Snowdrops: A Winter Favourite
A much loved winter flower, the gentle Snowdrop is the star of the Winter garden. Often seen in waves of white drifts, popping up through snow and dotting at the foot of country hedgerows. The first of the bulbs to appear in our gardens, let's find out a bit more about these winter favourites.
How do they grow?
Grown from a bulb and flowers in mid to late winter, these plants have single bell-shaped flowers in a delicate snowy white, tipped with fresh green. Multiplying through offsets rather than seeds, new Snowdrops will grow from new bulbs that form from the original bulb. This makes them easy to divide and spread across your garden.
A bit more about the bulbs
Unlike many other bulbs, Snowdrops are planted 'in the green'. Which means they are planted straight after they have finished flowering in February or March. You should plant the bulbs as soon as you get them home, as they dry out quickly.
Where do I plant them?
When planting Snowdrop bulbs, choose a position with well-draining but moist soil. Under large shrubs and under trees are perfect sites. Snowdrops are dormant by the end of the spring and can be left undisturbed throughout the year. If you prefer to use containers, Snowdrops do very well when grown in pots. Take care to keep the soil damp throughout the year, as the bulb are prone to drying out quickly. So keep an eye on them through the summer months!
Do I need to protect them from pests?
Often, the only risk your snowdrops will face, is that of a hungry squirrel. Squirrels may dig up your new planted bulbs whilst searching for nuts and winter food.
What happens after they have flowered?
After your Snowdrops have finished their winter show, you can trim the spent flowers. This will send the energy back down the bulbs, encouraging a good show of flowers next year. If you are going to dig up the bulbs to divide and spread them across the garden, February and March are a good time to do this. After flowers have gone over and the plants have become dormant. It's a good idea to do this every few years.
Where can I visit Snowdrop gardens?
A lot of gardens across the UK hold Snowdrop displays through the mid to late winter. Search online for a garden near you. Seeing snowdrops on a large scale can be really breathtaking and an inspiration for your own garden!