A discussion of wildscape can be found in different components of the
total assessment. Here we are focusing on the wildscape as an abode for
wildlife (at least the birds and butterflies).
When well designed, wildscape can be quite beautiful and can improve the
quality of life of the landscape; it provides a link to the rural
landscape, a balance of the cultivated and the wild. Like work and rest,
cultivation and the wild need to coexist and are interdependent.
Increased wildscape will be needed for many insects and even birds which
are so hard pressed by the decrease in wilderness areas. If the labor-
and resource-saving reasons are not sufficient, the provision of
sanctuary for birds could be a major reason for considering more
wildscape. A wildscape property will be blessed with many birds, many
species of which are under heavy stress today due to destruction of
winter and summer nesting and feeding areas.
Planting. Determine the area that should be in wildscape. It may be one
where the color of the wildflowers will stand in contrast to other
colors of the landscape. Prepare the ground for the wildscape according
to local specifications. Usually it needed to be plowed and tilled with
a disc harrow. Sow the seed as recommended, usually in the late summer
or fall. Obtain commercially available wildflower or prairie grass seed,
or possibly with seed collected from other wildscapes. Native seeds are
always more ideal than imported varieties. In each subsequent year one
can gather the seed produced on this particular wildscape and use it to
expand the wildscape, thus keeping long-term costs low.
Bordering. One practical suggestion for increasing the popularity of wildscape is to border the first wildscapes established with brick or
stone and allow those to be small enclosed flower gardens. Spectators
will love it. Of course, it will take years for such a landscape to
mature and will reach maximum productivity only gradually over that
time. This is an investment in the future though well worth the effort.
Varieties. Variety selection depends on the region of the country, the
type of soil, the amount of shade, and the initial decision to have only
native plants or to include non-invasive non-natives in your wildscape.
Choose varieties wisely. It may be best to experiment with some types to
find out which do best in your area.