The English bluebell appears with the soft-green beech leaves as spring take hold - producing one-sided arching stems of warm-blue bells - quite unlike the wishy washy Spanish imposter.
- Position: partial shade
- Soil: humus-rich, moist, well-drained soil
- Rate of growth: fast-growing
- Flowering period: April and May
- Flower colour: Blue
- Other features: all parts of the plant may irritate skin on contact, and may cause severe discomfort if ingested.
- Hardiness: fully hardy
- Bulb size: 6/7
English bluebells are much loved for their stout spikes of bell-shaped, blue flowers in April and May. They are perfect for naturalising in a partly shaded woodland garden or underneath the canopy of deciduous trees. They quickly spread to form large clumps, so if you want to keep the numbers down in herbaceous or mixed borders, it's best to remove the faded flowerheads to prevent the plant from becoming invasive.
- Garden care: Plant in naturalistic drifts 10cm deep and at 10cm intervals. Where bulbs are planted in grass do not cut the grass until after the leaves have died back.
- Harmful if eaten