Inspired by reading an article about gardening expert Carol Klein, in the magazine Somerset Life, I decided to stop sitting about at home all day and drove south to East Lambrook, which is thought to be a good example of cottage garden style as planted by Margery Fish just before the second world war.
The garden was quite a lot smaller than I expected and must be quite lovely when everything is flowering in the spring and summer. This picture is of the shop’s display of the many different varieties of snowdrop planted in the garden and available to buy there. I couldn’t actually get them all in the picture.
It had turned into the most beautifully sunny day but it was so windy that the many, many varieties of hellebore and snowdrop that I photographed didn’t come out very well, as they were blowing around so much and I’d forgotten to put my camera on the idiot proof ‘running man’ setting. I’m not sure I completely understand ‘galanthophilia’ or snowdrop mania, though, as the differences between the different kinds are pretty subtle. For me it was enough to notice that some of them were pretty giant – about 10″ tall and with quite substantial foliage. I think when they get to that size, they cease being lovely snowdrops as there’s not much of the ‘drop’ about them anymore. The variations amongst the hellebores struck me far more because of the different colours and number of petals, and I’ve now taken to looking much more closely at my own – one of which you can see here which lives in my front garden.
I’d missed the snowdrops’ main flowering, which must have been a couple of weeks ago but it was still an impressive show. I came away with just one purchase, although I could have made more: a type of hellebore that I haven’t yet got. So pretty.
This post makes it sounds like I had a very solidly horticultural day. In fact I didn’t. I am omitting the story of the wild goose chase across the county in search of an old fashioned, leather dog collar and lead for You Know Who. Another sign of the times, when the little village pet shops have all closed and one has to go to a massive superstore. Who knew?