Do bluebells spread?

Asked By: Kimberly Weeverink | Last Updated: 8th January, 2020
Category: home and garden landscaping
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If you want to help your bluebells spread, lift and divide bulbs after flowering. If your bluebells thrive, spreading will also happen naturally via bulb division and seed. Dense clumps of bluebells may eventually out-compete more delicate spring plants or spread to the 'wrong' place in your garden.

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Similarly one may ask, do bluebells multiply?

Although the native English bluebell and the larger Spanish bluebell are often grown in gardens, they can multiply and become a nuisance, requiring control. Spanish bluebells can also hybridise with the native form so are best controlled in gardens close to woodlands where the English bluebell is growing.

One may also ask, do bluebells self seed? If planted in the autumn then plant the Bluebell bulbs about 15 cm apart to a depth of about 5 cm. Bluebells can self-seed profusely. They need the winter period to break dormancy. You can plant Bluebell seeds but you need to accept that it may take many years before you see them in flower.

Also to know is, are bluebells invasive?

Like Japanese knotweed, bluebells are sometimes considered to be an invasive species where I live. There may be nothing inherently bad about a specific invasive plant. When it's outside of its native habitat, however, it may grow or spread rapidly and cause environmental or economic problems.

Do Virginia bluebells spread?

Virginia bluebells are excellent interplanted with other blue-flowering plants such as perennial woodland phlox (Phlox divaricata). Virginia bluebells spread readily by seed, moving outward from an original planting at a speed of a foot or two a year.

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Should you cut back bluebells?

Pruning and caring for bluebells
Once leaves have turned yellow, cut them at their base. Don't cut them any earlier, since the plant needs to drain its leaves from all their nutrients to prepare for the following blooming cycle. Bluebells should normally propagate themselves naturally as years go by.

Is it OK to pick bluebells?

Can you pick them? Since 1998, native bluebells have been protected by Schedule 8 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act (WCA). It is illegal for anyone to collect native bluebells in the wild for the purpose of selling them.

How can I get rid of bluebells in my garden?

Dig the soil around the plants, then feel in the soil until you find all the bulbs. Remove the runners you find below ground as well. These plants are so tough they'll sprout right through a compost heap if you dump them in right away. Kill bluebell bulbs by adding a little bit more effort.

What month do bluebells flower?

Bluebells usually flower from mid-April to late May, depending on the weather. If spring is mild they tend to bloom early. They'll often first appear in the South West where it's a little warmer than the rest of the UK. Bluebells are one of the species we record on our Nature's Calendar website.

How do you look after bluebells?


Give them a light feed with a granular general plant food after flowering. Watering with a liquid plant food after flowering and until the foliage starts to die down will help build up their strength and size for the following year's flowering. Allow the foliage to die down naturally after flowering.

What do you do with bluebell leaves after flowering?

Aftercare. After flowering has finished for the season leave the foliage in place; don't cut it off. The leaves will gather sunlight, create food through photosynthesis and strengthen the bulbs for the future. Please note that bluebells in the green can take several years to establish themselves after transplanting.

What grows well with bluebells?

Daylily. Ferns and primroses make lovely neighbors, but bluebells are often planted in large swaths for a natural look.

What does a bluebell symbolize?

Bluebell. The most popular meaning for bluebells is humility or sometimes gratitude. It is also associated with everlasting love and constancy. Bluebells are also called harebells in Scotland because it is believed that witches turned into hares and hide among the flowers.

Are bluebells poisonous to dogs?

Bluebell. All parts of the bluebell pose a risk to dogs, and can even be deadly in large amounts. The function of the heart can be affected, depending on the amount consumed. Diarrhoea, vomiting and abdominal problems are also possible side effects.

Why do bluebells turn white?


Botanist at the Natural History Museum, Dr Frederick Rumsey, said: "Every species of bluebell will produce white-flowered forms, and these lack the purplish blue pigment which you find in the typical form – the colouration being under genetic control.

Are bluebells toxic?

Are bluebells poisonous? All parts of the bluebell plant contain toxic glycosides that are poisonous to humans and animals including dogs, horses, and cattle. Ingestion of any parts of the plant such as flowers, leaves or bulbs causes a lowering of the pulse rate, nausea, diarrhoea and vomiting.

Do bluebells smell?

Native bluebells have a strong, sweet scent, whereas Spanish bluebells have no scent.

What is the difference between Spanish bluebells and English bluebells?

The main differences between a Spanish bluebell and an English bluebell are: On the Spanish flower, the bells are all around the stem, not just on one side which gives the English bluebell its drooping stature. The leaves are wider and bigger. The petals of each bell open wider and flare at the ends rather than curl.

Why are bluebells protected?

Bluebells are protected by the Wildlife and Countryside Act (1981). It prohibits anyone from digging up bulbs in the countryside and landowners from removing bluebells from their land for sale. The species was also listed on Schedule 8 of the Act in 1998 which makes trade in wild bluebell bulbs or seeds an offence.

Why are my bluebells not flowering?


If you plant bluebells, you should make sure it's the English bluebell, not the Spanish version. This is a more vigorous plant and could out-compete our delicate native flower. If a bluebell's leaves are crushed, they die back from lack of food as the leaves cannot photosynthesise.

Are white bluebells rare?

White Bluebells. They're the same size as normal blue bells, and we read up that there was some found down in england somewhere, and that they're extremely rare.

Can you transplant bluebells?

Transplanting Time
Bluebells will spread over a garden bed and can become overcrowded after a few years. You can then re-plant the bulbs into the same bed, transplant some bluebells to other areas of the garden or give away some to friends and neighbors.