulch materials.

.2. Flower meadow seeding rates.

1.0x A minimum of 10.0 pounds (PLS) of flower meadow seed and a maximum of 20.0 pounds (PLS) of flower meadow seed shall be applied per acre, or 0.23 to 0.46 lbs. (PLS) per 1000 ft2, as a baseline recommended seeding rate (1.0x), which shall be the seeding rate when flower meadows are seeded according to Section 10.6c.1., 10.6c.2., 10.6c.3, 10.7c.1., 10.7c.2., 10.7c.3., and 10.8d.2.

1.5x A minimum of 15.0 lbs. (PLS) of flower meadow seed and a maximum of 30.0 lbs. (PLS) of flower meadow seed shall be applied per acre, or 0.34 to 0.68 pounds (PLS) per 1000 ft2, which is 1.5 times (1.5x) the recommended seeding rate, when flower meadows are seeded according to Section 10.6c.4., 10.7c.4., 10.8d.3., and 10.8d.4.

2.0x A minimum of 20.0 pounds (PLS) of flower meadow seed and a maximum of 40.0 pounds (PLS) of flower meadow seed shall be applied per acre, or 0.46 to 0.92 lbs. (PLS) per 1000 ft2, which is 2.0 times (2.0x) the recommended seeding rate, when meadows are seeded according to Section 10.8d.5.

10.9c Recommended Species

A minimum of 80% of the species in a flower meadow mix shall be recommended species, which are selected from and seeded at the rates shown in Table J or Table K, below, according to the season of seeding. No recommended species shall be seeded above the dont exceed limit.

Table J
Flower Meadows Species for Fall Seeding (15 September to 31 October)
 Pure Live Seed in Pounds per Acre

Perennials Recommended Range Dont Exceed Comments
Perennial Gaillardia 1.50 - 2.50 4.00 North America. Long-lived.
Puple Coneflower 1.35 - 2.25 3.60 North America. Long-lived.
Lanceleaf Coreopsis, dwf./std. 50/50 mix 1.20 - 2.00 3.20 North America. Long-lived.
Dames Rocket 1.10 - 1.90 3.00 Eurasia. Short-lived, persists
Siberian Wallflower 1.10 - 1.90 3.00 Eurasia. Short-lived, persists.
Sweet William 1.00 - 1.60 2.60 Eurasia. Long-lived.
Black-eyed Susan 0.30 - 0.50 0.80 Md. flower. Long-lived.
Shasta Daisy 0.22 - 0.38 0.60 Eurasia. Long-lived.
New England Aster 0.15 - 0.25 0.40 North America. Long-lived.
White / Pink Yarrow 0.07 - 0.13 0.20 Eurasia. Long-lived.

   

Annuals Recommended Range Dont Exceed Comments
California Poppy 1.35 - 2.25 3.60 California. Persists.
Babys Breath 0.90 - 1.25 2.40 Eurasia. Rarely returns.
Queen Annes Lace 0.45 - 0.75 1.20 Eurasia. Returns for years.
Cornflower, dwarf blue 0.45 - 0.75 1.20 Eurasia. Often returns for years.
Pink Catchfly 0.38 - 0.63 1.00 Eurasia. Rarely returns.
Lemon Mint 0.30 - 0.50 0.80 Mexico. Often returns.
Corn Poppy 0.22 - 0.38 0.60 Eurasia. Rarely returns.
Baby Blue-eyes 0.15 - 0.25 0.40 California. Rarely returns.
Plains Coreopsis, dwf./std. 50/50 mix 0.15 - 0.25 0.40 North America. Often returns.
Forget-me-not 0.07 - 0.13 0.20 Eurasia. Often returns for years.
Ox-eye Daisy 0.07 - 0.13 0.20 Eurasia. Often returns for years.

