Galanthus x “Kildare” – Snowdrop
Nodding white flowers with delicate green markings, over strap-like leaves, in mid-winter.
This is a clump-forming bulb that thrives in well-drained woodland situations. It rises above ground in late June and flowers during July before the leaves have fully developed. The leaves will wither and disappear in early summer.
The identification of this variety as “Kildare” is mine alone, and I am not a serious Galanthophile. However, it is much too pretty to be straightforward G. nivalis. “Kildare” is probably a hybrid of G. nivalis and G. plicatus; the former coming from a swathe of Europe and the Balkans from Spain to Georgia, and the later from a more restricted area around the Black Sea from Ukraine to Turkey. G. nivalis has now become naturalised throughout Europe and North America.
Soil / Aspect:
Galanthus require humus rich soil with good drainage, and shade – ideally dappled shade. It will withstand hard frosts, but should not be in soil that is baked dry in summer.
The main issue with snow drops, as with so many spring bulbs is remembering to mark where they are so that you do not disturb them with your activities during the rest of the year! They are a very tolerant plant, bulking up steadily, that can be lifted and the clumps pulled apart by hand every few years to relieve congestion and propagate.