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How to plant snowdrops

Find out how to increase your stock of snowdrops by diving and replanting bulbs 'in the green'.

A table displaying which months are best to sow, plant and harvest.
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
To do
To do

Do not To do in January

Do To do in February

Do To do in March

Do not To do in April

Do not To do in May

Do not To do in June

Do not To do in July

Do not To do in August

Do not To do in September

Do not To do in October

Do not To do in November

Do not To do in December

Snowdrops clump up well, and from time to time they can be dug up and divided to transplant elsewhere, helping you increase your stock. Digging up the bulbs while the snowdrops are in leaf and even in flower, is known as planting ‘in the green’. This method is thought to yield better results than planting bare snowdrop bulbs in autumn, as the bulbs are very small and can dry out easily.

Small clumps of transplanted snowdrops planted in the green will quickly develop into larger clumps, eventually providing you with carpets of beautiful white snowdrops every spring. Find out how to do it, below.

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You Will Need

  • Snowdrops 'in the green'
  • Garden fork or spade

Step 1

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Use a garden fork or spade to lift clumps of snowdrops. Dig deeply all round the clump, before levering it out in order to get down to the bulbs.

Step 2

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Divide the snowdrop clumps by tearing them apart. This can be done when they are in leaf or even in flower. To help the plants conserve energy, pick off flowerheads so they don’t waste energy on seed production.

Step 3

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Use a hand trowel or fork to replant small clumps of six to eight bulbs. Make the hole 10cm – 15cm deep and place the bulbs at the base of the hole. Fill around the bulbs with soil taken from the hole, ensuring some of the leaf is above the surface.

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Don’t remove the leaves from your snowdrop bulbs. Leave them to die down naturally as this will allow next year’s flower buds to form inside.

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