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Snowdrops (Galanthus)

Snowdrops, not to be confused with their relatives, snowflakes, are also known by the genus galanthus native to a large area of Europe.  They are perennial, herbaceous plants that are grown from bulbs and can be identified by their leafless stalk that holds a bell shaped flower consisting of tepals instead of petals.

 Snowdrops are most commonly seen in woodlands, parks and gardens and by using their hardened leaf stalks to push through icy and frosty ground from January to April snowdrops are usually the first bulbs to bloom. These clever little plants also use bulb division to enable them to spread due to the scarcity of insects for pollination at this time of year. 

Snowdrops (Galanthus)

Chalky soil is suitable for growing snowdrops in but they do tend to thrive better in neutral to alkaline soils. Leafmould is an ideal addition but never use manure, choose a site that is in light shade and ensure to plant deep. Snowdrops do not like to be dry in summer and occasional division may be needed as overcrowded plants can breed disease. Late spring, early summer is the general consensus of optimum planting time however the fun of gardening is to experiment and see what works for you and your garden.

With a variety of snowdrops to choose from all varying in height, colour, size and shape you will be simply spoilt for choice and as your garden starts to wake up during those bleak months you will be sure to find yourself an honorary member of the ‘Snowdrop Appreciation Society’.

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