The daffodils that started flowering first, start to wither now; but many other ‘Easter flowers’ are still flowering. The leaves of the low sycamore maple begin to unfurl. Just like the common brimstone, the peacock butterfly comes and indulges in the willow catkins. Wood anemones cover great parts of the forest with their white flower carpet. They will be the most conspicuous spring flowers for the next ten days when the sun is shining. Along the paths, the yellow stars of lesser celandine absorb the sun. The bluebells need some warmer days to start flowering. The forest will not turn purple-blue until the second half of the Easter holidays.
The wild daffodils are now fully in bloom. Along the edges of the paths, we see he yellow stars of lesser celandine. When the sun appears, some tiny white carpets of wood anemones can be seen. But a lot of plants still have to start their bloom. The leaves of the wild bluebells turn the forest floor green; a few flower buds are appearing on some places. Nothing is growing, though, where last year’s photograpers who did not keep to the paths, stood between and on the flowers. Those are now flowerless spots only covered in dead beech leaves. It will be one more week before the wood anemones are in full bloom. You need some more patience for the bluebells, they will probably reach their peak in the second half of April.
There are more flowering wild daffodils by the day. They will be the most conspicuous spring flowers for the next week. Small wood anemones start appearing, but they are far from forming a white flower carpet. Still deep between the leaves, a few flower buds of bluebells are hidden, but a ‘blue forest’ is not yet imminent. Roe deer enjoy the quiet in the wood. It is important to stay on the paths not to disturb them, you can enjoy the plants and the animals while always staying on the paths. Please respect their home when visiting the forest. In April and in early May there will be a special accessibility arrangement over the weekend, which can be found here.
A sunny sky, no freezing temperatures, perfect weather for spring flowers. The wild daffodils hold their heads up again and enjoy the sun. The first flowering wood anemones turn to the sun, gathering as much sunlight as they can like real sunbathers. On sunny slopes, the first yellow stars of lesser celandine appear. Tomorrow afternoon, in the bosmuseum, the practical approach to the coming bluebell’s time will be presented to the press, as well as the new walking map.
Some powder snow, -2°C, the coldest 17 March in 100 years… a wintery cold spell, only a few days before the beginning of spring. The wild daffodils bow to the cold, some seem to be withering already. Fortunately not all daffodils are in bloom, let us hope that some other ‘Easter flowers’ (as they are called in Dutch) will be there to enjoy by the end of the month. Even the first flowering wood anemones suffer from the cold.
Blooming of the wild daffodils has now slowly started. It will reach its peak by the end of the month. In the parts of the wood with deciduous trees, “schoontijd” (= a recovery period) started on 1 March, the exploitation of timber has been brought to a standstill until 30 June. The timber that is ready, lying next to the paths, however, can still be transported. Tiny wood anemone plants appear, and wild bluebell’s leaves pierce through the brown carpet of beech leaves. Lesser periwinkle is blooming. It is so important for wanderers and photographers to stay on the official paths at all times. This is the case throughout the year in Hallerbos, so as not the make the soil dense and hard.
In the forest edges cornelian cherry is blooming, as well as coltsfoot with its yellow ray flowers. In these two plants, flowers appear before the leaves. In former times coltsfoot was used in folk medicine to get rid of a cough. Its scientific name ‘Tussilago’ refers to this. The first wild daffodils are blooming. Along the northern side of the Molenbeekvallei, which is directed to the sun, in the provincial domain of Huizingen, daffodils have been blooming for two weeks. The blooming of common gorse is coming to an end.
The trees sold by public auction in June, are being measured and marked (with a hammer as wooden seal stamp). To measure the trees, the foresters use a digital measuring clamp. After determining the species of tree and measuring its circumference, the bark of the tree is removed with the ax-side of the hammer, and with the Royal stamp-side the shape of a lion is beaten in the heartwood.