Festival marks first signs of spring at Glamis

Activities will be led by head gardener Des Cotton and his team.Activities will be led by head gardener Des Cotton and his team.
Activities will be led by head gardener Des Cotton and his team.
Renowned for its historic gardens, Glamis Castle is inviting members of the public to plant snowdrops in the castle grounds as part of Discover Scottish Gardens’ Scottish Snowdrop Festival 2023.

Seen as one of the most visible signs that spring is almost here, snowdrops have been a striking sight in the gardens of Glamis Castle for over a century. To celebrate their universal appeal, the Angus castle’s gardening team are hosting special planting sessions over the next two weekends.

Led by head gardener Des Cotton and his gardening team, members of the public will be invited to plant snowdrops on the Nature Trail in the castle grounds, where visitors will be able to admire the flowers en masse.

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Participants will be re-planting Galanthis Nivalis and Galanthis Nivalis ‘Flore Pleno’, more commonly known as the double snowdrop. Each have been admired in the grounds of Glamis since Victorian times.

Des said: “Snowdrop bulbs tend to dry out really easily, so rather than planting them in the autumn as a bulb, we lift them when they’re in the green. We have a few large 100-year-old drifts of snowdrops tucked away in the woods that we lift clumps from to transfer to the public spaces in the gardens. The snowdrops benefit quite well from being lifted and divided, and it’s nice to be able to spread them further in the gardens.”

Historically an annual event, the gardening team are looking forward to welcoming horticulture enthusiasts to be part of the planting. Des also expects to see some familiar faces on the Nature Trail. He added:

“We’ve been doing this long enough that we have people who have developed a connection with the gardens and return every year to plant more snowdrops. People like to come back and find their snowdrops that they planted.”

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The gardening team will be on site during the snowdrop planting sessions in the Nature Trail behind the Italian Garden at Glamis Castle from 10am-3pm on Saturday, February 18, Sunday, February 19; Saturday, February 25 and Sunday, February 26. The Pavilion Gift Shop will also be selling potted snowdrops for those wishing to take some flowers home to plant.

For more information go to https://www.glamis-castle.co.uk/event/snowdrop-festival/