Anglesey can boast 1412 taxa (species and hybrids) of vascular plants. Of these 940 are native taxa.
A native plant is one that grows in an area without having been deliberately or accidentally introduced by mankind. Though the majority of these plants have been in Britain for thousands of years, this category also includes hybrids and new taxa that were generated naturally within the area. Naturally-formed hybrids are regarded as native, irrespective of whether their parents were introduced by mankind. An archaeophyte, of which Anglesey has 113 recorded, is a naturalised plant that was introduced by mankind before AD1500. A neophyte (256 in Anglesey) is a naturalised plant that was introduced by mankind after AD1500.
Anglesey's county flower is the spotted rock rose Tuberaria guttata which grows in coastal heathlands at a few locations on the west of the island. Other notable species include the endemic South Stack fleawort Tephroseris integrifolia ssp maritima (found only on the cliffs of Holy Island) and shore dock Rumex rupestris found here at its northern limit at Newborough Warren.
The diversity of geology underlying the island, including acid igneous and metamorphic rocks, carboniferous limestone, ultrabasic serpentine, along with glacial sand, silt and clay and quaternary peat and marl deposits help to account for the great range of flora. The occurrence of coastal and inland areas, standing and running waters further increases the diversity of opportunity for the island's flora.
Many of the road verges of the island retain wildflowers of interest, with early purple orchids, bee orchids, common spotted orchids and bloody cranesbill apparent where cutting regimes after flowering remove competitive species.
Good places for botanical exploration include Tywyn Aberffraw dunes, the shores of Red Wharf Bay (Traeth Coch), Cors Goch National Nature Reserve, all the coast of Holy Island (Ynys Gybi) ... in fact almost anywhere other than the 86% of Anglesey that is sheep-grazed pasture!
Giffiths J. E., 1895. The Flora of Anglesey and Caernarvonshire.
Roberts R. H. 1982. The Flowering Plants and Ferns of Anglesey. National Museum of Wales, Cardiff.
A full list of the rare and threatened flora of Anglesey will be available here soon.