Until Sun Feb 10
© Chelsea Physic Garden
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Time Out says
Fri Oct 5 2012
Crocuses may be more colourful, daffodils more dazzling, but snowdrops hold a special place in the hearts of gardeners for being the first spring bulbs to appear. Hardy harbingers of the season to come, these pure little blooms dare to put on a show when temperatures keep most plants underground – and most flower fans curled up on the sofa.
Ahead of its official spring opening, the ever-entrancing Chelsea Physic Garden, London's oldest botanic garden, unlocks its doors for nine days this month to showcase its collection of snowdrops (Latin name Galanthus, meaning 'milk flower') at their peak.
Guided tours will highlight the huge variety of snowdrops out there – from the common snowdrop, G nivalis, to the large flowered, honey-scented G Sam Arnott – some so prized among galanthophiles that a single bulb can change hands for hundreds of pounds.
You can also book yourself on to themed workshops including a bracing day of snowdrop painting in the garden led by botanical artist Gillian Barlow (February 7 10am-4pm; £105) and an introduction to plant remedies with medical herbalist Lara Bean (February 9 10am-4pm; £95). Specialist nurseries will be selling snowdrops and other winter-flowering plants. And if you need to thaw out after your snowdrop safari, the garden's Tangerine Dream Café is open for brunch, lunch, tea or a drop of something stronger.
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