Dreaming of Snowdrops

SnowdropsNow that the snow has decided to take a few day hiatus (probably to some snow spa to prepare it for the last snowstorm of the season) the early spring flowers have had a chance to stretch their petals and get some sunshine. In particular, the snowdrops have made quite a showing in my garden. I love snowdrops. It means that the torture is almost over.

True to garden naming form, while you might think that the name snowdrop has anything to with the fact that they bloom while we still have snow, you would be completely wrong. They are, in fact, named for a type of earring that was popular with Germans a few centuries ago.

Snowdrops are interesting little flowers, in that they are bulbs, but you will never find them for sale in your local Home Depot. Well, you might, but I would HIGHLY recommend that you don’t buy them as chances are they are dead. Snowdrops should be planted “in the green”. Dry bulbs have a difficult time surviving and establishing. Most reputable plant nurseries will have some stored in a fridge in the autumn.

I am in good company when it comes to my love of snowdrops. There are a few Gods and Goddesses that have take a keen liking to them as well. Mercury used them as a pharmaceutical and Brigid offered them as a promise of Spring’s return.

Apparently, it is not coincidence that snowdrops start me dreaming of Spring. Like little spring ‘shrooms, these plants have the power to make vivid dreams. An extract from the plant has been found to enhance dreaming. The substance galantamine in the plant is responsible for this. But, while better dreaming is pretty cool, better reality is even nicer. This substance is FDA approved for treatment of mild Alzheimer’s disease. It makes for more vivid reality in those who have started to slip away to a permanent dream world.

*sigh* The snow will be back in a few days (in better cold shape than ever, I bet) and the snowdrops will be hidden again. But I will know they are there which, without even having to ingest them like the desperate garden druggie I am, will bring me vivid dreams of my garden to come.

14 thoughts on “Dreaming of Snowdrops
  1. I love your picture of snowdrops – I was also relieved to know you weren’t dreaming of real snowdrops – just pretty flowers. I’ve had enough winter to last a lifetime.

    I did not know it’s better to plant snowdrops “in the green” – that’s welcome info. Thanks for posting that. And I really hope we don’t get that “last snowstorm” you mention. I’ve done a radical thing and put my shovel away. I DON’T want to get it out again!

    Good post.

    Connie

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  2. I came to your blog today to download the What Kind Of Flower Are You or found you through them somehow. Anyway, I love your blog and signed up for emails when you post. Thanks for sharing. Your blog is great!

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  3. Jackie H on

    Oh how pretty those are! Better planted in the green huh? I will definitely keep that in mind! I just came in from my flower beds and everything that should be pushing up, is, though I found damage where I have some bulbs showing through… hmmmm… darn little rodents! My birdhouses are now clean again waiting to see what type stakes their claim first! But gees, I heard there is a chance of snow showers tomorrow! Ugh!! I am so ready for Spring!!

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  4. Love your snowdrops and that answers my question of why mine did not come up several years ago when i tried some. I will try them again! They are beautiful little things.
    meg

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  5. I am trying to establish a colony of double snowdrops. They are very cool, though you must lift their little heads to see the whorls of tiny green-=tipped petals. That being said, I like snowdrops mainly because, as you mention, they signify the beginnings of more flowers to come.

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  6. Thanks for the post. I love snowdrops too. I have lots in my garden because I aggressively divide them just after the flowers fade but before the seed capsule opens. You then get both the bulbs and fresh seeds in the new spot. Another reason to love them is that deer don’t eat them!

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  7. Oh those are beautiful! Maybe I should expand my veggie garden obsession to include flowers 😉 Here’s hoping the snow is gone for this winter.

    Anita

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  8. Wow, and I thought galanthus were just my favorite spring bulb! Treatment for alzheimer’s, dream enhancer, german earrings? More to love..thanks for the wealth of info. Happy Spring!

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  9. I do exactly what Sue does and divide them as soon as they go over. You can pot up fading snowdrops for a few months if you don’t have time to get them into the ground … it just keeps them in an identifiable place until you find time to replant them. If you let them die down they are almost impossible to find when you do want to dig them up. You can divide and transplant lily of the valley the same way, and they are a lovely white flower to interplant with snowdrops, as you get a long season of brilliant whiteness in the same patch.

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  10. Thanks for the link love. I have to say something about snowdrops every year. A little birdie told me there’s going to be an article about Hitch Lyman and his snowdrop nursery in the NY Times in less than a week.

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