AC125 - 54:Aspect County 28/01/2009 11:14 Page 10
PLACES TO VISIT
Winter blooms at Wakehurst Place Thousands of dainty snowdrops are bursting into life at Wakehurst Place, Kew’s country estate in Sussex. Over the coming weeks a dazzling array of 100,000 of the flowers will provide a snowy white welcome for visitors at Wakehurst. The much-loved plant is a real tonic in January and February, its delicate flowers adding a splash of brightness on even the greyest winter day. The snowdrops – scientific name Galanthus from the Greek words ‘gala’ meaning milk and ‘anthos’ meaning flower – are situated near the Wakehurst visitor centre. In the water gardens several thousand more snowdrops will be joined by huge drifts of Crocus tomasinnianus, with its purple goblet flowers opening for warm winter sunshine.They are situated close to a display of the International Garden Photographer of the Year competition
winners, on show at Wakehurst until February 22. A carpet of 15,000 cyclamen in shades of pink and white is another eyecatching feature of the garden at this time of year. The planting of cyclamen, also near the visitor centre, is believed to be the largest of its kind in the country. Other seasonal highlights include the winter garden, close to the 16th century Wakehurst Mansion, which is at its best with striking foliage, coloured stems, architectural effect and surprising seasonal flowers. Chris Clennett, Wakehurst’s Garden Manager, said: “Snowdrops and cyclamen are always a welcome sight in winter – and hopefully a sign that spring is not too far away. “They continue to bloom in even the hardest of frosts and, despite looking so delicate, are actually surprisingly hardy.” To find out more about Wakehurst place you can visit at Ardingly, nr Haywards Heath, West Sussex or call them on 01444 894066.
February 2009 issue.