Places to see snowdrops

Snowdrops

Seeing a swathe of snowdrops is one way to brighten the winter months. Despite the cold, these hardy little flowers can be found thriving in pastures, woods, ditches and orchards everywhere. After a long winter their brilliant white petals and green leaves are a welcome sight, signalling the growth of new life. Discover the best places to see these pretty white flowers near you.

Flowering between January and March, snowdrops are one of the first signs of life in gardens after the long winter months.

Our garden experts take great care of these delicate little blooms, and now they’re passing on some of their favourite facts and top tips so you can create your own mini carpets of snowdrops at home. 

In this article:

Visiting this spring 

Our gardens, parks and countryside locations are open. Cafés are offering a takeaway service and some outdoor seating is available at cafés in England only. Some shops are open in England and Wales but remain closed in Northern Ireland. All houses are currently closed. The safety of our staff, volunteers and visitors remains our priority. To avoid disappointment please book in advance, especially at busier times such as weekends and bank holidays. Please check the property webpage before you visit and follow government guidance.

Places to see snowdrops
Snowdrops at Stourhead, Wiltshire

South West 

Snowdrops often start appearing across the South West at the turn of the year – a welcome sign that spring is not far away. If you fancy taking in a few snowy drifts, then here are a few of the best places to find them near you.

 

A double petaled snowdrop

Homes for bees

Bees love snowdrops. They're a vital source of nectar early in the year when not many other plants are in flower. By planting snowdrops, you'll be building on the eco-system this vital species calls home.

How to grow snowdrops in your garden

Top tips from our gardeners

Common snowdrops are hardy and fairly easy to grow, so it’s not too difficult to create your own mini display at home. Here Jack Lindfield, Head Gardener at Ickworth gives some top tips for growing them:

  1. There are so many beautiful species of snowdrop, but if you're hoping to create an impressive swathe you can’t beat Galanthus nivalis. It's the most common species because it self-seeds and spreads very quickly, which means you’ll get to enjoy your snowy white display sooner.

  2. Always buy pots of snowdrops ‘in the green’ – this means once they’ve finished flowering but while the leaves are still intact. This could be any time from mid-January to early March, so keep an eye out at your local garden centre or National Trust plant shop.

  3. Once you get your flowers home, plant them out as soon as possible. The best location is somewhere with partial shade such as under a tree, and with moist but well-drained soil. It’s worth adding some leafmould or garden compost to the soil to ensure you’re giving the plants plenty of nutrients.

  4. Plant them at the same depth as they were previously grown - you can often see this where the leaf stalks change from white to green. If you can’t see the level clearly, then just plant the snowdrops around four inches deep, and if you bought multiple clumps then space them about six inches apart.

  5. Water the plants in, and then you can leave them alone – the foliage will die back and become food for the bulb, ready for next year’s display. Within a couple of years each clump will have grown to fill the gaps you left.

  6. As the years go by, you can help your snowdrops to spread by lifting and dividing any large clumps. Carefully dig up the clump and prize it apart with your hands into smaller chunks. Discard any diseased or dead bulbs, and then re-plant each new group six inches apart. Over time you’ll end up with a beautiful carpet of white flowers every spring.