Have you been impressed with the carpets of Snowdrops seen in gardens open for the Scottish Snowdrop Festival? As the flowers fade, now is the time to lift and divide the bulbs.

Use a border fork and lift established clumps with ease. You will then need to shake off excess soil and pull the clump apart. Notice how dense the bulbs are together, as each bulb grows it expands and adjacent bulbs push up above others. Gradually the clump will contain many non-flowering bulbs, some even leafless such is the way they have been supressed within the clump. Once separated each individual will have a chance to grow and develop.

Replant in a random fashion; singly, double up and handfuls of bulbs together, to a depth of three times their size. This gives a more naturalistic appearance when flowering commences in January 2021. Here, a timely reminder, at the same time as planting in cultivated ground, weed the area. Naturalising through established vegetation is just a case of following the random pattern again. Planting “in the green” as this is called leads to successful establishment. Much preferable to sourcing dry bulbs in autumn. And incidentally much easier to plant as there is vegetation to hold onto when lowering the bulb into the planting hole. Snowdrops do not tolerate drying out so plant as you lift clumps leaving the bulb out of the ground for the shortest time possible. When considering planting places, be aware these bulbs will not tolerate a dry summer soil, moisture is the key to a prolific flowering the following winter.