This is the first year that I can remember, in such a long time, that English bluebells are still flowering well into the ‘merry month of May.’
Every year, as a child, my father would take me bluebell picking. Most of the bluebells in our area lined country lanes and grew in thick masses on the far side of brooks, streams and deep ditches, all of which supported tall, broad-leafed stinging nettles. For every other bluebell picked came a soft hair brushed against naked skin, a piercing pain and a bump or two as the rash appeared. Then a mixture of pain and itch and the urgent need to pick a dock leaf to rub on the wound and ease the rash.