Nature Blog Network

bluebells

There are three types of bluebell common in Britain: the native British bluebell, the Spanish bluebell common in gardens and hybrids between the two other species. Native bluebells are common in deciduous woodlands, with apparently half of all the world's bluebells being in the UK. Unfortunately the incidence of Spanish bluebells in woods is increasing to the decrement of the native species, with hybrids adding to the picture. This, together with habitat decline, is leading to a decrease in the native bluebell population.

According to Plantlife, native bluebells have:

- narrower leaves than the Spanish variety
- deep blue, narrow, tube-like flowers with the tips curled back. White or pink variants are rare.
- flowers predominantly on one side of the stem with a drooping appearance
- cream anthers

whereas the Spanish variety have:

- broader leaves, often over 3 cm wide
- paler blue, white or pink flowers
- upright stem with flowers all around
- no or little scent
- blue anthers

Whilst beautiful to look at, the bluebells in Springhill Lane and the Paddock are of the Spanish variety, possibly escapes from our garden although before our time here. The lovely bluebell wood isn't in Deadwenclough (actually on Bury Road)


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