The English Garden

White Gold

In the woodland glades of Avon Bulbs’ nursery in Somerset, free-range snowdrops run amok in their shady pleasure ground, unwittingly spawning new generations of future gems as they promiscuously hybridise with one another. In the nursery itself, a vast array of meticulously labelled cultivars in pots line a procession of coldframes, destined for national and international snowdrop fairs where they’ll tempt visiting galanthophiles.

A February visit here reveals a spectacular collection of some 250 coveted galanthus species and cultivars. Chris Ireland-Jones, owner of Avon Bulbs, bought the Bath-based nursery over 30 years ago, relocating it to an eight-acre former farm

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