A massive thank you to everyone who visited Hodsock Priory’s Bluebell event at the end of April and donated to their chosen charity. You helped to raise £1,945.61 for Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals.
Sir Andrew and the Bluebells team opened Hodsock for Bluebells 2021 but it was just a very simple affair, giving visitors the opportunity to take a walk in the fresh air whilst enjoying the woodland and the gardens. It was free to enter, but charity donations were encouraged, and even attracted national TV coverage, featuring on ITV’s This Morning with Alison Hammond.
Know Your Bluebells!
Here’s your guide to recognising the native British Bluebell, which they have at Hodsock, and the Spanish Bluebell.
- Native British Bluebell – Hyacinthoides non-scripta
- Flowers are a darker blue (sometimes white, never pink).
- Flowers are positioned on one side of the stem giving it its drooping stature.
- Petals curl back at the end.
- Anthers (pollen carriers) are cream.
- Leaves are narrow, 1cm to 1.5cm wide.
- Flowers have a sweet fruity scent.
- Spanish Bluebell – Hyacinthoides hispanica
- Flowers are a paler blue (often pink and white).
- Flowers are positioned all around the stem giving it an upright stature.
- Petals flare out at the end.
- Anthers are usually blue.
- Leaves are bigger and wider, 3cm wide.
- Flowers have no scent, or they have an onion scent.
The native British Bluebell is a protected species in the UK under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. It is a criminal offence to uproot the British Bluebell from land on which it naturally grows. Please leave them for everyone to enjoy.
The Spanish Bluebell is very common in gardens, often mistaken for a native British Bluebell. The Spanish Bluebell has been ‘escaping’ from gardens into the wild for over 100 years and has been cross pollinating with the native British Bluebell which creates hybrids. One in six broadleaved woodlands across the UK have been found to contain Spanish Bluebells or a hybrid. Hybrids are very common in gardens, hedgerows, verges, and woodland near urban areas. If you live near woodland containing the native British Bluebell it is advisable not to plant the Spanish Bluebell in your garden.
If you want British Bluebells for your own garden look for reputable sellers who use cultivated stock. Look for advertisers in the top gardening magazines.