One man’s weed….
Thanks for popping in. Once a year our garden is invaded by bluebells – Spanish bluebells – or so we think. But are these Spanish Bluebells? We just don’t know! Apparently, Spanish bluebells have no scent, but ours smell amazing! It’s a mystery. Maybe one of our readers knows the answer?
There are those who say they are a weed, an invasive weed. Well, all I can say is they are the most beautiful, fragrant weed I know! The garden smells heavenly! Which is strange, because as I mentioned, according to Google, Spanish Bluebells don’t smell. I can see for myself that they certainly spread year on year, and spring up in new places. But hey! If this is a Spanish invasion – I can live with it!
Quote of today? Guess! Yep…
You may have noticed I had a vase of these beauties in the SHAC today. I even made some tall stem vases just for their arrival! There’s a trick to helping them stand tall for a week to 10 days. Cut them low, and set the bottoms of the tall stems in boiling water for about 10 seconds. Then transfer them to cold water. They will stand tall and not bend. Same goes for Gerbera. Mind you, if you stood me in boiling water, then dipped me in cold water, I’d probably go quite rigid too!
Next factoid: they are poisonous to cats. Oh great. Here we see Erik the Viking investigating. He clearly doesn’t respond at all to “No, Erik, not good for you” …
Nice vase though…
So there we have it: poisonous weeds! And there was I thinking we had a beautiful garden this year, and the bluebell lookalikies were particularly lovely! Well we do, actually. Does anybody know whether these are Spanish bluebells? Or Canterbury bells? Would love to know. If it weren’t for their amazing fragrance, I’d say Spanish. They certainly aren’t our traditional English bluebells. We have ancient woodlands near here, and they are very, VERY different. Smell the same though!!
Isn’t nature wonderful, Boo Boo?
Barb x x x
23 thoughts on “One man’s weed….”
I know little about plants and flowers and just admire their beauty. If they smell good too, then that is a bonus. Yours are beautiful and such a glorious colour. I am sure that I have cultivated many weeds over the years. 😂 Great SHAC this morning, thank you. X
Same here Annette! I love a wild garden !!
Beautiful whatever they are and who decides whether it’s a flower or a weed??? Another fact I found was the Spanish bluebell has bluey grey anthers whereas traditional have creamy white…
I don’t know for certain, but I thought it was the height of the flower that made it spanish or not. I didn’t think the smell had anything to do with it! Let’s hope someone correctly knows! Haha. Love the tall vase. I could only watch a small amount of today’s Shac, but it was wonderful. Shall go and rewind it to watch in full!x
Just looked up Spanish bluebells and there are many differences! They are paler in colour, stand tall and don’t droop. Each flower flares rather than curls and are all around the stem, hence why they don’t droop! There were many other differences which I cannot remember!
Still think they look pretty!
Yes, nature is glorious. I have lots of beautiful Bluebells in my garden, just like yours, lovely scent, and I have a vase of them along with some Lily of the Valley, the best of both, two of my favourite flowers . The Canterbury Bells also shoot up here and there all over the place, mine are not flowering yet, they have a bigger flower than the Bluebells. Enjoyed this mornings shac. xx
I so enjoyed just watching Barbara in the shac this morning. Nothing was demanded of me, just as well as I had very little to offer by way of strength as I recover from illness. However, I was inspired to draw a butterfly, so that’s a start! Pathetic really, but hopefully I’ll improve in time. A beautiful day here so I spent some time in the garden with my thoughts and the birds. I say again, be forever thankful. Xx
Hope you will feel a lot better soon Pat and ready for your trip to the Clarity open days.🥰
The RHS advise not growing Spanish Bluebells in rural gardens as they are able to hybridise with native blue bells and could ultimately lead to the disappearance of the native variety. They are difficult to get rid of and although I dig them up every year, some always pop up in the spring.
Did a bit of digging on that brilliant search engine – Here is a brief comparison between the two types of Bluebells:
Native bluebells give off a beautiful sweet aroma. Spanish bluebells have no smell.
Native bluebells have droopy heads. Spanish bluebell heads are much more upright.
Native bluebell heads hang from the same side of the stem. Spanish bluebell heads are more random.
Native bluebells are narrow in shape with rolled back tips. Spanish bluebells are more conical with open tips.
Native bluebells have white pollen. Spanish bluebells have blue pollen.
Native bluebells are protected by law. Spanish bluebells are not protected so you can dig them up!
