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Snowdrops - Success and Joy

Updated: Mar 10, 2020

The arrival of snowdrops is most welcome this time of year.

I have snowdrops in my garden. – success and joy. So what, you may say, as I am sure many of you have healthy clumps of them all over the place but I have tried for years unsuccessfully. In one garden they grew happily in the compost heap but refused to grow anywhere else. Our Welsh garden was overshadowed by deciduous trees so I thought it would be ideal but not a single snowdrop. I blamed the squirrels but it could just be my ineptitude. Here in Dunsfold, I tried again but got one lonely flower one year and that was it. I had come to think snowdrops were something to be admired only in other people’s gardens but never my own.

Then last February we visited Welford Park and the snowdrops were so gorgeous I was inspired to try again. I bought some bulbs in the green from a grower’s stall at Welford Park. I knew enough that they needed to be planted in the green but this time I shared my difficulties and asked for advice. He said to plant them about 4 inches deep somewhere where they will get some sunshine but not so much they dry out. The key learning point for me was that they don’t like being disturbed. I had been doing too much fiddling and weeding around them, so the answer is to weed less. (I like that advice) I took my bulbs home, put them in places where I won’t weed and now I have snowdrops. Magic!

I expect most of you know all that but perhaps there are some plants you have been trying to grow without success. A few handy hints might be all that is needed and gardeners are always generous with their advice. Gardening offers so many life lessons and my snowdrop lessons are “Don’ be shy about asking” and “Keep trying”

I know I have mentioned Welford Park in Berkshire before but I shall mention it again because it quite special. There are carpets of snowdrops though the beech woods and they pop up everywhere, in the paths, in crevices, on banks. It’s a good day out where you can walk through the woods and some lovely cake in the café. You can take dogs on the lead and there is a separate café in a marquee where you can take dogs. This year they are open from Wednesdays to Sundays from 29thJanuary to 1st March. You can check their website for details.

Back to Dunsfold and Hascombe, and I am pleased to say that Sheri is working hard to get some events sorted out and she has some exciting ideas. Please look out for adverts and enjoy our new look Society.

I hope 2020 brings you many gardening successes and much happiness.

By Sandy Gray

For the Parish Newsletter February 2020

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