Snowdrops. Did you know?
The fruits of our labour are all around us at the moment as the tiny snowdrops bulbs we planted last autumn are now appearing. They give you a serious ‘bang’ for your ‘bucks‘ and look amazing naturalised with anemones and crocus bulbs.
Almost everyone knows this happy message of the fragile white snowdrop.
Amazing but true!
Snowdrops contain their own anti-freeze and were harvested during the First World War to make anti-freeze for tanks. The young sprouts of the snowdrop can produce a little bit of heat to melt the snow in their surroundings.
There is an active ingredient in the snowdrop bulbs called Galantamine, which is used in the treatment of early Alzheimer’s and vascular dementia. Galantamine was first used in Eastern Europe in the 1950s to treat memory problems but it was not until 2010that it became widely used in the UK when the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) authorised its use.
The short story ‘The Snowdrop’ by Hans Christian Anderson follows the fate of a snowdrop from a bulb striving towards the light to picked flower placed in a book of poetry
Soldiers were so enchanted by snowdrops that they brought them back from the Crimean War battlefields to plant in their gardens. (1853-1856)
There are 20 species of Snowdrops, such as the Galanthus nivalis, the Crimean snowdrop Galanthus plicatus and giant ones Galanthus elwesii (23 cm tall).
Do not forget to smell it; such a natural treasure does wonders for person’s emotional and psychological health.