Sunday, February 17, 2013

Spring signs

Galanthus Nivalis

literally the first buds

Galanthus Nivalis flowers in winter but it presages the end of that season. It has three other appealing characteristics: it will poke up undeterred through snow, it spreads over time creating carpets of nodding white flowers, and perhaps best of all: the deer do not like it. I am not sure it is native here but even if not, it seems to be naturalising.

The common name snowdrop first appeared in the 1633 edition of John Gerard's Great Herbal. Other British traditional names include February fairmaids, dingle-dangle, Candlemas bells, Mary's tapers and, in parts of Yorkshire, snow piercers like the French perce-neige or Italian bucaneveAdapted from Wikipedia.

many clusters are now springing up and spreading

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