Classification, origin and description
Common name: Snowdrop
Typology: Perennial, bulbous
Propagation: division, seed
Etymology: Galanthus, from the Greek gala (milk) and anthos (flower).
They are modest flowers but particularly known and appreciated because they announce the end of winter. Some species, with larger flowers (such as Galanthus elwesii) than those of our native G. nivalis, indigenous to Italy and Europe, and some varieties, bloom later prolong flowering until the end of March.
Snowdrop Galanthus nivalis L. (photo David Paloch)
How it is grown
The ideal place is in the middle of the greenery or at the foot of the bushes letting them grow like spontaneous flowers. The leaves often appear after the flower; they should be cut only after they are yellowed. The Galathus multiply dividing the bulbs, in the summer during the period of vegetative rest, and replanting them either immediately or at the beginning of October; several years can be left at home. They can also be multiplied by sowing, alpero, as soon as the seeds are ripe, but will bloom after 3 years.
Snowdrops Galanthus elwesii Hook
Species and varieties
Galathus nivalis L. - Species native to Europe, in Italy it grows in the Alps, Apennines and in Sicily. It is the common snowdrop, with flowers about 15 cm high, which appear from January to February. Some varieties have been selected, with larger flowers and double corollas.
Galathus byzantinus Baker - Species native to south-eastern Europe. It has 25-30 cm tall, green and white flowers, which appear in February.
Galathus elwesii Hook - Originating from Asia Minor, it is 30 cm tall. It has large white flowers that appear in February-March.
Diseases, pests and adversities
There are no particular parasites or diseases, except for gray mold, which spreads through the bulbs (to be eliminated immediately).