Lesser celandine - brightening spring woodlands and hedgerows
Lesser celandine is a small, low-growing perennial herb in the buttercup family. The cheery yellow flowers can be seen between January and April in damp woodland, shady hedgerows, stream banks and ditches.
As one of the first flowers to appear after winter, Lesser Celandine provide an important nectar source for queen bumblebees and other pollinators emerging from hibernation, and other early insects.
It has shiny, yellow star-like flowers with eight to twelve petals and its leaves are glossy, dark-green and heart-shaped with long stalks.
It was once thought that you could use lesser celandine to predict the weather as they close their petals before raindrops. The leaves are high in vitamin C and have been used to prevent scurvy.
Wordsworth was such a fan of the lesser celandine, he wrote three poems about them: The Small Celandine, To the Same Flower and To the Small Celandine.
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