This year the wildflowers in Lanzarote have been spectacular. The transformation of what can usually be described as a barren volcanic landscape after rain is amazing! Following two really dry winters, the rainfall in early January 2021 was met with some relief by local farmers & gardeners.
It’s been joyful to walk a variety of footpaths over the past few weeks in the north of Lanzarote. The predominance of flowers have changed weekly.
The first to bloom with any significance was these yellow flowers, known locally as relinchón canario, they are endemic to the Canary Islands (Erucastrum canariense) and from the Brassicaceae family.
The valley of Haria changed from vibrant green to luminous yellow in a matter of days in mid January. These yellow meadows had locals flocking to the countryside to take selfies and enjoy picnics.
Gradually the blue of the Echium lancerottense began to filter through. This plant is endemic to Lanzarote and also known as “lengua vaca” (translates to cow tongue) or “viborina de Lanzarote”. Whilst the overall appearance from a distance is a blue field, the flower is a mixture of blue and pink. It has fine prickles on the stems and is best avoided with direct skin contact.
The next flower is really interesting as it only appears when conditions are right. It has been 6 years since the Matthiola bolleana last flowered in Lanzarote, when it blanketed the landscape by Puerto Calero in Feb 2015. This year in we’ve also spotted it flowering in Tahíche, Güime and Conil. The Bolleana species is dedicated to Carl August Bolle, a German naturalist who visited the Canary Islands in 1852 and 1856. Known locally as Alhelí Canario. Endemic to Lanzarote & Fuerteventura.
In early February fields of white started appearing in Máguez when the Margaritas bloomed (Chrysanthemum coronarium). These large daisy flowers are also known locally as Pajitos. Guatiza is a great place to head for if you want to see fields full of Margaritas.
After the Margaritas, bright red poppies Amapola triste (sad) or peluda (hairy) are now adding to the mix of meadow flowers. You can also find pink poppies know locally as Amapola borracha (drunk) or loca (mad)!
Whilst we are mentioning wild flowers, it would be a shame not to mention some of my individual favourites to look out for. These won’t be found in any great number, you may just be lucky to see them on your walks around the countryside of Lanzarote.
If you’d like to experience the wildflowers in Lanzarote, they can generally be seen anytime from November to February, depending on the rainfall. Do let us know if you’d like more detailed information on walks or areas to concentrate on to find any of these wildflowers.