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Are bluebells, cowslips or buttercups still relevant to our children?

With bluebell, cowslip and buttercup having all been removed from the latest edition of the Junior Oxford Dictionary, now is the perfect time to give children the chance to enjoy and learn about our wild flowers.

May 01 2015

Bluebells © Bob Gibbons

Bluebells © Bob Gibbons

This May Bank Holiday, Plantlife is launching its inaugural Wildflower Weekend, as now is a peak time in the floral calendar, with woodland flowers in their full glory and meadow plants just beginning to put on their magnificent displays.  

Children today are in danger of losing touch with even common flowers - one recent survey showed that only 1-in-10 children could name a primrose, and only half could identify a bluebell. But, given a chance, children still love discovering the natural world and enjoying centuries-old traditions such as making daisy chains or holding buttercups under their chins. 

  • Download the Plantlife Wildflower Weekend activity pack and go in search of some of the top 25 using our ID sheets
  • Sketch or photograph the flowers you find and share your pictures with us on social media 
  • Be in touch with nature – make a daisy chain, press a flower, or take a leaf rubbing

If you’re inspired by what you find, why not vote for your favourite in The Nations’ Favourite Wild Flower Vote?  

Since voting began in March, Britain’s favourite blooms have been swapping places on Plantlife’s live leader board. Bluebell is currently top, with primrose hard on its heels, and it’s a fine line between cowslip and poppy; this is a close competition. The top ten flowers have nearly 75% of the vote and snowdrop and cowslip are separated by only 0.1% of votes cast. But it’s not too late to have your say; vote now until 11 June 2015 at http://plantlife.love-wildflowers.org.uk/wildflowervote. ;

Dr Trevor Dines, Plantlife’s Botanical Specialist, says, “When I was little I vividly remember the bluebell woods behind by my grandma’s house in Wiltshire. She’d get us hunting for white bluebells – the one or two special ones in the sea of blue - and little games like this helped sparked my lifelong passion for wild plants.”