Beautiful Bluebell Bonanza!
Parc Mawr is located on the western side of the lower Conwy valley, on the lower slopes of the Carneddau Mountains in Snowdonia, near the medieval town of Conwy.
Every spring this gem of a woodland offers up a breath-taking display of bluebells.
Rob Collister has been volunteer woodland warden for four years now and he has been kind enough to share his recent photos as the bluebells reach their peak.
Not only do we enjoy the violet carpet these flowers create, many insects reap the benefits of bluebells.
Woodland butterflies, bees and hoverflies all feed on their nectar.
Bees can ‘steal’ the nectar from bluebells by biting a hole in the bottom of the flower, reaching the nectar without the need to pollinate the flower.
Luckily visitors to Parc Mawr stick to the paths and avoid trampling the delicate plants as they emerge in spring.
Bluebells can take years to recover from the damage caused by trampling, and if their leaves are crushed they can be weakened (as they can no longer photosynthesise).
While the bluebell is still common throughout Britain, it is under threat locally from habitat destruction, hybridisation with non-native bluebells and the illegal trade of wild-collected bulbs.
The variety of paths and tracks within Parc Mawr enable you to create your own circular routes.
From the main entrance a wide forest track with a stony surface climbs southwards, very steeply at times. This route eventually levels out (after a vertical rise of over 110 metres) where you can get excellent views up the Conwy valley and down to the sea. Luckily, there are benches at strategic points so you can enjoy the views and take a breather before the next stage of your journey.
As well as the gorgeous bluebells there are plenty of other spring flowers in bloom.
The primoses and ramsons are putting on an impressive display.
The Woodland Trust’s Nature’s Calendar project asks members of the public to record the first time their local bluebell flowers open and many other seasonal events.
Written by Martha Boalch, Volunteer Development Officer for Wales.
With a big thank you to Rob Collister for all the beautiful photos.