 

Table K
Flower Meadows Species for Spring Seeding (15 March to 31 April)
 Pure Live Seed in Pounds per Acre

Perennials Recommended Range Dont Exceed Comments
Perennial Gaillardia 1.35 - 2.25 3.60 North America. Long-lived.
Lanceleaf Coreopsis, dwf./std. 50/50 mix 1.20 - 2.00 3.20 North America. Long-lived.
Dames Rocket 1.35 - 2.25 3.60 Eurasia. Short-lived, persists
Siberian Wallflower 1.10 - 1.90 3.00 Eurasia. Short-lived, persists.
Lanceleaf Coreopsis, dwf./std. 50/50 mix 0.90 - 1.50 2.40 North America. Long-lived.
Puple Coneflower 0.75 - 1.25 2.00 North America. Long-lived.
Sweet William 0.67 - 1.13 1.80 Eurasia. Long-lived.
Shasta Daisy 0.30 - 0.50 0.80 Eurasia. Long-lived.
Black-eyed Susan 0.23 - 0.38 0.60 Md. flower. Long-lived.
New England Aster 0.15 - 0.25 0.40 North America. Long-lived.
White / Pink Yarrow 0.11 - 0.19 0.30 Eurasia. Long-lived.

 

Annuals Recommended Range Dont Exceed Comments
California Poppy 1.05 - 1.75 2.80 California. Persists.
Cornflower, dwarf blue 0.80 - 1.25 2.00 Eurasia. Often returns for years.
African Daisy 0.60 - 1.00 1.60 South Africa. Rarely returns.
Pink Catchfly 0.53 - 0.88 1.40 Eurasia. Rarely returns.
Queen Annes Lace 0.45 - 0.75 1.20 Eurasia. Returns for years.
Sulphur Cosmos 0.30 - 0.50 0.80 Mexico. Rarely returns.
Lemon Mint 0.30 - 0.50 0.80 Mexico. Often returns.
Cosmos 0.23 - 0.38 0.60 Mexico. Rarely returns.
Baby Blue-eyes 0.15 - 0.25 0.40 California. Rarely returns.
Plains Coreopsis, dwf./std. 50/50 mix 0.15 - 0.25 0.40 North America. Often returns.
Spurred Snapdragon 0.15 - 0.25 0.40 Eurasia. Rarely returns.
Forget-Me-Not 0.11 - 0.19 0.30 Eurasia. Often returns for years.
Ox-eye Daisy 0.11 - 0.19 0.30 Eurasia. Often returns for years.

 

10.9d Optional Species

A maximum total of 2.0 pounds per acre of flower meadow seed, or a total of 10.0% of a flower meadow seed mix seeded at 20.0 pounds per acre, may be composed of any combination of the following optional species: clarkia, godetia, rocket larkspur, blue flax, scarlet flax, maltese cross, dwarf California poppy, rose mallow, tree mallow, dense blazing star, gayfeather, calendula, tahoka daisy, prairie aster, painted daisy, annual gaillardia, chickory, Mexican hat, clasping coneflower, gold yarrow, Maximilian sunflower, crimson clover, nasturtium, strawflower, johnny-jump-up, butterfly weed, scarlet sage.

10.9e Other Species

A maximum total of 0.40 pounds per acre of flower meadow seed, or a total of 2.0% of a flower meadow seed mix seeded at 20.0 pounds per acre, may be composed of other species. Other species are those herbaceous (flower meadow) species which are not included in Table J or Table K (recommended species) or in Section 10.9d (optional species), and which are included in the flower meadow seed mix. Other Species may not be species which are excluded in Section 10.9f, below.

10.9f Excluded Species

Certain species shall not be included in a flower meadow seed mixture. No seed shall be included in a flower meadow seed mixture of red clover, white clover, sweet clover, crown vetch, common vetch, hairy vetch, Korean lespedeza, sericea lespedeza, birdsfoot trefoil, purple loosestrife; nor seed of any plant prohibited or restricted by Maryland Seed Law such as corn cockle, balloonvine, thistles; nor seed of any grass not included in Section 10.9g; nor seed of any plant of a type or habit that would reasonably preclude its use in a permanent low-maintenance ornamental flower meadow.

