Prices vary based on meadow size, site condition and product desired.
A meadow installation is priced by the square foot of lawn converted. Your patch can be of any size from a 6 x 6 square to several acre field. The cost of a meadow ranges from $12 per square foot for mini meadows to under $1 per square foot for larger meadows, over 1/4 acre. The square foot price includes the cost of site preparation, plant material, installation labor, watering during establishment, and 1 year of maintenance on your patch. A portion of the cost is due at time of installation and the balance is divided up in 2 parts over the remainder of the year (or following season for fall plantings). Annual maintenance of your meadow, beyond one year, is available at an hourly rate of $25/hour. The plants used in installations will typically be landscape plugs of a dozen or more different species of high quality nectar source, native perennials grown at the Patchwork Meadows Nursery but may sometimes include plants of other sizes purchased from other local nurseries.
Preparation of the lawn section or slope (killing of the grass) will be done by solarization, chemical application, or tilling, (or a combination) depending on site conditions, the time of year, the planting timeline desired and owner preference. If site preparation beyond the killing of grass (such as bush hogging/weedeating/etc) is necessary, there will be an additional cost based on labor required.
The installation price also includes watering plants during times of drought within the first 60 days of planting to insure establishment. The planting areas will be over seeded with annuals, such as clover, partridge pea, black eyed susan, and native grasses. Pine straw will be used to hold soil and protect seeds and plants during germination and establishment.
When a wildflower meadow is properly established & stabilized with native grasses, maintenance needs can be relatively low. A meadow can be cut back (mowed or weed-wacked) once a year during mid summer to control height or at the end of the growing season to prevent woody species from succeeding. The weeding out of aggressive, invasive plants a couple of times each season will also likely be necessary.
In my years working at greenhouses, one of the most frequent and hardest to answer questions was,
"what can I plant on my bank"?
I have learned that unless you want mono culture of juniper or cotoneaster, the answer is a diverse planting of native wildflowers and grasses.
On slopes that are difficult to mow, avoid planting ground covers that have no ecological value. Slopes are one of the best places to plant wildflowers as many natives are drought tolerant and thrive in shallow soils and harsh environments.