In collaboration with Tillers Turf……..
Heather is also known as ‘Ling’ and is found predominantly on heathland, moorland, bogs and even in woodland with acidic or peat soils. The heather contained in our heather turf is predominantly the delicate pink, July to October flowering Calluna vulgaris (common heather), although it may also contain some Erica cinerea (bell heather) and Erica tetralix (cross leaf heather). Low numbers of other heathland species may also be present such as Ulex minor (dwarf gorse) and species of fescue, all helping to make up a diverse heathland carpet. The Heather plants grow tightly packed together and can live for up to 40 years or more.
Beautiful purple-carpeted heaths are an iconic feature of the UK’s landscape and are the result of hundreds of years of low-impact human activities such as livestock-grazing and scrub clearance. However, large scale development and the decline of traditional farming methods have caused many of these precious habitats to be lost – in fact, over 80% of lowland heathland in the UK has been lost in just 200 years. Heathlands also form a very important habitat for many species of wildlife including Adders, Common Lizard, Woodlark and the ground nesting Nightjar.
The heather turf you receive also benefits from having a seed bank contained within the heathland soil profile the heather grows on. The seed can lay dormant for many years and germinate when environmental conditions are suitable.
Our Heather Turf is harvested from a sustainable source and the process integrated into an overall management plan to regenerate the existing heathland to ensure its future survival and growth.
Creating an environment suitable for your heather to be laid on is essential. The area should be free draining in nature, ideally very slightly raised above surrounding grass areas to create definition and encourage a free draining environment, look for signs of where heather may have previously abundant as these tend to be suitable. A pH of 5-5.5 is ideal for heather growth; the availability of iron in the soil is an important nutrient for heathers.
Like any plant heather will need water in the first couple of seasons to allow establishment of roots but once established the plant will survive in a very dry environment.