There are snowdrops as far as the eye can see at Bodnant Garden and with a little help from visitors there will soon be 20,000 more.
Our Old Park meadow is carpeted with Galanthus nivalis right now and we’ll be planting more from February 22 to March 2, when visitors can drop by and lend a hand from 11am to 1pm.
The Old Park is thought to be the oldest part of the original garden dating back to the Georgian era. It was landscaped in the naturalistic style of the day, planted with native trees and with a ha-ha ditch to keep livestock away from the main house. Today it’s a rolling meadow filled with snowdrops in winter, daffodils in spring, wild flowers and grasses in summer and in autumn sheep graze under the dazzling leaf colour of those now stately old oak and beech trees.
We’ve been planting snowdrops in the Old Park for the last five years to ensure a bigger and better display in the future and we’d love visitors to come and help – the more the merrier. It’s something all the family can enjoy doing, and come back and enjoy again next year, as one of our Twitter followers Tu Hwnt i’r Bont tearoom commented recently: “Lovely mooch around Bodnant Garden in the sunshine today. Admiring the snowdrops five-year-old old son helped to plant.”
Galanthus nivalis is native to Europe. It’s name comes from the Greek gala (meaning milk) and anthos (flower). It was first described and named by the botanist Carl Linnaeus in 1735, who also added the word nivalis meaning ‘of the snow’. It naturalises and spreads readily and is now a common sight in woodlands and back gardens…a welcome first sign of coming spring. And the best time to plant them is now when they are in flower, or ‘in the green’.
As well as common snowdrops in the Old Park we’ve got more unusual species for you to admire in our Winter Garden. It’s also a great opportunity to take part in our 2014 Photography Competition ‘I Love Bodnant Garden’. We’re asking people to tell us why the garden means so much to them, in pictures. The winning shots will be made into a 2015 Bodnant Garden calendar.
No booking is required for the snowdrop planting and all plants and equipment are provided, but for information contact Bodnant Garden on 01492 650460. For details of our photography competition see our website www.nationaltrust.org.uk/bodnant-garden or see the competition page here on our blog.