A virtual tour of the Snowdrops for WI Members.

Ladies, you are invited to a virtual tour of my snowdrops as unfortunately we still can’t be together, hopefully by next year I will be able to invite you all to come  round once more  to see the snowdrops .I know the heading says “for WI Members” but my usual readers are also invited to come with us as we wander round my tiny woodland looking at snowdrops and other flowers which are braving the winter weather at the moment, so far just frost or torrential rain for us while the rest of the country is struggling with snow. Your visits usually happen at this time of year and start with  coffee and cake, but I’m afraid this time you will have to make it yourself,  it might be a good idea to have your mug of coffee with you as this could take some time! We will start with the flowers by the drive where you usually park your cars.

Hellebore standing up very well to all our rain.

Still in the same bed by the drive, these narcissus should not be almost flowering now, I’ve never known them this early before.

Camellia by the house is covered in buds, it is going to look amazing.

Come round to the side where we will find more flowers.

Do you remember the old tin bath that was used for my brother and myself during the war. It is now home to iris reticulata and crocus, but only one is flowering at the moment.

By the back door, the Chaenomeles ( quince) is flowering and has been since November, I rely on this plant for colour all through the winter and it never lets me down.

If we go up onto the lawn we will get to the start of the snowdrops.

The first “special” that we come to is G. Trumps, he is big, he is bold and he is marching across the border as if he owned it!

In spite of his thuggish habits, the markings on Trumps are beautiful.

Galanthus Sprite which is fairly new but increasing nicely.

G. elwesii, one of my earlier purchases, this one has variable markings.

G. Robin Hood in the back border is looking lovely in the rare bit of sunshine last week!

A couple of special doubles in the border in front of the woodland.

Into the woodland now and the first large clump is G. Little John, he is a large snowdrop and catches the eye every time I cross the bridge.

G. Little John has nice markings too!

Narcissus Rijnveld’s Early Sensation were late this year. They are supposed to be flowering by Christmas and up until this year that is what they have always done, but this year the buds didn’t open until the middle of January, I wonder why?

G. Merlin, one of my first “specials”, bought many years ago now.

Lovely dainty G. St. Anne.

G. Atkinsii in the front with G. Magnet behind. The woodland floor is beginning to look very white.

G. Lord Lieutenant standing proudly in the woodland.

G. Atkinsii, flowers wide open, they look as though they are about to take off.

G. Magnet was also one of my first ones and as you can see, increases very well.

Little Crocus tommasinianus are just starting to flower. I pulled up loads of ivy when I was tidying the leaves and found that they had been seeding themselves under it, so I should have a nice large splash of purple among all the snowdrops soon.

The sun came out later and opened the crocus for any passing bee. Bees only fly when the temperature is above 10C and the crocus only open when it is above 10C, so that pollen and nectar are available.  Isn’t nature wonderful!

G. Madelaine is fairly new but she is doing well with her yellow markings.

Very pretty G. Ermine Lace.

G. Hobsons Choice is the large clump with G. Ivy Cottage Corporal to the left of it.

G. Ivy Cottage Corporal has inner markings just like a corporals stripes.

G. Lapwing are maybe past their best now but I had to include them as I like them so much. This is on the little slope at the school end of the woodland, yes, you’re only half way round!

G. Diggory puffed out as he should be with his lovely textured petals.

G. Wendy’s Gold is waiting for some warm weather before she opens her flowers to show her yellow inner markings.

G. Jaquenetta is a beautiful double snowdrop, with a full skirt and lovely markings.

G. Jack in the Green, yes, it reminds me of lovely meals out with the undergardener! Nice clear markings with super dark green leaves. This is now on the newish path made a couple of years ago to extend the planting.

All white Godfrey Owen.

Louise Ann Bromley is a big girl, she is the same size as Little John! all the snowdrops planted along the new path have settled in well and are increasing nicely, some are still to open their flowers so will have a post to themselves later.

G. Cotswold Beauty is fairly new but increasing nicely, with all green inner petals.

Species Galanthus woronowii is seeding about happily at the end of the woodland, making a nice drift of its own.

Back out of the woodland and the last clumps of snowdrops are on the rockery.

G Angelique is increasing well and soon I will be able to spread her around to make more. It has made me realise that I need more snowdrops on the rockery to be able to see them from the house, any excuse to buy some more!

