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Wildflower Collective

Seeding Sustainability: The Entrepreneurial Journey of Wildflower Collective

1 February 2024

2 minutes to read

Seeding Sustainability: The Entrepreneurial Journey of Wildflower Collective

Dr Grace Twiston-Davies, a former Post-Doc Research Fellow, is now the Co-Director and Co-Founder of Wildflower Collective. This non-profit organisation is dedicated to tackling the climate and environmental crisis through the strategic use of wildflowers.

We follow Grace’s entrepreneurial journey as she explores alternative funding avenues and builds new partnerships.

The Roots of Wildflower Collective

Having spent eight years at the university, collaborating with farmers and stakeholders to integrate wildflowers into landscapes, Grace witnessed the myriad benefits of this initiative. The impact was substantial, from supporting nature and capturing carbon to enhancing community well-being and providing business opportunities for farmers. Eager to extend this positive influence beyond project-based funding, Grace initiated the Wildflower Collective to ensure the continuation of this vital work.

The Entrepreneurial Researcher Programme 

To secure the future of Wildflower Collective, Grace explored alternative funding sources. This exploration led her to the Entrepreneurial Researcher Programme (ERP) in March 2022. Here, she re-evaluated the initial business model, which heavily relied on consultancy. The ERP played a crucial role in expanding her perspective on sustainable income streams and value propositions, emphasising the need to approach the collective with a business mindset focused on generating income to support charitable activities.

During the ERP, sponsorship emerged as a potential avenue for funding. At first, this was met with concerns due to the post-pandemic cost of living crisis. However, positive feedback and the compelling story of Wildflower Collective as a “matchmaking” agency, connecting ‘donor’ sites of existing wildflower meadow seed to ‘receptor’ sites to create new meadows, have convinced Grace to explore this avenue further.

Exploring sustainable funding and alliances 

Corporate sponsorship and Biodiversity Net Gain have also presented themselves as options. However, given the complexity of mitigating the adverse effects of businesses, Grace plans to approach this with caution. Nonetheless, she sees it as a possibility to promote her sustainability mission.

Partnerships with Cornwall Protected Landscape (formerly Cornwall Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty), Cornwall Council and Rosuick Organic Farm have been crucial in obtaining project grants, such as Defra’s Farming in Protected Landscapes fund. This grant has offered concrete assistance for community involvement, habitat restoration, and farming diversification. As a result, over 700kg of seeds have been harvested, and 30 hectares of species-rich grassland have been planted in just 1 year.

The Road Ahead

Grace has a vision to develop a diversified and resilient revenue stream for Wildflower Collective. Her experience highlights the significance of aligning with the mission while creating a non-profit organisation. Grace advises budding entrepreneurs to use a guiding sentence or picture that reminds them of their mission. This approach helps ensure that every idea explored contributes meaningfully to the organisation’s core objectives.

For more information please contact:

For more information on Wildflower Collective please email:

Grace Twiston-Davies remains as an affiliate of the Environment and Sustainability Institute.


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