Bavaria is a state of Germany, located in the southeast region of the country. The Alps and meadows of Bavaria are well known for their flowers and very popular for hiking. The best time to see the flowers is from early spring through summer. When hiking the Bavarian countryside, it is tempting to pick a bouquet. Take pictures instead because many flowers of the region are protected and some are endangered.
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Cyclamen purpurascens is a woodland plant that grows in shady to partially shady deciduous and evergreen woods around rocks and at the base of trees. Flowering between June and July, they range in colour from light pink to carmine. The leaves are roughly kidney- or heart-shaped and usually have silver white markings. It is a hardy plant, tolerating temperatures as low as minus-28 degrees Celsius.
2 edelweiss image by John Maldoror from Fotolia.com
Leontopodium alpinum or Edelweiss flowers are perennials from the sunflower family. In German, "edel" means noble and "weiss" means white. Edelweiss grow in rocky limestone at an altitude of 6,000 to 8,000 feet. The flowers are small, white and surrounded by star-shaped leaves covered in soft white wool. A beloved and protected flower, Edelweiss is a hardy plant that blooms between July and September.
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Galanthus nivalis or snowdrop is a white flower from the Amaryllis family that looks like three drops of milk. The Greek name galanthus means "milkflower" and nivalis is a Latin word that means "like snow." Snowdrops, one of the earliest bloomers in spring, are very hardy and unpalatable to wildlife.
Saxifraga oppositifolia or purple saxifrage is an evergreen perennial that often flowers while there is still snow on the ground. The flowers have small scale like leaves and grow on short stems. Ranging in colour from pale pink to deep purple, purple saxifrage is a hardy plant that can grow in rocky ground.
Pinguicula alpine or alpine butterwort is a perennial herb with narrow, lance-shaped leaves. This hardy little plant with white flowers is an insectivore that catches and digests tiny flying insects. Flowering in June and July, the alpine butterwort grows on damp rock faces, beside streams and in wetlands.
Antennaria dioica is also called mountain everlasting, kattfot and catsfoot. A perennial herb from the daisy family, it grows in dense patches favouring dry and sunny rocks, meadows, roadsides and field edges. The flower is white or pink with fine feathery heads that blooms in June and July.
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Campanula cochleariifolia or Bavarian blue fairy thimble is compact little evergreen perennial with bell shaped nodding flowers. The flower colour ranges from white to pale violet and the leaves area bright green. The fairy thimble grows in sunny mountain areas and blooms from late spring through fall.