Snowdrops are popping up across the South West, bringing that first sign that spring isn’t a too-distant hope and will be returning soon enough. In many gardens that the National Trust care for, swathes of snowdrops can be seen; here’s a guide to the top spots perfect for exploring followed by warming treats in the cafés.
Did you know that 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, so look out for snowdrops for sale in the shops as you explore, so you can take a bit of inspiration from your National Trust day out and help nature in the process.
Kinever Valley, North Devon
This hidden wooded valley in North Devon is perfect for a snowdrop walk. There’s a route which begins in the village of Morthoe and leads through the countryside, taking in this snowdrop hotspot and ending up at a secret little cove by the sea.
Image: Killerton Chapel National Trust by Fi Hailstone.
Killerton’s historic landscape garden and estate is filled with pockets of cheery snowdrops. You can find them throughout the garden, near the chapel, in the parkland in front of the house, in Dane’s Wood and Ashclyst Forest. There are handy walking leaflets on arrival to help you find your way around. On Saturday 7 and Sunday 8 March, 11am-4pm, you can help to add to the display of snowdrops in the chapel grounds by planting memory snowdrops (£1 donation per bunch).
The Garden in the Wood at Knightshayes is a great place to see dainty snowdrops, as well as early flowering camellias and rhododendron. This part of the garden has been described as ‘like a sweet shop for any plant lover’ - a description which holds true at any time of year.
Images: Greenway National Trust by James Dobson.