Blooming May

May, the month that always seems to see the greatest profusion of plant growth in the UK with seemingly new and different flowers sprouting nearly every day. Its difficult to keep up sometimes to be honest but I never tire of spotting the familiar blooms as they appear around my local meadows and hedgerows. 

Here's what caught my eye through the month, nothing particularly unusual, the traditional colours of Spring with one or two quirks in the mix. These first few were all on roadside verges, fast becoming safe havens for our native wild flowers and insects.

Buttercups, Castle Howard, 09/05/2022


Dog Rose, Copmanthorpe nr York, 14/05/2022


Birds-Foot Trefoil, Copmanthorpe nr York, 14/05/2022


Red Clover, Castle Howard, 14/05/2022


Camas (non native but looks the piece!), Heslington nr York, 13/05/2022


Red Poppy, Thornton nr Pocklington, 20/05/2022


Hawkweed sp. poss Rough Hawkbit, Copmanthorpe nr York, 14/05/2022


Red & White (Bladder) Campions, Copmanthorpe nr York, 14/05/2022


I was too early for the orchids at Wharram Quarry and there was nothing else unusual there with Crosswort being the dominant plant, but of interest to me was the profusion of the delicate and tiny Milkwort. Easy to miss, it just looks like indistinct blueish purple patches on the ground, but up close it's as pretty as anything.

Milkwort, Wharram Quarry, 27/05/2022
Crosswort, Wharram Quarry, 27/05/2022


Here's my Askham Bog selection, I'm there nearly every weekend recruiting for YWT so handily placed to see the first Yellow Flag Irises, Ragged Robin and Water Violets.

First Yellow Flag Iris, Askham Bog, 14/05/2022


First Ragged Robin, Askham Bog, 14/05/2022


Marsh Valerian, Askham Bog, 14/05/2022



Royal Fern, Askham Bog, 28/05/2022


Water Violet, Askham Bog, 15/05/2022


On my own local patch at Fangfoss Park I noticed the first spikey purple blooms of Comfry, great to photograph and attracting the interest of a single Brimstone butterfly, and earlier in the month an unusual flower for here or maybe just overlooked in the past, a small clump of Wood Avens by the side of the disused railway.

Brimstone on Comfry, Fangfoss Park, 24/05/2022


Wood Avens, Fangfoss Park, 16/05/2022


Water or 'Nodding' Avens are the ones I'm much more familiar with and there were loads of these unobtrusive and I think quite strange looking flowers alongside the damp margins of Howsham Wood mid month, along with Wild Garlic, Pignut and a single orchid species I couldn't decide whether it was Common Spotted or Pyramidal. 

Water Avens, Howsham Wood, 23/05/2022


Orchid sp. ?Common Spotted, Howsham Wood, 23/05/2022


Wild Garlic, Howsham Wood, 23/05/2022


Pignut, Howsham Wood, 23/05/2022


Lastly a couple of 'wallpaper' / screensaver candidates. A lovely carpet of Germander Speedwell at North Cave Wetlands and straying into June masses of aromatic Chamomile growing in crop fields adjacent to the Pocklington Canal a few days ago.

Germander Speedwell, North Cave Wetlands, 12/05/2022


Chamomile, Pocklington Canal, 06/06/2022


It's true I hardly saw a single orchid all month but you don't need the exotic to brighten up a Spring walk - all of the above are common wild flowers, within reach of most - probably not enough of them but they're still there thank God!  Did you take part in 'No Mow May' this year? All wild flowers need pollinators and all pollinators need flowers, both are in steep decline but anybody with a garden can help. Find out more here - No Mow May


Further Info & related pages from this website

Wharram Quarry - site visit

Plantlife - external link

Plantlife - my pages

Take part in No Mow May - news article





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