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English Wild Flowers: A Month by Month Guide

Red Valerian by a footpath in Somerset
 
 
 

Introduction

Walking, whether in the countryside or neighbourhood, is a main leisure activity.

Like me, you may be frustrated at seeing wild flowers that you think you should be

able to name.

This web site is my attempt to remedy this situation. I hope that it increases your

enjoyment of not just the countryside but also of paths, wasteland, walls and

hedgerows in urban areas.

Organisation

It is organised on a monthly basis. This gives you an idea of what to look out

for at different times of the year.

Months  are accessed, either by clicking on a name from the list below, or by

putting the cursor on the month at the top of the page.

Plants are listed in alphabetical order in the month in which they first appear.

This is not necessarily the peak in their flowering season.

January is an exception because it includes plants which flower all year round.

It is a work in progress - there are many plants still to be added, particularly

for the summer months.  

What are classed as wild flowers?

The different types of wild flower: native, naturalised, alien, etc. are shown 

on this link - Which plants are classed as wild flowers?. 

In deciding whether a flower is wild or not, I follow the guidelines of the

Botanical Society of Britain and Ireland (BSBI) and the National Biodiverity

Network.

Flowering season

The scientific study of the timing of the biological events in plants such as

flowering, is known as phenology.

The time when a plant flowers is controlled by its genetics, day length and

climate.

Of these factors, climate is the main factor that varies from year to year

and is therefore mainly responsible for differences in the timing of flowering.

In mild winters, for example, spring flowers appear earlier and  the previous

summer's flowers last longer, especially close to habitation. The effects

are less marked in the open countryside

Long-term, persistent changes in the timing of flowering can be used as a

measure of climate change. You can keep your own records for this purpose.    

Photography

Several photographs are shown for each flower. They are chosen to illustrate

diagnostic characteristics mentioned in field guides and floras.    

My current camera is an Olympus Stylus SH-1.

Pictures  have been cropped, but not otherwise manipulated, using Adobe

Photoshop.

Sources

The sources I use for identification: field guides, websites, county floras and 

books are listed on the sources page.

Web Statistics

The number of people accessing this site are shown on the Web Statistics

page. Last year - 2017, the site was accessed 2,702,007 times.

About me

I retired  in 2006 after 40 years as a microbiologist at Lancaster University and

returned to my first scientific interest, plants, showing that it is never too late

to use your first degree (botany).

I took all the pictures (except for those in which I appear) and did all the

identifications and  descriptions of the plants.

Several people have contacted me to correct identifications!

Dedication

Violetta, my wife, encouraged the setting up of the site and quickly realised

the potential of digital cameras. She was also insistant that I needed a hobby.

Sadly, Violetta died in 2012.

This website is my celebration of her life.

Feedback

I welcome feedback, corrections and suggestions.  

Email me on  -  keithjones415@outlook.com  

   

January
February
March
April
May
June
July
August
October to December




Next page: Sources