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Our famous snowdrops...

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Our famous snowdrops...

Thanks to the gorgeous recent warm weather, our snowdrops are now officially over and our daffs are now out.  We've had a long blooming season this year, thanks to a warm December and cold snap in early February - if you didn't see them, do make a date to return at the start of 2020.  You might also like to visit our Facebook page for the latest pictures from us (and our visitors).

So what do you need to know about snowdrops?  The little white blooms are much-loved as the early harbingers of spring, and are usually showing their delicate white flowers in February.  However, in the warm winters of recent years, they've been blooming early, with many out at the start of January.  This year has been no exception.

No one knows when snowdrops arrived in the UK from southern Europe, but the name snowdrop first appeared in 1633.  It's one of our most cultivated plants.

Here at Painswick, there will be over five million snowdrops to see blooming this spring.  No one knows how they got here, but their number and natural beauty makes them one of Gloucestershire's must-see events.  There are 15 varieties in total here in the Garden, with the most famous being Galanthus "Atkinsii", a particularly tall and handsome snowdrop.  This was discovered here in the 1800s by James Atkins, who lived in an estate cottage here.

The main collection of snowdrops is in the Snowdrop Grove, with more modern varieties above the maze.

For those who like their science... Dissecting their Latin name "galanthus"... "Gala" is Greek for milk.  "Anthos" means "flower" and "Nivalis" means of the "snow".  The genus has 20 species, and there are over 1500 varieties and cultivars, with more being cultivated all the time.  Flowering time is mainly January to March but some will flower at other times.  They grow in moist well drained soil.  Propagation is by seed, in the green or by micro propagation.

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