Bluebells photo by Josh Kubale

A woodland carpet of Bluebells is a sight that delights many of us in springtime. Over half of the world’s Bluebells grow in the UK and they are one of our best-loved wildflowers. They are however, extremely precious and as we enjoy the sight of these bell-shaped flowers on our landscape, Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust ask us to respect and protect them for future generations. Whilst Bluebells may be a relatively common sight at this time of year, the species does face threats from climate change, pollution, loss of woodland habitats, and the invasion of the introduced Spanish Bluebell.

Bluebells can begin to bloom in late March, but the real show comes into effect in mid-April. Here, the Trust shares their top five places to see Bluebells on their nature reserves and explains how we can do our bit to preserve them.

Top 5 places to see bluebells in the Herts and Middlsex Trusts Nature Reserves

  1. Astonbury Wood
Astonbury Wood photo by Frieda Rummenhohl

Astonbury Wood is the Trust’s newest nature reserve, a delightful ancient woodland close to Stevenage and a showstopper of a site, when it comes to its sweeping Bluebell carpets. As well as scenes of blue, be on the lookout for the wide variety of wildlife that thrives here – butterflies, mammals, amphibians, woodland birds and fungi abound. Tune in to the wonderful sounds of the woodland too – a wonderful choir of songbirds awaits.

  1. Old Park Wood
Old Park Wood photo by David Brown

Within a stone’s throw of Harefield Hospital, the sight of Old Park Wood carpeted by Bluebells is one that is sure to make you feel better. Indeed, a century ago, it was used by patients from the hospital to exercise as they recovered from Tuberculosis! Thought to be continuously wooded since Saxon times, Oak, Hazel, Silver Birch, Holly, Cherry, Hornbeam, Sweet Chestnut, Alder and Ash tower over the Bluebells with a canopy becoming greener by the day.

  1. Longspring Wood
Longspring Wood photo by Josh Kubale

Nestled behind houses in Kings Langley, this well-hidden spot is an oasis for wildlife and a spot where Bluebells bloom out of sight of the masses. A quiet spot of calm, this is a perfect place to take yourself off to if you want a mindful moment in nature and to listen to the songbirds. Look out for the Blackcap – a distinctive greyish warbler with, you’ve guesses it, a black cap!

  1. Stocking Springs Wood

Situated near Wheathampstead, Stocking Springs Wood is a scene straight out of a fairy tale. As well as being magnificently awash with Bluebells, look out for Wild Daffodils at this time of year too. The gnarly and twisted trees provide clues to the ancient history of this woodland and create dense areas of shade whilst regularly coppiced trees let the light in and encourage the growth of ground flora such as, Wood Anemones, Wood Violets, Yellow Archangel and Bluebells too, of course!

  1. Gobions Wood
Gobions Wood photo by Amy Lewis

Gobions Wood has an interesting history, both natural and man-made. Much of the woodland is ancient and it also includes remnants of landscaped 18th Century ‘pleasure gardens’. Locally renowned for its fantastic display of Bluebells, Wood Anemone and Wood Sorrel also thrive here.  The site is also a dream for those with a passion for fungi – with two new for the UK having been found here and over 100 which are rare or scarce in Hertfordshire.

Steven Werrell, Senior Project Officer with the Trust’s Nature Reserves Team says:

“It’s great so see people enjoying the Bluebells on our nature reserves at this time of year, but we ask them to do so responsibly. In spring and through to the end of summer there’s a lot of activity in nature and many species are breeding, plus ground flora is easily damaged by people and dogs trampling. We can all help to lessen the impact on nature and preserve it for everyone to enjoy by simply sticking to marked paths, keeping dogs on leads and clearing up as we go.”

For more information on the sites above, including useful visiting tips, please visit

Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust is a local conservation charity working to protect wildlife and help people connect with nature. The Trust believes that wildlife should have space to thrive alongside our everyday lives and that everyone benefits from having access to nature. The Trust’s team works with more than 600 volunteers to care for over 40 nature reserves. The Trust also works alongside land managers, local government and community groups amongst others to create more space for wildlife across Hertfordshire and Middlesex. By working alongside our communities, the Trust helps people learn about the wildlife on their doorstep and how they can take practical action to protect it.

Bluebells UK
tommy and lottie logo on woodland print

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