Discover the Hampshire's snowdrop spots
PUBLISHED: 12:36 19 February 2010 | UPDATED: 16:44 20 February 2013
These early months herald the arrival of some of our best-loved flowers, with clusters of tiny bright snowdrops, winter aconites and daffodils providing a heart-lifting experience.
These early months herald the arrival of some of our best-loved flowers, with clusters of tiny bright snowdrops, winter aconites and daffodils providing a heart-lifting experience. The countys National Trust properties must be your first stop for the best displays.
Swathes of snowdrop Golanthus nivalis cover the grassy lawns of this ancient priory, set on the famous River Test. Drifts of bright yellow winter aconites, and later, daffodils, produce a bright mass of colour underneath Mottisfonts huge plane trees.
February 7, Mottisfont is running a guided snowdrop walk. Booking is essential on 01794 344020 and costs 3.50. During half term, families can enjoy a self-guided snowdrop trail, on February 13 21. The gardens are also open for early viewings between February 6 28, Saturday and Sunday 11am-4pm, and every day between February 15 21, 11am-4pm.
Mottisfont Abbey, Mottisfont, Romsey, SO51 0LP,
tel. 01794 340757
One of the first sights to meet visitors in early spring is a pretty ribbon of pearly white colour from the snowdrop trails that wind their way from the estates car park to the Walled Garden. Further displays can be found in the Wild Garden, mingling with yellow-petalled winter aconites.
The gardens are open for special snowdrop viewings from
February 6 March 7, Saturdays and Sundays, 11am-5pm. For the first time, the gardens are also open every day over half term, when a childrens trail and hands-on activities are also on offer, February 13 21, (11am-5pm).
The Vyne, Sherborne St John, Basingstoke RG24 9HL,
tel. 01256 883858.
Hintons previous owner, Ralph Dutton, designed the East Lawn of the garden around the tiny parish church in the grounds. He knew that, even in colder months, the congregation was likely to gather on the grass after the Sunday service, so he planted the lawn with fragrant winter flowers such as daphnes, which have a zingy lime scent and tiny pink flowers. The church border is hedged with sweet box Sarococcas, which fills the air with a heady honey scent. Snowdrops, winter aconites and crocuses inject bright darts of jewel-like colour.
The gardens open for early spring viewings on February 27 and 28, and March 6 and 7, 11am-4pm.
Hinton Ampner, Bramdean, nr Alresford SO24 0LA,
tel. 01962 771305