Hyacinthoides non-scripta   Bluebell C DD N

Hyacinthoides non-scripta Hyacinthoides non-scripta group

You might find some plants which look like bluebells near your home but you need to look at them carefully. There are quite a lot of hybrid bluebells which are crosses between the Spanish bluebell (Hyacinthoides hispanica) and the one shown here: the native woodland bluebell (Hyacinthoides non scripta). The hybrid is called Hyacinthoides x massartiana (the old name Hyacinthoides x variabilis was declared illegal by the naming taxonomists). The hybrids tend to have wider bells which can be blue or white and more rarely pink. If the bells are blue then the anthers tend to be blue too.

The pure species Hyacinthoides hispanica (Spanish Bluebell) doesn't occur very often in the wild in spite of what some people (on TV particularly) say.

The bells of the bluebell (wild hyacinth) are darker blue in the genuine bluebell and they droop on one side of the flower stem with longer, narrower bells. The anthers are cream coloured. The leaves are also narrower in H. non scripta. The bluebell wood with thousands of bluebells en masse is a specialty of Britain and plant lovers come from all over the world to see it. Bluebells are found elsewhere in the world but 30% of the world's population of bluebells is British.  When Plantlife asked people for their choice of County flower they had to rule out the bluebell because so many would have chosen it.

Apart from a few of the remotest places in the highest mountains the bluebell is found all over the British Isles.

There is one aspect of this plant which can't be demonstrated on a web site. Go to a wood with bluebells in full flower on a sunny morning after rain and take a deep breath - you'll never forget that fragrance.

The name: Hyacinthoides non scripta puzzles people though. "non scripta" or "not written" how does that relate to a bluebell?

Read about it here

Hyacinthoides non-scripta

Hyacinthoides non-scripta Bluebell

Cheshire, 24th May 2006

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Hyacinthoides non-scripta

Sandstone Trail, Cheshire, 24th May 2006 (LHS) Coed Cilygroeslwyd, North Wales 16th April 2002

Amended on Jan 27th 2005, amended Mar 13th 07, updated 11th Apr 09, updated 7th Apr 10 & 2nd May 10, upadted 07 Jul 14

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