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Snakeshead fritillary

June 23, 2012

in Flora & fauna

The snakeshead fritillary (Fritillaria meleagris) is one of the loveliest and most distinctive British wildflowers. Its large, papery flowers hang from delicate grass-like stalks, with a  chequerboard pattern in its petals that comes alive when lit from behind. It isn’t the pattern that gets its name, however, but the way the half-opened flower seems to rear like a snake’s head from the grass in which it grows.

 

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