Having read all this I agree that ours are the Spanish kind as they have blue pollen but this morning I would have definitely said there was an aroma in the garden around the bluebells.
I have pulled some up as we have been giving the garden a makeover & had got to the part of the garden where they were. The bluebells in the woods look beautiful.
Enjoyed the SHAC this morning, just need to finish transferring my picture to the stencil card.
The only thing I would add on the bluebell debate is that many horticulturists believe most urban bluebells are now hybrids of British and Spanish varieties which would explain why Spanish looking bluebells ( flowering randomly around the stem as distinct from British bluebells which droop from stem on one side) seem to have a scent.
Didn’t have time this morning to participate in the Shac, workmen arrived to clean blocked gutters, so going to catch up now!
I was doing some gardening this afternoon, getting the front up to scratch again, got loads of little hellebores seeded themselves, have to pull loads up. I seem to have a pink ‘weed’ as I have no idea what it is but seen it down one of our local lanes. Lot of green leaves and little pink flowers about to come out. I’m trying not to overdo it so doing half an hour at a time and section by section and it’s paying off. I hadn’t heard about putting gerbera’s in hot then cold water – great tip. I have one in flower already in garden, I thought they’d have died over winter but I did half protect them so it’s paid off. I’m really happy to know we now have the summer just to enjoy home and the garden. Thanks for Shac this morning I watched and did the ironing from the holiday and will catch up with drawing. X
Definitely Spanish bluebells. The RHS advises they are not grown in rural gardens because of the ability to hybridise with English bluebells and wipe them out. Still, if you stop them spreading and taking over…
I noticed them in the SHAC this morning and thought they were delphiniums they were so tall! X
Love a bluebell wood – ours are just starting to show up here so I’ll be out walking in the next few days! My dad is 93 and gave up weeding some years back. I bought them some bee bombs and now they have lovely wildflowers in their front garden!
Bluebells are so beautiful. I have been trying for years to get some for my garden but no luck.
Busy today trying to fill the skip before it is collected tomorrow. It is so expensive nowadays so wanted to make the most of it. Very tired tonight but also very satisfied with what we have achieved. Definitely more space in the house.
I am going to have to find time to catch up on the SHAC as I am way behind so will pick up on video. Time goes so fast lately and has a tendency to run away from me, maybe it is because I am just slowing down with age.
The new bijou Groovi on the ODS will be another sell out. They look irresistible.
Bluebells are a very pretty flower. I love colour in the garden. Its autumn in Australia and my double red Dahlias have almost finished flowering. (all of summer) Started with 2 tubers and now have a whole corner full. My kind of garden.
Spanish bluebells have flowers all round the stem and the stamens are blue, English bluebells never hold their head to the sun always droop
Love bluebells and it’s one of the best spectacles, a woodland covered in a blanket of the prettiest blue flowers. Loved the Shac yesterday and perhaps a bluebell or two maybe on your agenda?
Weeds or flowers they are beautiful. We no longer have a garden but when we did I used, unsuccessfully, to wage war on dandelions. A couple of weeks ago we were walking local country lanes with the great grandchildren when greatgrandaughter decided she’d pick flowers and because it was dandelions we let her. How beautiful that big bunch of “weeds” looked!
One man’s weed …
Hi Barb, great quote, have no idea whether they are Spanish or English Bluebells though. We plant a wild flower patch every year, probably 90% are weeds, but it looks pretty, love the vases and thanks for the tip for long stemmed flowers, will give that a go. Take care everyone. Bx
Bluebells look lovely, we have a few which Fred insists are Spanish but I would not know. Another tip for flowers is to put a copper coin in a vase of tulips and they will keep their heads up as well. X
I seem to have more and more Bluebells this year than before. I have been told that mine are Spanish but they have a smell too. I also have a few white ones which are Spanish. Whitebells ?? Whatever they are lovely (except for the leaves when the flowers have finished). Going to watch the SHAC today.
As I live right next to ancient woodland full of bluebells at this time of year, it means our garden is also full of them and they do smell wonderful. Their roots go down to hell so no chance of removing some once they threaten to take over. One thing I’ve noticed is that the ones in the sun are much ‘bluer’ than the ones in the shade. I’ve no idea if this is the case with all bluebells but it seems that sunny patches have darker bluebells and those in the shade are light -and also some white ones! Whatever, they are over so quickly and their leaves take ages to die down!!