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Thomas Wilkinson2

Hi all,

I wanted to plant some snowdrops. I will be planting them in pots, any advice on how to best do this and when to best do it? How big a pot will they need and I assume they are ok to leave outside all winter? what should I expect to see as they grow? when will they start? 



don't buy dry bulbs now, they don't like being dried. Get them  in bulk with leaves (in the green) after flowering next year or in flower at the GCs in February



I agree with nut. Never had any success from bulbs, ones with leaves always come back.

Hi Thomas

I don't know anything about whether you should buy bulbs or not as these knowledgable people above clearly do but I used to have snowdrops in my old garden - in the ground.

I suspect it depends on the region but I live in Sussex and mine used to start in Jan or at the latest early February. A tiny little  green stump/shoot would appear which would get taller and taller and the leaves appear by kind of "peeling away" from the stump until suddenly a flower appears!

If you are going to keep them in the pot year after year I did see on TV once  that sometimes you have to divide them (like every few years) by waiting until they have stopped flowering and digging up a clump and splitting it into littler clumps and planting them elsewhere (or giving away or whatever)but I'm not sure if this applies when they are in a pot.  I know that if you don't divide daffodils they stop flowering but I'm not sure if its the same with snowdrops or if you just divide them as a way to propagate.

Also, if it is of interest, they were  very tough - my daughter stomps all over the stumps EVERY year (usually because it has snowed ) and they always survive!


you're right Phasmid, if they're kept in pots and never split up they will stop flowering eventually. They're better in the ground for a long life but OK in pots to admire for a season. 


I got a few hundred bulbs recently from eurobulbs. I believe they transplant them not long before sending them. The bulbs do not have any leaves on. Does this mean that they are going to fail if planted in the ground?

Thomas Wilkinson2

Thanks for the tips folks! much appreciated.

I have a few snowdrop bulbs knocking about tht someone gave me a while a go. If I wanted them for certain, better off going to a GC then and getting an established plant. I guess i'll put the bulbs in too just to see...  been enjoying using this forum so far! Thank you to all you lovely fellow gardeners! 


greenlove, if they haven't dried out they should be OK. Have heard that later in the season for moving is fine, they don't need to be green. Not drying out is the important bit.

Woodgreen wonderboy

If you have dry bulbs and you fear they will not do much why not plant them up in pots for the first year and then plant out "in the green" next spring. Watering your pots, but not waterlogging, is essential.


I have so many that I always manage to put a fork through a clump when I am tidying up the borders. I just push some back into the ground, spaced a couple of inches apart, a sprinkle of fertiliser, and all the left overs get spread in a nother part of the garden. This way there are thousands , all starting from a small clump that was here originally. Just don't let them dry out. If I lift any by accident or otherwise at any time of year, I get them straight back into some soil somewhere.

 Sometimes I will shove a few into pots.  Rooted  cuttings of buddlejas I give away often have a few secret bulbs hidden in the pot for a surprise in spring.(Fidgets ghost)

Thomas Wilkinson2

ah they are so lovely fidget! hoping I get a bit of luck!

It never hurts to try, I got a pack half price in about November last year, and they all came up. Only 1 flowered - but they should all have a go in the spring.

gardenning granny

I too bought bulbs end of season (november) and planted up, five to a small pot.  Kept in a cold greenhouse but watered after planting they all flowered and were planted out whilst in flower, so that I had them where the spaces were.  The single ones self seed, but the double ones need to be split after 2 or 3 years. 

grown this way you can see where those from previous years are and fill in the gaps where you want them, also you won't haver to wait until next year to buy in the green, thereby missing next springs flowering.  Pots in flower in the garden centre are always expensive, and probably the same bulbs you could be planting up for yourself!



Lovely drifts fidget. Am now wanting more in my garden 

Woodgreen wonderboy

I grew some fritilarias in pots last winter so that I could plant out in the gaps between those already in the garden. Still got the pleasure of the flowers without damaging those planted earlier. I might try some snowdrop bulbs this year, same technique, even tho' I always plant in the green.

Bulbs are best, BUT only if you get them in early summer soon after they have gone dormant. "In the green" you always damage some roots and they take a year or so to recover, unless they are a clump from a neighbour and you just transplant intact, or you take very great care separating and water in as you plant. Bulbs that have dried in the garden centre are very hit and miss. Just buy as soon as they appear and hope for the best, or buy from a snowdrop freak, who hopefully will do the right thing. Pots are OK for a start but get them in the garden as soon as you can for the next season. They rot very easily in poorly drained pots.

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