‘MILK FLOWER OF THE SNOW’ by rose
One of the first flowers to arrive in the cold depths of winter, the humble snowdrop is a ray of hope and beauty. We might be mistaken for thinking them delicate and fragile as they hang their heads in the frost and snow. But as the weak rays of sunlight brush their slender leaves, these soldiers of winter hold their heads high in defiance.
Peppering your garden with Galanthus nivalis is a simple task. Planting the blubs ‘in the green’ is the best way to allow these bulbs to establish and naturalise. Simply lift and divide an existing clump of snowdrops after they have flowered in the spring and replant, or order bulbs online for planting in March.
Like us, snowdrops come in different shapes and sizes, with single simple petals or ruffled double complicated flower heads. Tall and short, grand and modest. Take your pick.
This is Lavinia, one of the Shakespeare’s lady collections bred in Norfolk from the tallest and most vigorous plants. A favourite in these parts with plants thriving here on the Suffolk coast.
To a snowdrop
Lone flower, hemmed in with snows, and white as they
But hardier far, once more I see thee bend
Thy forehead as if fearful to offend,
Like an unbidden guest. Though day by day
Storms sallying from the mountain-tops, waylay
The rising sun, and on the plains descend;
Yet art though welcome, welcome as a friend
Whose zeal outruns his promise! Blue-eyed May
Shall soon behold this border thickly set
With bright jonquils, their odours lavishing
On the soft west-wind and his frolic peers;
Nor will I then thy modest grace forget,
Chaste snowdrop, venturous harbinger of spring,
And pensive monitor of fleeting years.
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