Parents warned they could be fined £5k if children pick flowers outside

picking flowers
(Image credit: Getty Images/RooM RF)

A daily walk outside is one of the few joys of lockdown, but parents have been warned about children picking flowers.

Parents can be fined if children are picking flowers from forbidden areas across the UK.

The Wildlife and Countryside Act of 1981 and the Theft Act of 1968 could make it illegal to pick flowers from woods, roadsides and parks.

Experts from Gardening Express say that most flowers growing in council parks are off-limits to visitors.

Other sites include any council-maintained nature reserves, and even roundabouts.

Chris Bonnett told The Sun, "Don’t ever pick flowers in public parks, community gardens, or on National Trust property or nature reserves.

“This includes flowers from roundabouts, which are maintained by councils."

picking flowers

Credit: Getty Images

In addition to council-maintained locations, some plants are a protected species.

Chris added, "All wild plants are given some sort of protection under the laws of the UK and the Republic of Ireland, making it illegal to uproot or pick a large majority.

"And if any rare or endangered plants are growing near your home, you could face arrest, up to six months imprisonment and a maximum £5,000 fine for picking them."

There's also guidance on picking flowers without being at risk of a fine.

If you're in a site which isn't privately owned or endangered, you're able to pick some.

Chris advises, "You are allowed to pick flowers which are not privately owned or critically endangered – but only one in every twenty, and only from patches where there are lots of flowers, so you leave plenty for others to enjoy.

“You should also leave a substantial amount of the plant to allow it to continue to grow."

He added, "Intentionally picking, uprooting or destroying a plant without permission from the landowner or occupier is an offence, and you should never pick any flower found in the Schedule 8 list of protected plants."

So remember to stay vigilant on your walks!

Lucy Buglass
Digital Writer

Lucy Buglass is a Digital Writer for What's on TV,, and Woman&Home. After finishing her degree in Film Studies at Oxford Brookes University she moved to London to begin her career. She's passionate about entertainment and spends most of her free time watching Netflix series, BBC dramas, or going to the cinema to catch the latest film releases.