Lower Pertwood Farm in Wiltshire on the A350 between Shaftesbury and Warminster is well known for its flowers. Every year the farm plants flowers along the A350 and on other parts of the farm in order to better understand which varieties do best and what might enhance the natural habitat of Lower Pertwood Farm.

Apart from traditional British wildflowers, we add plants that are valuable for other reasons. In the case of plants like Sainfoin, which is a legume, it is deep rooted and fixes nitrogen in the soil. Phacelia with its lovely blue flowers is an excellent forage crop and can be grazed. We are now enjoying the first flowering of a mix of plants that will change colour over the next few weeks. The blue flower, Phacelia, grows very rapidly and is normally the first to flower. However, nature has its own secret strategies and this year poppies appeared almost immediately after the Phacelia. It has been a very good year for poppies, but we were surprised to see them flower so late.

There are at least a dozen other plants in the emerging phase so if you keep an eye on this strip you will see its change in character between now and October when the last of the flowers should slowly disappear.