GetOutside in spring and spot these wildflowers with this guide
During March and April, depending upon where you live in the UK, you'll spot the first signs of spring.
The magnificent unfolding of spring is nature’s earnest response to warmer temperatures and lengthening days. Among the many signs of this wonderful season of rebirth, is there anything more uplifting for walkers up and down the country than a display of spring wildflowers?
Each of us has our own favourites and country walking offers a good chance of encountering each of these species and only on foot is there time to appreciate their beauty and spectacle.
Primroses favour laneside banks, verges, hedgerows and woodland fringes with dappled sunlight. In Norse mythology the five petals of each flower represent life in the form of birth, initiation, consummation, repose and death.
Cowslips are found on close-cropped, unimproved grasslands, where grazing by sheep and rabbits has predominated and chemical fertilizers have not been used. The cowslip is the foodplant for the caterpillars of the strikingly marked Duke of Burgundy butterfly with its dark chocolate background and tawny/bronze flecks.
The dainty white flower heads of wood anemones carpet deciduous woodland in April, the timing of their brief flowering crucially ahead of the trees coming into leaf and thereby shading the woodland floor.
Swathes of bluebells are synonymous with deciduous woodland. As much as their stunningly eye-catching display of blue, on a still day it is their wonderful perfume that captivates the senses of anyone fortunate enough to be wandering along a path through bluebell woodland.
Wild garlic flowers
You'll likely to smell these before you spot them. Delicious wild garlic usually makes an appearance during April and if you wait a couple of weeks, you'll spot small white flowers emerging. Wild garlic doesn't just look beautiful when in bloom, but you can pick the green leaves (responsibly) and use them in the kitchen. Wild garlic scones, pesto and soup are particularly tasty.
Look out for these on your spring walks, and tell us your personal favourites in the comments below!
10 best spring walks
Gear to get outside this spring
Discover walking routes in OS Maps