Yellow G. Spindlestone Surprise has been moved to the rockery from the border with Trumps. He was charging through the border pushing through everything that was there, so I thought it better to move Spindlestone out of his way, I’m glad it survived the move!

Other flowers that you might have noticed while wandering round are…..

Iris reticulata Pauline suddenly pops up every January, she’s very reliable!

The camellia in the corner by the school always starts flowering in November, another reliable one.

A different Iris reticulata on the alpine scree.

Iris unguicularis by the dining room window, this flowers on and off all winter and looks too delicate to survive , but somehow they manage.

Leucojum vernum, the spring snowflake, on the rockery is a different family from snowdrops which are in the Galanthus family. The flowers are more like Tiffany lampshades.

Also on the rockery are a few Cyclamen coum, but I must get more as they make such a nice splash of colour.

For some time there has been the most delicious perfume in the woodland, coming from a small shrub, Sarcococca. The flowers are almost over now and they are only tiny, but they certainly pack a punch!

Just as the flowers of Sarcococca are fading, the perfume now comes from Daphne bholua in the corner. When the wind is in the right direction, from the west, the whole woodland smells delightful!

Now for the hellebores, please excuse my hand, but the only way I can photograph them! This one is on the rockery.

This is my one of my favourites, in the corner by the school.

Lovely, just like  blackberry ripple ice cream!

Another with a beautiful dark nectary, and a thin edging of the same colour, very classy!

Still waiting to be planted, poor thing. I think its new home will be on the rockery as I need more hellebores there.

I planted some crocus in the back lawn, but only a few have started flowering as yet, I’ll have to do another post when they are all up and flowering.

I’ll just finish with a few long views in the woodland.

All through lockdown I have been busy getting the back garden and woodland ready for you as though you were coming, even though I knew there was no chance of that.  There were so many leaves to rake up so that the snowdrops could be seen properly, I have never known so many before, my poor arms ached every day! I still have more to do on the rockery, then I will be sorted. Normally I have help to get everything ready for snowdrops, originally it was the undergardener who helped me and then various gardeners, but this year my present gardener decided to have 2 months holiday and I haven’t seen him since before Christmas and I won’t see him again until March 3rd! In spite of this I have had company during lockdown……

….this is who has kept me company, he/she swoops down as soon as I come out of the back door, I have to be careful where I put my feet. Once I start work it is diving between my feet to pounce on anything that wriggles, at the same time singing to me! Lovely companion.

Working in the garden has been my salvation this last year, especially this latest lockdown, it has been wonderful being out in the garden nearly every day, breathing in the fresh air and seeing all the bulbs starting to pop their noses up, I realise how lucky I am.  I hope you all enjoyed your wander round with me, at least you didn’t have to bring your waterproofs and wellies this time! Hopefully we will all be able to meet up again soon, I had my first vaccination last week and I’m sure most of you have had yours,  we must all stay safe for a bit longer before we can start seeing each other at our meetings once more. Thank you for your company, I hope you enjoyed your visit!

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24 Responses to A virtual tour of the Snowdrops for WI Members.

  1. Liz Goodwin says:

    As beautiful as ever. Thank you so much for ‘The Tour’. Amazing!

  2. Pat Timms says:

    Absolutely lovely Pauline. What a treat to see all your wonderful spring flowers. The snowdrops are beautiful but my favourites are the hellebores. Truly stunning! Thank you so much for a few minutes of calm and beauty. Pat x

    • Pauline says:

      I’m so glad you enjoyed it Pat, I really needed something to work towards and I just about did it in time, just a mulch of leaf mould to get down now! I agree the hellebores are beautiful, so many lovely colours that show up among the snowdrops.

  3. Just lovely Pauline – really enjoyed your snowdrops and hellebores, so thanks! When you buy a special (expensive) snowdrop, do you put it directly in the ground? What’s your method?

    • Pauline says:

      So glad you enjoyed it Cathy! I have just received my new order from Avon Bulbs with a few more snowdrops, their instructions say to plant them where they are to flower, in between tree and shrub roots which will take up the moisture in the summer, thus keeping them on the dry side and also means they are in the shade. They also say don’t plant them in pots are they are not happy there. I hope this helps.

