Visiting a snowdrop garden is always a guaranteed way to lift your spirits as these tiny white and green flowers start to appear in the dark days of winter. The added bonus is the chance to spend a little time outdoors in the fresh air of the Essex countryside.
While there are a number of gardens around Essex where the public can go and enjoy these displays, the National Garden Scheme specifically has five gardens which open for the charity at this time of year, as part of the NGS Snowdrop Festival. The festival helps contribute to the £3million that is raised every year around the country for nursing and caring charities. Some of these gardens have some specific open days in the next few weeks but at others you can visit as part of their open By Arrangement scheme, when you can book, in advance, either a private or a group visit. So here is a taste of what to expect in Essex this month.
Dragons is a three-quarter-acre private garden in Boyton Cross near Chelmsford (Sat Nav CM1 4LS) that is gardened with a passion. This passion includes snowdrops and at the opening on Wednesday, February 12 (from midday until 3pm) visitors will be able to experience the beauty of a carefully designed winter garden which features hellebores as well as an impressively wide range of snowdrop cultivars including the giant snowdrops. Many, some quite rare, are available to buy on the day. If that date doesn’t suit and you can gather a group of at least 10 people, you can contact the owner on mandmdragons@ tiscali.co.uk to arrange a private visit from February to October.
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