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Friday, 21 April 2017

In search of bluebells

You don’t have to go far to find bluebells in spring, even in a city like London. Come April and May they cover the ground in shady borders and beneath woodland trees with a carpet of cobalt.
We went bluebell hunting in Stanmore Country Park, at the northern end of the Jubilee line. Until 1950 this was grazed open fields surrounded by hedges, but is now mostly covered with woodland – ideal for these delicate plants. There are two types - the stems of the native English variety (above) curve over, while the Spanish are more upright. The native variety is protected, so should not be picked in the wild.
We followed the park's Eastern and Northern route trails with a slight detour to the highest point.  From there we were rewarded with a magnificent view south of London, with Crystal Palace on the horizon. (A helpful plaque identifies the landmarks.)
There is a downloadable guide to Stanmore Country Park and its nature trails at  
Other places around London to view bluebells include Hampstead Heath, Highgate Wood, Osterley Park, Kew Gardens, Hyde Park, Wanstead Park and Oxleas Wood.

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