  4. Denise says:

    Well I have taken my morning coffee with me on my tour and have thoroughly enjoyed my leisurely wander round your garden Pauline. You really have a lovely snowdrop collection which just gets better and better. I am glad your garden, and your little varnade helped is getting you safely through these difficult times.

    • Denise says:

      ….varnade helped……should read garden helper (Swedish spellcheck on by mistake🙄)

    • Pauline says:

      I’m glad you brought your coffee with you Denise, it was quite a long wander! It makes me happy that you enjoyed wandering among the snowdrops, I must stop buying new ones, but I keep seeing gaps that are just crying out for another one! I love meeting up with my robin, it keeps me company for such a long time, I feel honoured.

  5. Cathy says:

    Oh what a lovely post, Pauline – I really enjoyed the comprehensive virtual tour which will have taken a lot of time and effort to prepare for us, so thank you greatly! I am going to try very hard not to buy any new specials next year 😉

    • Pauline says:

      It was a pleasure to do it Cathy, I really needed a deadline to work towards otherwise the amount of work needed would have got on top of me! My new specials have just arrived but I am now thinking that maybe I should stop buying as I don’t know how much longer I’ll be able to live here, the garden seems to get bigger each year. I didn’t buy any last year and didn’t have any withdrawl symptoms, so I know I can do it!

  6. Frank says:

    It looks great! How nice that you were able to do this for the group and also allow us to tag along! Your garden is already so full of interest and it’s such a nice distraction from our snow.
    Actually a little snow can be nice as well, so don’t think I’m just complaining, but your woodland has really come to life and it’s great to see.

    • Pauline says:

      So glad that you could join us Frank and that you enjoyed wandering round with us! All the flowers make a very dull grey day seem so much better, I need them to make me get out of the house each day for some fresh air. Most of the UK is struggling , like you, with snow, but we just keep getting more rain down here in the SW, this might change next week though.

  7. Christina says:

    What a special treat this has been, lovely photos and so much variety besides all the different snowdrops. The beautiful little crocus tommasinianus is a gorgeous colour and maybe I’ll get just a few more special snowdrops this year! Your posts are always inspiring and much appreciated. Thank you.

    • Pauline says:

      Lovely to hear from you Christina, I’m so glad you enjoyed your wander round with the ladies! I love Crocus tommasinianus, he seeds around very generously so more appear each year sometimes in unlikely spots. I think you are now on the slippery slope if you are ordering more “specials”, welcome to the club!

  8. Jon Tyler (and Mum) says:

    A lovely display, Pauline. Thanks for letting us see them.

  9. snowbird says:

    What a wonderful tour, I did enjoy seeing all your wonderful blooms, especially all the delightful snowdrops. I’m so pleased to hear you have been able to garden each day and have now had your vaccination. How lovely having that little robin for company.xxx

    • Pauline says:

      Thanks for joining with us Dina, I’m so glad you enjoyed the snowdrops and the other flowers that are brave enough to flower at this time of year. It’s amazing just how many flowers there are in February, certainly not a dull month! I feel quite disappointed if my robin doesn’t join me, usually it flies down within a couple of minutes of starting work, it seems to think I am just there to feed it!

  10. debsgarden says:

    Thanks for the tour, Pauline! I always enjoy both the long views of your garden as well as the close-ups. My garden has been such a blessing ,too, as our activities are so limited by the pandemic. How wonderful that you have a little robin to visit!

    • Pauline says:

      Lovely to hear from you Debs! I’m glad you enjoyed wandering along with us to see the snowdrops. Just as well that you came when you did as the weather has been dreadful since, freezing cold from the east for a week and now torrential rain for the last week from the west. The flowers don’t seem to mind though, they are still looking very happy.

  11. It’s always a thrill to explore your plantings and especially this year as I’m starved for flowers. Iris reticulata Pauline is a lovely deep color, your snowdrops are impressive and I’m so happy for you to have such richness in your life.

    • Pauline says:

      I think we are all missing our garden visiting this last year Susie, I know I am! Hopefully we will be able to go out once more soon and not be confined to our own gardens, we are still in lockdown at the moment, but the light is at the end of the tunnel. The snowdrops are still giving a wonderful display but now they are joined by lots more flowers of different colours, all looking very pretty.

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