First Snowdrop of the Year – 2015

Galanthus 'Ding Dong'
Galanthus ‘Ding Dong’

I was thrilled to see that the sunshine has encouraged Galanthus ‘Ding Dong’ to open its flowers.  These are the first snowdrops to flower this year in the garden.  I bought the bulbs last year at the AGS Snowdrop Conference and planted them out in the border.  It was a bit of a risk given they weren’t cheap but I have been told by quite a few snowdrop growers that they don’t do very well in pots so I decided to throw caution to the wind and it has paid off – not only have they bloomed again but the clump has already bulked up which bodes well for the future.  The other two clumps of snowdrops I planted last year are showing signs of putting in an appearance so I am feeling more positive about my investment last January.


29 Comments Add yours

  1. djdfr says:

    That is early, no?

    1. Helen Johnstone says:

      Hi djd
      No, it is an early snowdrop – its name, I believe, Ding Dong is meant to represent that it flowers around Christmas

  2. rusty duck says:

    The new gardening season has begun. Bring it on.

    1. Helen Johnstone says:

      Hurrah indeed. I am trying to remind myself that we still have January/February to get through and not let myself be fooled by blue skies and the first blooms

  3. One of mine (G. Mrs Macnamara) has been out since the end of November and still going strong.
    This is a nice one Helen.
    I caught the snowdrop bug last spring and spent WAY too much on a few bulbs too. I toyed with the idea of keeping them in pots but opted for the ground as I read they would do best there and should bulk up better too.

    1. Helen Johnstone says:

      Hi Angie
      I bought a few last year too they seem to be coming up again but I have lost the label for one of them so no idea what it is!

  4. Pauline says:

    It’s lovely when the snowdrops start the gardening year once more. I’m sure your bulbs will be happier in the garden, Ding Dong is a lovely variety.

    1. Helen Johnstone says:

      hi Pauline
      I really like Ding Dong too, it has already started to clump up and I only bought it last spring

  5. hoehoegrow says:

    That’s it then … the new season has officially started and how exciting is that ! The fact that ‘Ding Dong’ is renowned for early flowering makes it well worth seeking out and buying – I’m on it !! None of my snowdrops are anywhere near flowering, but they are not named varieties and were in the garden when we moved in over 30 years ago, so perhaps get the prize for longevity ?
    Happy New Year helen.

    1. Helen Johnstone says:

      Hi HHG
      I like the ‘ordinary’ snowdrops best especially en masse but the variations are intriguing at this time of year

  6. Your snowdrops look so inviting as this time of year. I have been wanting to try them in the garden so maybe they can be the next addition!

    1. Helen Johnstone says:

      hi Le
      give them a go. You can buy pots of snowdrops at most garden centres in the next month or so.

  7. The shortest day is behind us and as the days gradually lengthen we can look forward to Spring,an9d your picture of Galanthus Ding Dong is a taster of what’s to come. Most of my snowdrops are still at the bud stage,but Galanthus woronowii has just started blooming…not usually this early in my garden.
    Incidently, I was given a good tip by a galanthophile friend…..he plants his special snowdrops in plastic aquatic baskets then sinks them in the garden. Avoids damaging the bulbs when working plus stops moles undermining them. The latter happened to my specials that were all planted in one area,some I never saw again .. I guess they fell deep into a mole run. I will be using baskets in the future!

    1. Helen Johnstone says:

      Hi Sue
      I heard that tip about aquatic baskets before and it seems like a good idea especially as it will protect the bulbs from being dug up accidentally. I might give it a go myself

  8. Wow! That’s an early bloomer alright! Thanks for sharing a bit of spring!

    1. Helen Johnstone says:

      At this time of year I am grateful for any form of flower or colour

  9. Anna says:

    Oh exciting Helen! My ‘Ding Dong’ (in a pot) is a day or so behind yours. Its name apparently was a play on words by Avon Bulbs who introduced and named it, inspired by the slogan used by a certain cosmetics company i.e.’Ding Dong, Avon’s Calling’. Like yours it’s a new to me bulb but mine was only planted in the autumn. I’m glad to read that your other snowdrop acquistions are thriving.

    1. Helen Johnstone says:

      Hi Anna
      Thanks for the background on the name, I do like those sorts of stories. I think the Blonde Inge you sent me is coming back up too. I have another one appearing but I have lost the label all I know is that I bought it from the AGS conference – I think it has some green so I will have to wait and see

  10. Yvonne Ryan says:

    How delicate and fresh!

  11. Gorgeous. As always.

  12. Chloris says:

    I love your Ding Dong. My Mrs. Macnamara has been going strong for ages now. Three Ships always comes out for Xmas too. I also have quite a few elwesii in bloom. I bought them last year from my local farm shop. They were labeled nivalis which they clearly aren’ t. I suspect they were dug up from somebody’ s garden. I am going to have to stop worrying about their names and just enjoy them.

    1. Helen Johnstone says:

      hi Chloris
      Mrs Mcnamara seems to be popular, I must check it out. I can’t tell the difference between the snowdrops yet unless they are labelled

  13. Cathy says:

    This is a testing time of year, Helen, for those of us with snowdrop specials, trying to resist the temptation to gently poke around in the soil around those important labels – will they, wont they? Unfortunately sometimes they wont and sometimes they don’t…. 😦

    1. Helen Johnstone says:

      hi Cathy
      I have 2 that were planted two years ago which I am about to give up on and others that I have lost the label to. I must find a better recording method.

    2. Cathy says:

      And I know by experience that if they do not reappear the next year then they are a gonner 😦

    3. Helen Johnstone says:

      I have at least two bought in 2013 that didn’t appear in 2014 and there is no sign of them now 😦

  14. They are such a personal favorite…I love the photo.

  15. Sarah says:

    What an appropriate name “Ding Dong” to announce the new year! I think you have to be optimistic to be a gardener. No matter how many horticultural disappointments I’ve had I always keep trying because of moments like your snowdrop Ding Dong! 🙂

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