Daffodil or primrose, which do you prefer? And why is yellow the perfect colour of Spring? We started quite a debate last week asking readers what their favourite springtime colour was.
Carefully sitting on the fence, the longer the discussion went on the harder it was for us to decide which bloom we would prefer to see: a daffodil or a primrose.
A picture of spring
Truth is, we rather like both, and add a clump of bluebells or grape hyacinth into the mix and we think you’ve got a perfect springtime picture! Which has led us to consider why we all like the sight of these bright spring flowers so much.
A primary colour on the spectrum, yellow is an optimistic colour. It is associated with happiness and joy, so it makes sense that the first colours of a new season should be this warming, welcoming shade.
Yellow, more than any other colour on the spectrum, catches our attention – and there is nothing hard to spot about a clump of hedgerow daffodils! But the humble primrose, tucked at the bottom of a tree trunk is also a welcoming sight – just not in quite such a bold, ‘look at me’ kind of a way.
But these blooms are not the first sign that winter is nearing its end and making way for spring. For that, we need to seek out the crocus, but these are only likely to grab your attention if planted en masse. So why are these delicate petals not so imprinted on our seasonal memories as their larger, showier daffodil cousins?
Yellow is the most visible colour on the spectrum, and the shade that our eyes process the fastest. Which goes some way to explaining why the colour stands out in fields or woodlands, and why we notice distant specks of daffodils. And why we remember the colour when we spot it in nature, more so than the purple or white of a crocus.
In Eastern mythology, yellow is associated with luck, being the closest shade to gold, which reflects rewards and riches in many cultures.
It is also the colour of the sun, which is considered a lucky emblem by many cultures around the world.
Crisis teams – coastguards, search and rescue – wear the colour yellow. Not just to make them more visible, but because it is a symbol of hope and optimism.
In case you still need convincing that yellow is the perfect colour for spring, take a look at the science! The colour yellow stimulates serotonin production in our brains, which is the feel-good chemical.
And it is a shade that can help beat depression – yellow glow lights are recommended as a small change to your living environment that can make a positive impact if you suffer this condition.
We will enjoy our daffodils and primrose sightings over the coming weeks, and a weekend walk on the moors reminded us that gorse is a flower that loves to capture our attention. Against a backdrop of a brilliant blue sky, it is not hard to appreciate the glorious switch in the seasons, whichever flower captures our eye.