Posted by: lensweb | November 16, 2016

Snowdrop Planting at Forbes Hole #Get Better With Nature


Saturday 12 November 10.00am-12 noon

LENS with the Friends of Forbes Hole -Snowdrop Planting and some scrub clearance


Galanthus nivalis is admired for its delicate beauty, millions of plants are sold each year by the horticultural trade. It is one of the most popular of all cultivated bulbous plants and is widely enjoyed as an outdoor, early spring flower. Although often thought of as a British native wild flower, or to have been brought to the British Isles by the Romans, it is now thought that it was probably introduced much later, perhaps around the early sixteenth century, it is widely naturalised around the UK.

Bulbs are collected on a small scale from privately-owned estates in the UK for sale to wholesalers for the horticultural market. G. nivalis is a low growing perennial to 15cm, with narrow, grey-green leaves and solitary, nodding, fragrant white flowers, the inner segments marked with green at the tip, we know it as the common snowdrop

Snowdrops like to grow in well-drained humus-rich, moist soil that does not dry out in summer so it should do well along the ride at Forbes Hole where in recent years, ivy and bramble have taken over the ground . Even though the weather forecast was dire, an intrepid crew set out to plant 100 bulbs.  Battle commenced to clear our own patch.  Water drops trickled off the golden leaves of maple but the rain held off. At 9C and a gentle southerly breeze, we sometimes felt it was too warm for work!  It did take a good hour to find good soil for planting but the end result was satisfying.Bryan finished with a final flourish of bulbs in the mown grass bank at the entrance.

Did you know?

Snowdrop lectin is an effective insecticide, and can be used against insect pests.

Common snowdrop contains an alkaloid, galanthamine, which has been approved for use in the management of Alzheimer’s disease in a number of countries.

Phenological studies of the changes in plant life-cycles over time, monitor and record the first flowering dates of some common plants.  Recent signs of change include a shift in the average flowering date of the common snowdrop. In the 1950s the flowers commonly opened around the end of February, but over the decades flowers have gradually appeared earlier, such that since the 1990s the flowers have opened in January, one year they flowered in December outside St Lawrence Church.

We are looking forward to seeing our snowdrop flowers in the New Year.

Marion Bryce 16 November 2016





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