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Umbellifers in June

Umbellifers in June

Here are four plants that are in flower now - two garden plants and two wildflowers. They are all members of the Umbellifer family which includes the root vegetables carrot and parsnip, the herbs parsley, fennel, celery and dill,  decorative garden plants  such...

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Dog Rose and Field Rose

Dog Rose and Field Rose

Two similar-looking native wild roses come into flower in June - the Dog Rose Rosa canina and the Field Rose Rosa arvensis. Identification is based on the way the two species differ in the arrangement of the stigmas at the centre of the flower. Neither species was...

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Flowers in June

Flowers in June

In June most trees have finished flowering but wild and garden flowers are abundant. These photos were all taken on June 2nd or 3rd 2020 after a spring period which was the driest and sunniest on record. Common Poppy Papaver rhoeas. A native wild flower found on field...

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Flowers in May

Flowers in May

Here are photographs of nine garden or wild plants that were in flower during May in central England. The weather during this period has been mainly sunny with very little rain. Dates when photographs were taken are in brackets.Chinese Wisteria Wisteria sinensis is a...

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Orchids in May

Orchids in May

Here are 4  wild Orchids to look out for in May. Orchid flowers are complex and have unique flowering parts and an amazing method of pollination. Orchid flowers have 6 tepals in two whorls. The 3 outer tepals enclose the flower. There are 2 inner tepals that enclose...

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Fritillary

Fritillary

Here are 2 Fritillary species that flower in April and May.  One is a wild flower, the other is a garden favourite. The Fritillary genus Fritillaria has over 100 species. It is in the Lily family. Snake’s Head Fritillary Fritillaria meleagris is a wild flower native...

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Trees mid April

Trees mid April

Trees photographed during one week in mid April in an urban setting in Central England. Maximum daytime temperature has been 19c with long sunny periods, no overnight frosts and hardly any rain. Ash is just coming into leaf. Oak leaves appeared around April...

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Bluebells and Wild Garlic

Bluebells and Wild Garlic

Bluebells and Wild Garlic  are in flower now in many woodlands. The two species often grow in the same wood but hardly ever grow together. They form large clumps and out-compete one another. Wild garlic comes into leaf earlier than bluebell and so may have a...

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April trees and flowers

April trees and flowers

The abnormally sunny and warm weather has brought on flowering and leaf formation in many species. Here is a selection of trees and flowers noted in April 2020. In some tree species, such as the Weeping Willow, Dwarf Cherry and Japanese Flowering Cherries, the flowers...

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Dwarf Cherry

Dwarf Cherry

A year in pictures in the life of a Dwarf Cherry tree located on a south-facing patio. Bought in 2018 it did not fruit in the first year, then in 2019 produced its first crop. A dwarf fruit tree is exactly like any other  fruit tree but its genome restricts its growth...

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Hornbeam

Hornbeam

Hornbeam leaves and flowers are coming out now in early April. The Common Hornbeam is native to Southern England and is also found throughout Europe and Turkey. It is a medium-sized tree and can grow to 30m. It is common in hedgerows and woods and has been planted in...

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Tulips

Tulips

Tulips are coming into flower now. Tulips are members of the Lily family. The Tulipa (Tulip) genus with  about 75 species is native to mountainous areas of Eurasia and North Africa. The main area of diversity is Central Asia. Some species and many cultivars are...

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March Flowers

March Flowers

At the moment, in late March, two attractive garden plants are  in flower - the Garden Anemone and the popular Wallflower 'Bowles's Mauve' . Two trees have also recently come into flower - the Wild Cherry and the Norway Maple. Some early flowering cherries may already...

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Pears

Pears

Two species of Pear are coming into flower now,  the Common Pear and the Callery Pear. Both have identical white flowers. They can be confused at a distance with the Crab Apple but they flower 2 to 4 weeks before the Apple. The Common Pear Pyrus communis is native to...

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Violets and Pansies

Violets and Pansies

Violets and Pansies are members of the Viola genus which is in  the Violet family Violaceae. Viola is the ancient Latin name for the  Sweet Violet   Viola odorata used by the Greeks to make perfumes and the Romans to make wine. It has a very distinctive scent which is...

