Over 250 flowers flourishing on Scilly

Over 250 flowers flourishing on Scilly
    Your garden may be suffering from the effects of the winter deluge but conditions are blooming marvellous for plants on the Isles of Scilly.

Some 255 flowers were counted as being in bloom by staff at the the Abbey garden at Tresco in the Isles of Scilly, numbering 15 more than last year's total.

Flowers are counted annually at New Year as part of a tradition stretching back over 150 years.

The Isles of Scilly enjoy one of the mildest climates in the country. During winter, the average daytime high is 11 degrees C, while the average minimum is 6 degrees C. 

Mild winters occur as a result of the warming influence of the gulfstream, in which the islands are situated.

Mike Nelhams, the curator of Abbey Garden, told the Telegraph: "Despite the recent weather we were thrilled to be able to count more flowering species against the same time last year."

He added that exotic and common plants had been recorded, which normally don't bloom on the mainland until the summer months.

January may seem like a rather bleak month for flower-lovers in the rest of the UK but if you search carefully, you might be able to spot some hardy species.

Gorse daffodils and snowdrops are the most common flowers in this country during the early months of the year, particularly in gardens. 

However, a number of other plants may flower in January, particularly during mild winters. Dutch Crocus, Green Hellebore, Hazel, Lesser Celandine, Stinking Hellebore and Winter Aconite are among these early bloomers.

If you're a hardy soul and decide to venture out for a spell of unseasonal flower-spotting this month, you'd be well advised to take advantage of the less stormy conditions expected over the next few days. Temperatures are forecast to remain relatively mild in the south but will be average in the north.

Over the long term, unsettled conditions are likely to dominate but further severe storms look unlikely. Drier and brighter conditions may prevail for a time in the south and east of the country.

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