Bringing wildflowers back

The National Wildflower Centre (NWC) is devising new programmes with the bold aims of reversing ecological decline and bringing wildflowers back into the UK’s living culture.

This is a response to the challenge of the world’s sixth great extinction, showing how policy can be changed and challenging what 'green infrastructure' is in the modern world.

‘By bringing back the wildflowers we initiate a wonderful regenerative process that supports hosts of other species and brings delight to thousands of people.' Mike Maunder, Eden’s Director of Life Sciences

Creative conservation projects

The NWC is establishing creative conservation projects in urban and rural areas across the country and using wildflowers as a conduit for new cultural ecology projects. Above all, the aim is to use wildflowers to bring biodiversity, delight and colour into the lives of communities, bridging social divides and stereotypes.

A new facility is being established at Eden, including seed cleaning and seed storage facilities. The aim is to build up living seed banks, and work with other advocates to display and incorporate this legacy into the UK’s urban and rural landscapes.

The NWC’s conservation work also connects with rare plant conservation in the South West of England, and 'flowerhouse energies' through projects and seed production North and South.

Plug plants and bespoke wildflower seed mixes

If you need wildflower plugs or bespoke seed mixes for a landscaping or conservation project, please email the contact details below to discuss your requirements. We can use seed that you have harvested from your own land, or source the relevant seed on your behalf. We can also create bespoke seed mixes to suit particular habitats and soils, and are able to offer help and advice whether you are planning your first wildflower habitat or are an experienced conservation practitioner.

Grand displays of wildflowers

Where better to bring the wonder of wildflowers than at the Eden Project itself? Look out for our stunning seasonal displays of native wildflower species around the gardens and our wider estate.

Bring some wildflower magic to your own garden with the National Wildflower Centre seed mix, which you can buy from our shops on site or our webshop.

Here are our top tips for what to do next with them:

  1. Give your seed a chance, sow wisely. Sow on bare ground, don’t throw in thick grass. Reap what you sow, collect your seed later for another go.
  2. Seeds can start conversations: sow together and meet new people. Watch the seedlings grow and celebrate the flowers when they come.
  3. Watch what/who visits the flower, including people! Make a note, learn to identify bees and butterflies and learn more about pollinators and what they do.

The story of the National Wildflower Centre

The National Wildflower Centre opened in the Knowsley borough of Merseyside in 2000 as a Millennium project, funded by the Millennium Commission and Big Lottery. It closed in January 2017 and the Eden Project stepped in to save its legacy and build a new partnership that will continue to flourish from its new South West base.

The establishment of the NWC at Eden Project was supported by the Esmée Fairbairn Charitable Trust.

For more information, email rscott@edenproject.com

Photograph by Mark McNulty


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