Birds-foot Trefoil

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Birds-foot Trefoil

Birds-foot trefoil (Lotus corniculatus) is a perennial plant and a member of the pea family, it has yellow pea-like flowers which can be seen from May to September.

The two colours of yellow and red that can be seen in bud give the plant the names eggs and bacon and bird’s claw. The seed pods that are shaped like a bird’s foot can be seen after the flowers.

It can be found in grassy areas, and it is a valuable plant for wildlife, and the food plant for the common blue butterfly, burnet moth as well as a nectar source for bees.

Credit: Information and photo kindly supplied by Peter Dowse of Bollington, Cheshire

Blue Geranium

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Blue Geranium
  • The colours of the geranium can vary from red, pink, magenta, violet, purple, white and salmon.
  • The Geranium grows all over the world.
  • When cultivated from seed they take around 5 months to flower.

The flower of the Geranium can bloom all year long is single or double flowers.

Bluebell

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Bluebell

The Bluebell (Hyacinthoides non-scripta) is a familiar sight in our woodlands and grassy banks during the spring. They grow from bulbs, with the leaves emerging shortly before the violet-blue scented flowers. They are an important plant and an indicator of ancient woodlands.

They are also known as auld mans bells, ring-o-bells and wood bells.

Medicinal uses of the bulb include diuretic and styptic properties, this is because the bulbs contain toxic substances, they were a popular source of glue for bookbinding.

The Spanish Bluebell is a threat to our native bluebell and is frequently planted in gardens and the two species will hybridize with each other.

Credit: Information and photo kindly supplied by Peter Dowse of Bollington, Cheshire

Common Nettle

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Common Nettle

Stinging nettles (Urtica Dioica) are easily recognised and can also be unpopular as a weed; unfortunately it is often easily felt as the whole plant is covered in stinging hairs.

Stinging nettles produce formic acid which they hold in brittle hollow hairs. When you crush a plant, you break the hairs, causing the acid to burn your skin.

Nettles can be made into drinks such as beer, wine, champagne and tea. They are high in iron, vitamin C, a source of Calcium and Magnesium. Nettle soup is also popular. They are also an important wildlife plant for insects, birds, and butterflies, such as the small tortoiseshell and peacock that will use it as their food plant.

Credit: Information and photo kindly supplied by Peter Dowse of Bollington, Cheshire

Dandelion

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Dandelion

The yellow flower of the dandelion (Taraxacum officinaleis) commonly referred to as a weed of roadsides, gardens and waste ground. The flower heads are a fantastic nectar source and food plant for bees, hoverflies and butterflies.

Linnets, a bird of farmland is known to feed the developed seeds to its young chicks. The seed heads are white and can be seen dispersing in the wind.

The leaves when young can be used in salads and the flowers to make dandelion wine.

Credit: Information and photo kindly supplied by Peter Dowse of Bollington, Cheshire

Ivy

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Ivy

Native ivy (Hedera Helix) is a vigorous evergreen climbing plant which can be found growing up and over walls, trees and hedges. It is one of the best wildlife plants, supporting excellent cover, nesting sites, nectar rich flowers and berries. It is the food plant for many species of moth and the holly blue butterfly.

Ivy is wrongly thought to damage trees and it is not a parasite, it takes nothing from the tree and only uses it for support. It does not strangle the tree or cause deformities. Occasionally, when it gets in to the canopy it can reduce the amount of light reaching the leaves of an old tree and can make the tree more liable to blow over in the wind

In former days old English taverns bore a sign of an ivy bush over their doors, this to indicate the excellence of the liquor supplied, hence the old saying “A good wine needs no bush”.

Credit: Information and photo kindly supplied by Peter Dowse of Bollington, Cheshire

Lesser Celandine

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Lesser Celandine

Lesser Celandine is a native, tuberous, perennial herb growing up to 25cm.

Flowers are solitary (between 1 to 3cm across) with green, ovate sepals and 7 to 12 bright yellow petals. Petals have a dark patch at the base.

Leaves are green, glossy and heart shaped.

They grow in damp woods, hedge banks, banks of streams, marshes and waste ground, where they can form extensive carpets.

Photo Credit: © Keith Jones

www.flowers.goodpages.co.uk

Purple Moor Grass

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Purple Moor Grass
  • It is native to Europe, west Asia and North Africa.
  • It is found in moist heath land and bogs throughout Britain.
  • Purple Moor Grass is a United Kingdom Biodiversity Action Plan Habitat due to its rarity.
  • It can grow up 90 cm tall.

It flowers between July and September, later than other species.

Sweet Violet

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Sweet Violet
  • Flowers late February to May.
  • Sweet Violet grows in hedge banks, woodland, churchyards, waste and brownfield sites and beside roads and footpaths.
  • It is a native, perennial, low-growing, rhizomatous, patch-forming, fragrant herb that grows in patches of plants linked by rooting stolons.

The flowers are small (12-18mm across) and violet. The spur is usually lilac or purple.

Credit: Thank you to Keith Jones for sharing these informative facts. Photo Credit: © Keith Jones

www.flowers.goodpages.co.uk