Here are some of the white flowers that you may see at Plas Farm. White is the most complete and pure colour, the color of perfection. The color meaning of white is innocence, purity, completion and wholeness.
White Foxglove (Digitalis purpurea 'Alba')
White Foxgloves in the wild are almost certainly garden escapes. The origin of the botanical name, Digitalis, is based upon the Latin word digitatus for finger. Perhaps this is because the thimble-like blooms fit a human finger in the way a thimble does. This picture was taken on the earth bank outside Bwthyn Y Saer holiday cottage.
Common Eyebright (Euphrasia officinalis)
The Eyebright is the only British species of a genus containing twenty species distributed over much of the northern hemisphere. The name Euphrasia is of Greek origin, derived from Euphrosyne (gladness). This name was given because of the valuable properties attributed to the plant as an eye medicine preserving eyesight and so bringing gladness into the life of the sufferer. It may be found in many of the fields at Plas Farm. Eyebright will not grow readily in a garden if transplanted, unless 'protected' apparently, by grass. The reason for this is that it is a semi-parasite, relying for part of its nourishment on the roots of other plants. Above ground, it appears to be a perfectly normal plant, with normal flowers and bright green leaves - but below the surface, suckers from its roots prey upon the surrounding grass rootlets. The grass preyed upon does not, however, suffer very much, as the cells penetrate but a slight distance, moreover the Eyebright being an annual, renewing itself from year to year, the suckers on the grass roots to which it is attached also wither in the autumn, so there is no permanent drain of strength from the grass. It flowers from July to September, with deeply-cut leaves and numerous, small, white or purplish flowers variegated with yellow.
Large Bindweed (Calystegia silvatica)
Large bindweed was introduced from southern Europe probably in the middle of the 18th century although not reliably recorded until late in the 19th. It is now widely naturalised in Wales and differs from its close relative, the native Hedge Bindweed by the large green bracts at the base of the flower which overlaps and completely conceals the calyx. It flowers from July to September.
Common Enchanter's Nightshade (Circaea lutetiana)
This is a woodland wildflower that blooms during the summer in shaded areas. Its flowers are usually small, white, and not very showy. Enchanter's Nightshade is a rather odd member of the Evening Primrose family, as its flowers have only 2 petals, 2 sepals, and 2 stamens. A good place to find this flower is at the entrance gate to the oak woodland, a five minute walk from your self catering holiday cottage.
Cow Parsnip (Heracleum sphondylium)
Cow Parsnip, also known as Hogweed, is thought by some to be an aphrodisiac, digestive, mildly expectorant and sedative. Whether or not you are still in the mood after retrieving some leaves from the slurry pit is another question. In addition it can burn the skin so best to stay well clear of this plant. Not enough is known about the conditions required to increase the concentration of the furocoumarins to the point where harm can occur but, it would appear, that strong sunlight is required for the ordinary hogweed to produce burning.
Burnet Saxifrage (Pimpinella saxifraga)
Burnet Saxifrage can be found growing in the rush pasture on the hill behind the holiday cottages. Like many other umbellifers, this species is attractive to the caterpillars of various moths and is also frequented by a number of species of fly. The Burnet Saxifrage is neither a Burnet nor a Saxifrage, but has obtained the latter name because it was thought by some to break up stone in the bladder, and the former from the similarity of its leaves to the Greater and Lesser Burnets.
Common Snowdrop (Galanthus nivalis)
Although native to many parts of Europe, there is some uncertainty as to whether snowdrops are native to Britain or not. Although they grow freely in the wild; all 'wild' snowdrops seem to be garden escapees. One theory is that monks brought snowdrops to Britain from Italy in the fifteenth century, as the flowers are frequently found in the gardens of old monasteries. Whatever their story, there appears to be no record of snowdrops growing wild in Britain before 1770. Snowdrops flower between Januray and March and their emergence is a sign of Winter's end.
Cuckoo Flower (Cardamine pratensis)
Cuckoo Flower may be found during springtime in the cattle meadows in front of the self catering holiday cottages at Plas Farm. The name Cuckoo Flower was first explained in 1597 by John Gerarde: 'These floure for the most part in Aprill and May, when the Cuckow begins to sing her pleasant notes without stammering.' Other names are Lady's Smock, Bread and Milk, Meadow Cress, Spinks, Milkmaids, and Cuckoo Spit. The flowers droop and close up at night or during heavy rain. The meadow froghopper is attracted to the sap of these plants, and its larvae form frothy blobs on the stems which some people refer to as 'cuckoo spit'.
Common Wood Sorrel (Oxalis acetosella)
Common wood sorrel flowers for a few months during the spring, with small white flowers with pink streaks. The binomial name is Oxalis acetosella, because of its sour taste. The stalk is red/brown, and during the night or when it rains both flowers and leaves contract. The common wood sorrel is sometimes referred to as a shamrock (due to its three-leaf clover-like motif) and given as as gift on St. Patrick's Day.
Plas Farm’s White Flowers
1. Burnet Saxifrage Pimpinella saxifraga
2. Common Daisy Bellis perennis
3. Common Enchanter’s Nightshade Circaea lutetiana
4. Common Eyebright Euphrasia officinalis
5. Cuckoo Flower Cardamine pratensis
6. Hogweed Heracleum sphondylium
7. Ivy Hedera helix
8. Garlic Mustard Alliaria petiolata
9. Large Bindweed Calystegia silvatica
10. Ox-eye Daisy Leucanthemum vulgare
11. Snowberry Symphoricarpos albus
12. Snowdrop Galarithus nivalis
13. Stinging Nettle Urtica dioica
14. Yarrow Achillea millefolium
15. Common Wood Sorrel Oxalis acetosella
16. White Foxglove Digitalis purpurea ‘Alba’
If you spot any white wild flowers at Plas Farm during your cottage holiday, please let us know and if possible take a photograph of it. If you are unable to identify the plant, try posting the image on one of the forums on the excellent Wild About Britain.