Yellow Rattle (Rhinanthus minor) is an annual wildflower used widely in Britain to reduce the density of grasses in area being converted to flower meadows. The plant is hemiparasitic on grasses, invading grass roots to pull water and nutrients from them and can apparently reduce grass growth by up to 60% in a season. Over 2 or 3 years of seeding, Yellow Rattle can 'open up' dense grass areas to allow other plants to flourish. Yellow Rattle can only establish if bare spots are created for it but persistent use of the plant will eventually lead to more bare spots that can be used by it and other self-sowing flowers. A very short seed viability period and fussiness with germinating on undisturbed soil means that this might not be a particularly invasive plant. It is also, apparently, native to our area. I design perennial meadows on Vancouver Island, working with clients who want low maintenance yards with more biodiversity and color. Many valued flowering meadow plants are aggressive, chosen for ability to compete with grasses. I avoid using plants that could escape over time and become displacers of native plants and, even though Yellow Rattle is considered native, I'm a little concerned about increasing local populations of a plant so effective at reducing grasses. My question for all of you in the Pacific Northwest is whether or not the Yellow Rattle strategy should be considered for use in our area. It is an effective, chemical-free approach to returning high-maintenance and fertilizer-dependent areas to meadows based on a plant already native here. However, hay farmers may not want to see this plant being used more widely as it definitely can reduce their yields. Yellow Rattle represents a potentially much lower cost for transitioning lawns to stable meadows. But I am not familiar with the long-term impacts of encouraging this plant. I'd value input on this. Thanks!