Woodland flowers



Bluebells are probably the best known and loved of our woodland flowers. They are widespread and relatively common throughout much of the UK, often forming beautiful swathes of blue in spring.

In most of southern England, bluebells dominate large areas of ancient woodland and in the New Forest they also occur under areas of bracken, where the bracken fronds act like a woodland canopy.

One of the best places to see bluebells in the New Forest is Ivy Wood, just east of Brockenhurst along the B3055 towards Beaulieu. You will need to park in the car park and look a little way into the woods - they cannot be seen much from the roadside. Late April is usually the best time for them.

ID tip - The bluebell can easily be confused with the non-native Spanish bluebell. The bluebell has flowers hanging down and all on one side of the stalk, and the anthers inside the flower tube are creamy-coloured. The Spanish bluebell has flowers all round a rather more upright stem and the anthers are usually blue.

Unfortunately, the Spanish bluebell has escaped from cultivation and hybridises with our native bluebell. In some bluebell woods all the individuals are now hybrids, risking the future of the native species. Thankfully, this does not seem to be happening so much in the New Forest area.

  1. Woodland flowers
  2. Bluebell (you are here)
  3. Lesser celandine
  4. Wood anemone
  5. Narrow-leaved lungwort
  6. Foxglove
  7. Wood spurge
  8. Butchers broom
  9. Wood sorrel
  10. Wild daffodil
  11. Bastard balm


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