10.9g Grasses

The inclusion of grass in a flower meadow seed mix is optional; grass seed shall not be calculated or considered a part of the flower meadow seed. If grass is seeded with a flower meadow seed mix, the seed of any combination of the following grasses may be seeded in the Spring or Fall season: broomsedge, little bluestem, Virginia wildrye, slender wildrye, bluejoint, junegrass, tufted hairgrass, poverty oats grass, bottlebrush grass, sweet vernal grass, tall fescue, sheep fescue, hard fescue, annual ryegrass, perennial ryegrass. The total amount of grass planted with a flower meadow seed mixture shall not exceed 2.0 lbs. of pure live seed (PLS) per acre.

10.10 Irrigation After Seeding

Flower meadows shall be seeded when a minimum of 1/4 inch of natural rainfall is expected or when a minimum of 1/4 inch of irrigation will be received within 10 days after seeding. If sufficient natural rainfall is not received within 10 days, the new seeding shall be irrigated with a minimum of 1/4 inch of water, or so that water penetrates the soil to a uniform minimum depth of 4.0 inches.

10.11 Site Protection, Damage Repair, and Reseeding

10.11a Site Protection

It shall be the responsibility of the seeding contractor to install signs, flagging, etc. at the perimeter of the flower meadow seeding site immediately after its completion, which shall serve to notify foot and vehicular traffic that a sensitive area may be damaged by their entry. The seeding contractor shall not be financially or otherwise held liable to repair a flower meadow seeding site that is damaged by the entrance of such traffic when the site has been appropriately designated with signs, flagging, etc. at its perimeter (see Disclaimer, Section 10.14).

10.11b Repairs to Damaged Areas

.1. General. The seeding contractor shall apply flower meadow seed and mulch materials as specified in Section 10, and ensure that mulch materials are secured to the soil as required so that they shall not be blown, washed, or otherwise removed from the seeding site, and so that nearby streams and other areas shall be protected from soil, fertilizer, compost, and the intrusion of unwanted seed.

.2. Damage repair and reseeding. In the event of heavy rain, wind, or other natural event that causes damage to the flower meadow seeding site which is of a kind or type that may have been anticipated or prevented by the seeding contractor, such as through the use of mulch, staples, tackifier, etc., then the seeding contractor shall be obliged to make repairs limited to the damaged areas within the site, including regrading, reseeding, and remulching, so that the flower meadow seeding site is restored to a condition acceptable according to the specifications of Section 10.

.3. Repairs to nearby areas. In the event of heavy rain, etc. that causes damage to the flower meadow seeding site, as described in Section 10.11b.2., above, and which also causes damage to nearby areas, as may be evidenced by soil deposition, straw deposition, etc. on the surfaces of the nearby areas, then the seeding contractor shall be obliged to make repairs to the damaged nearby areas, so that the nearby areas shall be restored to a condition substantially similar to their condition before the damaging event.

.4. Special limitations. The seeding contractor shall not be obliged, financially or otherwise, to regrade, reseed, remulch, or make any other repairs to the flower meadow seeding site, or to any nearby areas, when there is evidence that the damage caused to the site was substantially due to water, soil, or other materials which passed into the flower meadow seeding site from an area which was not stabilized or under the control or supervision of the seeding contractor. Examples of situations which shall void the responsibility of the seeding contractor to repair the flower meadow seeding site and nearby areas shall include the failure of responsible parties to provide effective groundcover, spillways, drainage diversions, water settlements, silt fence, etc. for areas which drain into the site, which would have prevented significant damage to the flower meadow seeding site and nearby areas.

10.12 Clean Up

Grading stakes, stones, trash, and other debris which may hinder the maintenance or detract from the appearance of the newly seeded flower meadow shall be removed from the site when seeding operations are completed. Soil, straw, hydraulic fiber mulch, fertilizer, compost, limestone, elemental sulfur, gypsum, and other debris shall be removed from paved areas as soon as possible after spreading and seeding operations are completed. Clean up operations shall be completed before acceptance is given.

10.13 Acceptance

10.13a Acceptance of Materials

The seeding contractor shall inform all affected parties of the composition of the flower meadow seed mixes, fertilizer, compost, limestone, elemental sulfur, gypsum, and seed mulch materials which are intended for application at the seeding site before any of these materials are applied at the site; acknowledgment of acceptance of these materials shall be given by the owner, general contractor, landscape architect, or other person(s) authorized to make such a decision before spreading or seeding operations are begun. Labels and other material identification pertaining to the materials which are applied shall be retained by the seeding contractor for a minimum of 90 days after the completion of spreading and seeding operations.

