Take a walk among the snowdrops
Wandering around gardens taking in the sights and scents of a plethora of plants is a wonderful thing to do. Clusters of snowdrops, clumps of daffodils, beautiful climbing plants, glorious shrubs, bushes and trees. Take a peak at the results of someone else’s horticultural labours – it is the next best thing to actually doing it yourself. It is an activity from which many a gardener has gained inspiration.
The National Open Gardens Scheme (NGS) has become a great tradition among gardeners and would-be gardeners since its inception more than 90 years ago.
What is the National Open Gardens Scheme
The NGS was founded as a charity event in 1927. The idea was to open gardens of “quality, character and interest” to the public. It is a tradition that has grown and grown. From the expansive grounds of stately homes to the efficiently planted flower beds and vegetable patches of terraced houses, gardeners are throwing open their gates to the public.
See the snowdrops at Rookery Farm
At Chestnut Farm, part of the Rookery Farm estate, we have opened our gardens to the public on Sunday 25 February and Sunday 4 March. A highlight of the gardens at this time of year are the tremendous swathes of snow drops. This year they are growing abundantly and this fragile and beautiful early spring flower is a sight to behold.
The flowers are growing all over the farm, among the trees and along the path verges. Unbelievably, there are more than 90 varieties of snow drops growing on the farm.
It is not just the snow drops that are making their shy appearance at the moment. This is the time of year when the garden begins its transformation from cold, grey and still to colourful and active. Crocuses are springing up all over the place, alongside other spring flowers. You can almost see the flowers opening and stretching their heads towards the wintry sunshine as you move among them.
If you are looking for a place to take a stroll and indulge in some quite and relaxing time among nature, then do pop in for a visit.
As well as offering visitors a visual experience, the National Gardens Scheme is a fabulous way to get inspiration for your own garden.
A little information about snowdrops
Known as the ‘snow piercer’ snowdrops buds are shaped so they can pierce frozen snow.
Snow drop enthusiasts are known as galanthophiles. They are named after the plant’s botanical handle Galanthus. This comes from the Greek word ‘gala’, meaning ‘milk’, and ‘anthos’, meaning ‘flower’.
There are hundreds of varieties with minute differences in form and colour. They are all white but with various markings that may be yellow or green. Flowers can be single or double, large and small.
To grow snowdrops with any success plant them now. Snowdrop bulbs are sensitive to drying out and, while dry bulbs can be planted in autumn with a fair degree of success, those that have been planted in the spring will thrive.