We have made a start, a return, after the interruption of winter, to more regular working in the garden, something made possible by the unseasonably dry weather here since Christmas. We had a couple of full days outside at the start of the week but were set back again by showers and a bitter breeze in the last few days. We managed to tidy up a few of the borders and even to cut and edge the grass as the ground was sufficiently dry and firm to allow us run the mower.
The common snowdrop, Galanthus nivalis, and its double form, Galanthus nivalis flore pleno, are in flower at the moment, a flowering which marks the mid-season of the snowdrop year. The earlier snowdrops, those which flower before Christmas or in the early New Year, have finished now and I have been lifting, dividing and replanting a number of the larger groups to maintain good health and vigour. It is often a time of reappraisal also and some rather ordinary, even unattractive, varieties will be moved to more background situations, under deciduous shrubs and trees where they will be clearly visible when in flower and hidden by the growth of shrubs and herbaceous plants during the rest of the year. Many snowdrops are simply that, good background plants, attractive patches of white to catch the eye in the winter garden. Not all are worthy of front of border positions to be viewed and examined in detail.
And, a selection of snowdrop views around the garden this Sunday afternoon – just snowdrops!
Mid season is a difficult time to describe and photograph for there is the danger of lingering over those snowdrops which flowered earlier but are still hanging on in reasonable condition or to run to those just emerging but not yet quite showing of their best. This brings the danger of repetition which can be tiresome so I will do my best to restrain myself, something I never do with my camera, and confine snowdrop mentions to those which are their best at present.
Some favourite vignettes at the moment, mainly the combination of snowdrops with Cyclamen coum, click to enlarge:
And, finally, probably with some repetition of snowdrops shown on previous posts – though all these shots were taken this week – a selection of what caught my eye in the garden this week:
It’s not all sunshine and light: It took an afternoon to clear Geranium x cantabrigense ‘Karmina’ from this bed. I had considered it a good companion plant for the snowdrops for several years but I have lost a number of varieties from this bed and those which survive have been badly eaten by slugs, something which doesn’t happen elsewhere in the garden. I have been told that the geranium would attract the Swift Moth whose pupae eat the bulbs and I feel that has happened. So, the geranium is gone and I think I’ll plant more Cyclamen coum here. That combination has worked well elsewhere.