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Sat, Sep 14


Forest of Flowers

Creating Wildflower Habitat - Day Course

A hands-on workshop to learn the techniques used for creating wildflower areas, on a small or large scale. Includes the chance to sow a new wildflower area at the Forest of Flowers site.

Creating Wildflower Habitat - Day Course
Creating Wildflower Habitat - Day Course

Time & Location

Sep 14, 2024, 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM

Forest of Flowers, Home Farm, Tollerton Road, York YO61 1JB, UK

About the event

Growing wildflowers is one of the best things you can do for our native British wildlife. Many pollinators, beetles and a wide array of insects depend on specific wildflower species as nectar sources and larval foodplants. In turn, the success of inverterbrates affects mammals, birds and the ecosystem as a whole. With wildflower meadows in the UK down by 97% since the 1930s, the creation of new habitat is vital. 

In this workshop, we will share the techniques necessary to create a new wildflower area, alongside key factors to consider and recommendations for maximum success. 

We will discuss:

  • Area assessment, including existing plantlife, soil type, shade and damp levels.
  • Choosing suitable wildflower species to sow
  • Sourcing wildflower seed and seed provenance
  • Ground preparation
  • Sowing
  • After-care and Management 

After our discussion, you'll get a chance to put the thoery into practice by sowing a wildflower area at the Forest of Flowers. 

Food and refreshments will be included throughout the day, including a vegan lunch as well as tea, coffee and homemade cakes. 

All ticket sales will support our conservation work here on the Forest of Flowers nature reserve. Thank you!

Tickets are limited and booking is essential.

About Alwyn Craven

This session will be led by Alwyn Craven, Founder and Site Manager at the Forest of Flowers. 

Alwyn studied Biology at Oxford University and later achieved a Diploma in Horticulture with Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. He then went on to work with the WWT London Wetland Centre before leading the Forest of Flowers project near York. There, Alwyn used his expertise in ecology, and plant and wildlife species to create of 74 acres of wildflower meadows and woodland, and 17 large ponds, to offer the best possible habitat to wildlife.

About Forest of Flowers

At the Forest of Flowers we have sown 74 acres of wildflower meadows, transforming arable fields with minimal biodiversity into a site with at least 146 species of flowering plant, and the number 1 site for butterflies in Yorkshire.* 

The land, previously a mixed arable and sheep farm, was re-purposed in 2016 when over 42,000 trees and shrubs were planted, alongside native wildflower species. This is part of a vision to create a thriving ecosystem to benefit pollinators, birds and a diverse range of native wildlife.

The project also supports:

  • Carbon capture to reduce the effects of climate change.
  • Prevention of flooding in the local area.
  • UK wildflower population, providing seeds from the meadows to other sites nationwide.

Visitor Reviews from Previous Events

"Thank you for a most enjoyable, relaxing, varied and informative event. It was a very special, unique and memorable afternoon. The structure was excellent as it was so varied and the activities linked together so well. We were made to feel welcome from the moment we arrived and the setting under the gazebo in the orchard was absolutely perfect... and your friendly cat was an added bonus!" - August 2022

"From our perspective it was just the right balance, giving people a chance to learn, share their stories, mix with others, ask questions. As always, your knowledge and enthusiasm shone through and I’m sure everyone found the afternoon useful and interesting." - August 2022

*Of all sites surveyed under Butterfly Conservation Yorkshire's Monitoring Scheme, Forest of Flowers recorded the highest total number of individual butterflies from 2020 - 2023. 


  • Adult

  • Age 7-17

  • Under 7




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