Invaders Threaten Our Native Bluebells

If you enjoy strolling through a bluebell wood over the Spring Bank Holiday, you may not be aware that this beautiful sight might soon disappear, Martyn Loach explains why we should all be aware of a foreign invader.

Created by Martyn Loach on Sunday, 3rd of May, 2015.
Updated on Wednesday, 4th of April, 2018.


Bluebells

Bluebells are such an iconic spring plant throughout our woodlands that it would be unthinkable if they were no longer there to enjoy. But the fact is that they are under threat from a horticultural armada.

You may not be aware that there are two types of bluebell, the elegant English version and a hybrid Spanish invader. Once an invited guest into our gardens, the Spanish bluebell has now escaped its domestic confines and is now inter breeding with our native plant.

Difference Between English And Spanish Bluebells

There are various differences between the two types. The English bluebell bends elegantly in the breeze and only flowers on one side. These flowers are much darker than the Spanish bluebell, they are scented and contain pollen that is cream coloured rather than greenish blue.

The problem is that when the varieties cross pollinate, it is the characteristics of the Spanish bluebell that dominate, and slowly but surely the delicate attributes of the native plant that we love so much will be subdued.

There are more bluebells in the dappled shade of British woodland than anywhere else in the world. It would be tragic if this wonderful sight were to disappear but eradicating the non-native bluebell is impractical.

However, you can do your bit by not encouraging their spread. Compost garden waste, don't dump it in the countryside and, the next time you visit a garden centre, buy some English bluebell seed that is readily available rather than the Spanish alternative.

You're spoilt for choice when looking for a bluebell wood to visit, wherever you are in the country they'll be one nearby, but don't forget that it is illegal to dig up the bulbs.

Related Articles

GardenSite Supports Successful Boldmere Community Festival

GardenSite Supports Successful Boldmere Community Festival

GardenSite were once again pleased to support the Boldmere Community Festival which took place on 18 November, with the Christmas Lights switched on by Alan Gardner, well known for his appearances as TV's Autistic Gardener.

Author: David Coton

Written by David Coton.
Published on Friday, 23rd of November, 2018.

What Do I Need For A Great Halloween Garden Party?

What Do I Need For A Great Halloween Garden Party?

You can create the spookiest Halloween Party in town with a spine chilling cast of para-normal misfits including ghosts, ghouls, zombies, vampires and many other sinister characters who inhabit the dark side. David Coton tells you how to transform your home and garden into a thoroughly scary experience.

Author: David Coton

Written by David Coton.
Published on Wednesday, 10th of October, 2018.

Hampton Court Palace Flower Show

Hampton Court Palace Flower Show

Dazzling with colourful interest in the sunshine, the Hampton Court Palace Flower Show is a tremendously popular annual event as it caters for both keen gardeners and also families who want a terrific day out.

Author: Martyn Loach

Written by Martyn Loach.
Published on Friday, 24th of August, 2018.

GardenSite Again Nominated For Glee Award

GardenSite Again Nominated For Glee Award

GardenSite has once again been nominated for the award of 'Best Online Garden Retail Buying Team' at this year's Glee, the UK's most important Garden & Leisure Industry show.

Author: Martyn Loach

Written by Martyn Loach.
Published on Thursday, 9th of August, 2018.

comments powered by Disqus

Author

Martyn Loach

Editor in Chief

View Profile

RSS

View RSS Feed

Follow Us!

Recent Articles

What To Do In The Garden in June

What To Do In The Garden in June

At this time of the year you'll find a fabulous selection of summer bedding at our Garden Centre in Birmingham. David Coton will be planting the bedding in containers this month to achieve a wonderful display of colour and here are some other jobs to do in the garden in June.

Author: David Coton

Written by David Coton.
Published on Sunday, 27th of May, 2018.

Review of the new Elite Edge Greenhouse

Review of the new Elite Edge Greenhouse

Elite Greenhouses have always been at the forefront of new design combined with an unrivalled user-friendly experience and the Edge has got it all.

Author: David Coton

Written by David Coton.
Published on Friday, 5th of April, 2019.

Planned TV Gardening Programmes 2019

Planned TV Gardening Programmes 2019

There's no doubt that television provides gardeners with inspiration, sound advice and good ideas, that's why we're all looking forward to new programmes and the return of old favourites during 2019.

Author: David Coton

Written by David Coton.
Published on Tuesday, 13th of February, 2018.

Review of Biohort Highline

Review of Biohort Highline

Sometimes only the best will do. And if you are looking for the best domestic shed on the UK market it will probably be branded with the Biohort name and logo.

Author: Robert Hall

Written by Robert Hall.
Published on Wednesday, 17th of April, 2019.