I was (unusually) at a loose end earlier today, awaiting a delayed delivery, so decided to tackle one of my inside winter jobs, updating my snowdrop list and map. My kind and generous friend Anna of Green Tapestry had shared more of her snowdrops with me over the summer, when she split some of her dormant bulbs. I had potted them immediately but temporarily into little pots and they had been sitting in the greenhouse minding their own business since then, just having an occasional drink (hic!). Not having pencilled the additions onto my 2017 list when they arrived, I nipped down to the greenhouse to remind myself, and … !!! You could have blown me down with the proverbial feather!
Not satisfied with this unanticipated excitement, I was checking where I had planted new in-the-green bulbs from way back in snowdrop season as I seemed to have missed one from my map, when Flash! Bang! Alacazam! (that’s a line from one of our newest barbershop numbers,’Orange Coloured Sky’, a great song to sing)
I knew Faringon Double (another gift from Anna, to replace a failed bulb of my own) was one of the earlier snowdrops, often appearing in December – but this is the second of November for heaven’s sake! Peter Gatehouse, I find, when I check one of my books, often flowers from mid November although I hadn’t picked up previously that he was an early visitor. The snowdrop excitement here and in many blogging friends’ gardens does not usually begin to build till late December at the earliest, except for those with autumn flowering varieties, and having found evidence of new shoots for a few other snowdrops when I was looking for my unmapped variety I can see me having a daily prod around my snowdrop border much earlier this season. There is still has plenty of leaf cover from geraniums,heuchera nd hellebores though, so any prodding will be hindered until leaf fall (or leaf cut, in the case of hellebores).
A special thank you to Anna for helping to feed my appetite for the little white gorgeousnesses with her generous giving – sadly her collection is much bigger than mine so it is rare that I have any different snowdrops to offer her in return. And now I am off to deal with delayed delivery, those three new clematis I mentioned…