Spring is in sight. A seasonal update from Chelsea Physic Garden

There are hundreds of spots around the Garden brimming with Galanthus (Snowdrops), Narcissus (Daffodils), Leucojum (Snowflakes) and other early spring flowers, but can you tell a Lapwing from a John Gray?

  • Galanthus nivalis ‘Ophelia’ has strong green markings at the base of the inner tepals, with light green markings at the bottom of the outer tepals. It is a ‘double’ and often has two flowers per scape (flowering stalk).
  • Galanthus plicatus ‘Diggory’ has distinctive, rounded outer segments, incurved giving flat-bottomed mature flowers with large light-green marks almost to the base, and grows to 16cm.
  • Galanthus ‘Lady Beatrix Stanley’ features a tightly-packed rose and double white flowers. The wide inner tepals are said to resemble petticoats.
  • Galanthus plicatus ‘Wendy’s Gold’ grows to 20cm and has broad, grey-green leaves. The white flowers have a yellow-green ovary, with a long yellow-green mark also apparent on the inner tepals.

All four of these snowdrops are clustered around the Ginkgo biloba trees by the carts near the Embankment Gate.

  • Galanthus gracilis ‘Highdown’ can be found in two spots near the Cool Fernery and has a long, thin, lime-green ovary, with markings on the top and bottom of the inner tepals and long, thin leaves.
  • Galanthus elwesii has a dark green, bulbous ovary and large, broad, glaucous leaves, with marks on the top and bottom of the outside of inner tepals. It can be found in World Woodland Garden, near the border of the lower lawn.
  • Galantamine, a compound used in the treatment of Alzheimer's disease, was first isolated in the bulbs and flowers of Galanthus woronowii, which has broad, semi-erect, bright green leaves and a horseshoe-shaped mark on the inner tepals.

Complete your visit to the Garden with a visit to our cosy cafe.