Go on Instagram or blogs at certain times of the year and you can be certain of one thing. You’ll see seasonal flower shots and lots of them. Children in fields or woodlands surrounded by flowers. Whole family photo shoots in autumn leaves. It’s cliched, but if you’re into photography, and like to have seasonal photos, then you can’t really get away from them that much.
So as the saying goes if you can’t beat them, join them. You may as well get the bonus photos for your photo albums too.
We’re lucky because we live in the countryside so many of these sights are easily available. If you can find them that is. Some flowers can be seen in gardens, some in woodlands, some in fields. We seem to be fairly limited in woodlands with bluebells near us for example, but there’s plenty on the rural verges. All very pretty, but not practical for taking photos. So here’s some tips on understanding the floral season, perfect for blogging and instagram.
Tips to find seasonal photography locations
- Google is your friend – look at National Trust website, Forestry Commission, Woodland Trust, local nature reserve websites, NGS members open their gardens
- Use Facebook – local facebook groups maybe annoying most of the time, but if you want to know where the best place is to find poppy fields then ask the question because someone is bound to know
- Use local village websites – they might have local maps with nature reserves marked, or previous photos you can use for ideas of the local area.
- Social media – stalk instagram. Most people will share where their photos were taken, and you can then use google for more details on the exact location
Of course, once you’ve spotted or found your location, don’t forget to be aware of the location and the owners. Just because there’s a public footpath through a field doesn’t mean you can walk through the middle of it. And please take your rubbish away with you. You wouldn’t believe how many people leave litter on footpaths when you’d expect them to appreciate the countryside more if they’re walking in it.
Keep to the footpaths, keep dogs on leads, don’t park in gateways (or leave gates open if they were shut) and don’t let children run amok in fields.
If you’ve spotted pretty flowers in people’s gardens, ask them if you can take photos. Or use a zoom lens so you’re less obvious. I’d also try and keep any identifying features out of the photo if you’re sharing it on social media – so no house names, licence plates or road signs in shot. If you lived in a pretty street you wouldn’t really want the whole world turning up in your garden.
Someone we used to know in our childhood village lived in an amazing barn conversion property with a beautiful courtyard. They woke up one morning, heard voices, looked out of the window and found a group of Japanese tourists who’d just wandered in through the gate, up the front garden and into the courtyard and were taking photos! And that was before the days of Instagram so I imagine home owners get a lot more annoyance nowadays.
Calendar of instagrammable floral season blooms
Don’t forget these will vary according to year, weather, location and soil conditions. Some have short flowering season, others will last for a full season.
April: bluebells, tulips, cherry blossom, hawthorn
May: magnolia, wisteria, rapeseed fields, apple blossom, cow parsley on road verges
May-June: peonies, poppies
June-July: roses (look for National Trust, National Garden Society, summer fetes with flower competitions), strawberries (pick your own or in the garden), rhododendron (late flowering, early in March)
Jun-Aug: Lavender, sunflowers
Summer (to September): hydrangea, dahlia
Autumn: coloured leaves, pumpkins and don’t forget to look for beautiful flowers as they decay.
Winter: berries, fir cones, wreaths
Download the printable floral season calendar
If you want to be more organised than just randomly driving around villages and rural roads on the look out for beautiful florals, why not visit a commercial flower field.
- Mayfield Lavender Farm, Norfolk lavender, Yorkshire lavender
- Tulip fields – try around Spalding or Norfolk or this tulip festival
- Confetti fields, Pershore – only open 1 week a year
- Beautiful flower fields arounds the world
- Glebe Farm sunflowers
Do you succumb to floral season addiction and take photos with your family? Where would you recommend for finding amazing flowers to photograph?
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