5 Wildflowers to Look Out for on Your Lecrín Valley Wanderings
Discovering Wildflowers in the Lecrín Valley
Nature lovers feel completely at home in the Lecrín Valley, so if you love wildflowers, or are just an enthusiast of the great outdoors, this is for you. Whichever route you take from Casa Tagomago it will almost certainly lead you on a journey of discovery, discovery of the delights nature has to offer. So grab a jacket, your hat, some water and your camera and we’re off! Which are your favourite wildflowers? How many can you spy? We’ve been there before so how about a peek into what you might expect to see?
First of all, the Caper Bush or Flinders Rose, a perennial plant with round, fleshy leaves and pinky, white flowers. As you know the fruit is the caper, wonderful for seasoning salads and sauces. We took this photo on a walk from Murchas to Lojuela Castle
Next up, the lovely Digitalis obscura, commonly known as the Sunset Foxglove or Willow-Leaved Foxglove, such an unusual, copper colour giving it the shade of a sunset. Native to Spain and Africa it can also be cultivated in other parts of the world. Like the other members of the foxglove family it is highly toxic and is used for making the drug digitalis. This one was taken on one of our favourite walks near the Venta de la Cebada
Third on my list of wildflowers is the elegant Crupina crupinastrum, maligned on Wikipedia as being an invasive weed! The only common names I could find are False Saw-wort or Southern Crupina, which I don’t think suit this charming flower at all, so I shall call it Escobas as it’s known in Spanish. Not ideal either as it means brooms in English! Can anyone do better? Native to the Mediterranean shores, Crupina is found near the coast and even as high as 2.000 metres above sea level. In the Lecrín Valley, you are sure to see it along the waysides and in ditches.
For number four, I have chosen the glorious, golden Genista umbellata, endemic to southern Spain. Reaching no more than 70 cms, this plant forms wonderful hummocks and grows on rocky ground near the coast, it’s not at all bothered about the soil it grows in either. Once more, this Genista has no common name in English, that I could find, but here in south eastern Spain, it is called bolina. I am quite happy with that and you? Because of it’s habitat, you will be able to find it fairly easily. This one was taken near the Venta de la Cebada too.
Last but by no means least, is the striking Phlomis purpurea or Purple Jerusalem Sage but the Spanish name is far more exciting, if rather blood thirsty – Matagallo (Rooster killer). Apparently it is also considered ideal for deer infested areas of the US, so maybe in Andalucía it faces up well to roosters too! Once more, native to Spain this plant is widely seen in the Lecrín Valley and surroundings. Thriving on the rocky, well drained soil here, the flowers are a beautiful pink and the leaves a furry, silver green. You just can’t miss it.
So there you are, five wildflowers, small wonders of Mother Nature for you to look out for and I’m sure you will discover many more in your ramblings.
For more details on wild flowers to be found in Andalucía do visit this marvellous page Waste Magazine
Post and photos by Susan at casatagomago.com