1) I N TRODUCTION Wild flower meadows never fail to evoke warm feelings, where the gentle grasses and wild flowers invariably look so natural, harking back to a countryside that existed in the days before intensive agriculture. The destruction of hedgerows, extensive use of herbicide sprays and creation of monocultures has had a devastating impact on bird and bee populations, as well as on our native plants. These impacts are now well known, hence many want to experiment with reintroducing wild flower meadows, even on a modest level. But appearances can be deceptive, for there is much preparation to be undertaken to ensure that results are long lasting, pleasing to the eye, and sustainable. After all, at its most simple, you are broadcasting some seed, crossing your fingers and then it’s out of your hands. But such an approach is dicing with chance, for germination is so unpredictable, so how do you best maximise your chances of success? WIL D FLOWER MEADOWS : Appearances can be deceptive Small scale garden meadow Natural waterside scene Ox-eye daises and poppies 1