10.13b Acceptance of Performance

Acknowledgment of acceptable performance shall be given by the owner, general contractor, landscape architect, or other person(s) authorized to inspect the flower meadow seeding site upon the satisfactory completion of each Subsection of Section 10. The flower meadow seeding site shall be inspected within 24 hours of the completion of each Subsection, as indicated by the seeding contractor, unless specified otherwise. The seeding contractor shall give notification when all Subsections of Section 10 have been completed; final acceptance and payment shall be made within 24 hours of such notification, or within the time period specified in the contract.

10.14 Disclaimer

10.14a Damage

The seeding contractor shall not be financially or otherwise held liable to repair damages incurred to the flower meadow seeding site as a result of materials not applied under the supervision of the seeding contractor, nor by vandalism, nor by acts of God. The seeding contractor shall not be financially or otherwise held liable to reseed, remulch, repair or otherwise amend the seeding site as a result of the use of flower meadow seed mixtures, seed mulches, fertilizer, compost, soil amendments, or other products which are labeled in error or which are otherwise not in accordance with the label or description provided with them by the manufacturer or distributor of the products, when they are applied by the seeding contractor in good faith, in accordance with their label or description.

10.14b Hazards

It shall be recognized that the flower meadow seeding site is a construction zone not under the ownership or legal control of the seeding contractor, and as such may present hazards to persons or property which enter the site. The seeding contractor specifically disclaims any and all responsibility for the safety and security of persons or property which may enter the flower meadow seeding site before the seeding contractor has begun work or when work is underway or at any time after work has been completed, and without regard to whether such entry is legal or otherwise. The seeding contractor shall assume no responsibility for personal injury or property damage, nor be subject to any claims of negligence, when the seeding contractor has performed work according to the specifications of MSA-GS-99, as mutually agreed, or has applied products or materials according to the recommendations of their manufacturer or distributor.

10.15 Guarantee

10.15a General Guarantee

The seeding contractor shall guarantee that all flower meadow seed mixtures, seed mulches, fertilizer, compost, limestone, elemental sulfur, gypsum and other materials and methods used at the flower meadow seeding site shall be selected and used under the supervision of the seeding contractor according to the specifications of Section 10, unless specified otherwise, and that those materials and methods shall be appropriate for the site and the intended use of the site.

10.15b Term and Limitations of Guarantee

Although a minimum of 10% living flower meadow groundcover is often established within 3 months after seeding, the seeding contractor shall not guarantee the establishment of any percentage of living groundcover at the seeding site within any timeframe, except as may be contractually agreed. When seeding operations are completed outside the times specified in Table J or Table K in Section 10.9, because of contractual obligations or because of delays not caused by the seeding contractor, the seeding contractor shall not guarantee the success of the seeding. When the seeding contractor is contractually precluded from eliminating over 99% of the pre-existing vegetation groundcover prior to seeding, as described in Section 10.4, the seeding contractor shall not guarantee the success of the seeding. The seeding contractor shall guarantee that the flower meadow seeding shall resist significant damage from soil erosion for a period of two (2) months after seeding is completed.

10.15c Special Guarantees

The seeding contractor shall guarantee that appropriate efforts shall be taken to limit soil erosion and the loss of seed and mulch materials which are applied by the seeding contractor according to the specifications of Section 10. The seeding contractor shall endeavor to alert parties responsible for the control of water and/or soil erosion outside the flower meadow seeding site which may adversely affect the success of the seeding; however, the seeding contractor shall not be obliged to identify, or report upon, or render any inadequacies fit to perform any particular purpose.

10.16 Payment

The seeding contractor shall give notification upon the completion of Section 10; the flower meadow seeding site shall be inspected within 24 hours of such notification, and payment shall be made at that time, or as specified in the contract. When payment is not received within the specified time period, the seeding contractor may void any guarantees related to Section 9, and may seek appropriate legal remedies.