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Primroses

Primroses

The Primula genus of over 500 species includes the Wild Primrose Primula vulgaris and the Cowslip Primula veris. Both species are in flower now, in mid March. A natural hybrid between these two species is the False Oxlip (P. veris x vulgaris). It has been used to...

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Wych Elm flowers and fruit

Wych Elm flowers and fruit

Normally the Wych Elm Ulmus glabra produces flowers in March and  fruit  in April before the leaves. This year the fruit is already on the tree in early March. The fruit is bright green when formed but turns yellow and is shed in May and June. The Wych Elm is native...

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Blackthorn Flowers

Blackthorn Flowers

Three closely related trees have white flowers in spring - Cherry Plum, Blackthorn and Wild Cherry. They are all members of the Prunus genus in the Rose Family and have very similar flowers. The Prunus genus of over 400 species of trees and shrubs includes Wild...

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Early Flowering Magnolia

Early Flowering Magnolia

The Saucer Magnolia (Magnolia x soulangeana) is already in flower in London, following the mild winter. Magnolia trees and shrubs are members of a very large genus containing between 120 and 230 species depending on the classification system used. The genus is named...

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Silver Maple Red Flowers

Silver Maple Red Flowers

The Silver Maple Acer saccharinum is native to eastern and central North America from Newfoundland to Texas. It was introduced to Britain in 1725 and has been widely planted on city streets and parks. Its leaves are silvery underneath and it has bright red flowers in...

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More February Flowers

More February Flowers

Following the mild winter, some  flowers are out in February that normally would not be seen until March. Two wild flowers,  the Lesser celandine and the Coltsfoot are in flower as are two trees, the Cherry Plum with white flowers and the Goat Willow with yellow...

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Flowers eBook Released

Flowers eBook Released

The book will appeal to gardeners, horticulture and biology students and anyone who enjoys looking at  flowers in the garden or countryside. The author is Alan Birkett and this is an eBook available as a download to the Books app of iMacs, Apple Laptops, iPads and...

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February flowers

February flowers

More flowers are out in February than in January. Early flowering Daffodils may already be in bloom. The wild daffodil Narcissus pseudonarcissus  grows in woods and grasslands throughout England and Wales and also in Germany, Portugal and Spain. Plant breeders have...

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January Flowers – Hellebores

January Flowers – Hellebores

Few flowers are out in January but one early flowering plant is the Hellebore. Also out at this time of year are Snowdrops, Winter Aconite, Winter Jasmine, Lungworts and some Heathers. This post describes the main features of the hellebore. Hellebore flowers have 5...

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Summer Fruit

Summer Fruit

Summer fruit that you may be lucky enough to see in the countryside at this time of the year in the UKThe Cherry Plum is also known as the Myrobalan Plum. It is native to a region from the Balkans to central Asia and has been cultivated in Britain from the 16th...

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Tree of Heaven

Tree of Heaven

The Tree of Heaven Ailanthus altissima, native to northern and central China, was introduced to Britain in 1751. It was planted extensively in London Squares and elsewhere in parks, streets and gardens. It is now very common in urban areas and has spread naturally in...

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Three unusual Lime Trees

Three unusual Lime Trees

There are three unusual Lime trees that are found in Britain, Mongolian Lime, Henry's Lime and Oliver's Lime.The Mongolian Lime Tilia mongolica is a small tree native to eastern Russia, Mongolia and northern China. It was introduced to Britain in the 1880s. It has a...

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Mulberries

Mulberries

There are two Mulberry species found in Britain, the Black Mulberry Morus nigra and the White Mulberry Morus alba. The Black Mulberry, native to Southwest Asia, was probably introduced to Britain in about 1500. It has been cultivated for centuries for its edible fruit...

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Lime Tree Flowers

Lime Tree Flowers

There are three species of Lime that flower in June and July. The Broad-leaved Lime is native to Europe and Western Asia. It was probably introduced to Britain but now grows naturally in the lime rich soils such as those of the Wye Valley and parts of the Pennines. It...

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Elder

Elder

                                                                                                                                The Elder Sambucus nigra is a shrub or small tree found in hedgerows and woods throughout Britain. It is also native to Europe, North Africa...

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