Replacing lawn with three acres of wildflowers

Written by Doug Oster on .

blog meadow photosErika Wehmeier uses her iPad to take a photo of her wildflower meadow. Photos by Doug Oster

blog meadow coreopsis 3There are many different colors of coreopsis in the meadow.I first heard of about a three acre field of wildflowers in Sewickley back in 2011. Erika and Helge Wehmeier had turned their extensive lawn into a wildflower meadow.

It was an experiment which has now thrived into its fourth season. The spectacle literally stops drivers in their tracks. "No one ever stopped to compliment us on our lawn," Helge said with a laugh.

Every year the meadow changes, this summer tall white daisies and yellow yarrow sway in the summer breeze as the dominant plants in the field.

Early in the season beautiful purple lupines covered the expanse. There are few blooms hanging on along with lots of other flowers.

There's coreopsis, blanket flowers and a myriad of other brightly colored flowers covering the field.

It's a haven for pollinators too, clouds of goldfinches emerge from the blooms when startled and fly up to the safety of the trees bordering the meadow.

Listening to the sound of of the birds singing for joy while feasting on seeds and flower petals is something everyone should experience.

The couple's not sure what's next for their wildflower meadow, in fact their surprised it looks this good four years after the original planting.

Here are the before photos and the original story.

At the very end of this post is the video I did showing the meadow back in 2011.

blog meadow beeHoney bees and other pollinators are drawn to this place.

blog meadow treeIt's hard to show the scope of the meadow in photos.

blog meadow wide oofThis yellow yarrow has become one of the main summer flowers in the field.

blog wildflower meadow purplePurple coneflower is happy growing in consort with the other wildflowers.


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