Snowdrops in a Forest
Spring flowers to admire
I already wrote about the best winter flowers in my previous hub. It was about those flowers which you can cherish in your garden. Later in the net I found that some people are so found of snowdrops that every year visit forests to see snowdrops in nature. I was lucky because I also had a chance to see these tiny flowers in nature.
Mane people associate snowdrops with a new life and new hope. In Russia there is a legend telling that an old Granny Winter together with Frost and Wind wanted to stop coming of Spring the Beauty. But the Spring had a defender - a Snowdrop who asked the Sun for a help. The Sun warmed up the earth and opened the way for a Spring the Beauty to come. Nice legend which is absolutely trustworthy because blossoming of snowdrops really separate winter from spring.
We made a trip to find snowdrops in the end of March. It was a time when the snow has already melted away and nature was waking up after winter. No leaves yet, and it seemed absolutely unreal to see anything like flowers in a forest.
The place we were looking for is in Ukraine. Its address would not tell you anything unless you live here. I am not hiding it and if you come to Ukraine I would gladly accompany you there, (note, absolutely FREE :-) This forest is in Cherkassy region. It is known probably to many and many people in Ukraine for its historic background. It is like Sherwood Forest known for Robin Hood in UK. This is an oak forest with many hornbeams. The forest is located near the village and many local people try to make some extra cash in spring collecting wild garlic and selling it to city folks striving for organic food and natural vitamins.
Collecting of snowdrops and wild garlic is protected by law in Ukraine and is prohibited but forest is big, and people were doing this for many and many years. Besides people in villages do not often have too much money and do not care much about any law (until police catches and fines them).
Snowdrops usually appear before wild garlic in this region so our chances to find snowdrops on the 30th of March were almost close to nil because we went too late.
It is amazing to be in a forest at this time of the year. It is not a time of green leaves and forest is far from been poetic. Bare trees and every little sprout that comes out of last year fallen leaves seem to be so gentle and unprotected. The whole forest is still empty. Even birds did not come home yet from warm Africa where they stayed all winter. The only plant which is seen everywhere is wild garlic. It easily comes through a thick coat of oak leaves and enjoys every single and rare sunbeam. I would never find any snowdrop if it were not my father who grew up at this place and knew it. Snowdrops grew in an isolated place which is like a small canyon. One of the slopes of this canyon is a favorite place of snowdrops because it gives them a chance to get more sunshine, then any other place in a forest.
Those snowdrops which we have seen grew up mostly near oak trunks under a thick cover of leaves. The flowers were so fascinating that I could not but buy several bulbs in a shop later on and planted them in the backyard of the house.
The bulbs were planted in a shadow on the depth of 5-10 cm. If the depth will be small then the new bulbs will grow directly from this parental bulb. If you plant it deeper the new bulb will come out of the stem. Distance between the bubs should be around 5 cm. Snowdrops can grow at the same place for many years, but if you need to move them to another place you can do it anytime, even at a time of blossoming. The period of their blossoming is short but even this short time brings you much joy and hope.
Good luck to anyone who loves flowers and enjoys every moment of taking care of them.