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The best National Trust properties to find snowdrops in Suffolk and Cambridgeshire





Beautiful drifts of white snowdrops are one of the great pleasures of winter. Despite the cold, they can be found thriving in pastures, woods, gardens and orchards in January and February. Their white petals and green leaves brighten the winter months and signal warmer weather is on the horizon.

But how much do you know about these dainty little flowers? There are more than 2,500 varieties of snowdrop and its Greek name ‘Galanthus’, translates as the ‘milk flower’. They first became fashionable in the Victorian era, but no one knows for sure when they were first introduced to the UK.

They’re also incredibly clever, as they contain a natural antifreeze. When temperatures reach 10C and above, the outer petals open-up revealing the nectar inside. When the temperature drops, the petals close. This is perfect for bumblebees, which come out of hibernation when the temperature rises above 10C and rely on these early flowers as a vital nectar source.

A carpet of snowdrops at Anglesey Abbey
A carpet of snowdrops at Anglesey Abbey

National Trust properties in the region offer the public some of the best spots to enjoy a snowdrop walk. Here are some of them:

Ickworth Estate, Horringer

Snowdrop Walk, Friday, February 16

Take a crisp winter walk through Ickworth to discover carpets of snowdrops along Geraldine’s walk, as well as The Albana Walk and Trim Trail. There are two main varieties you can see - Galanthus nivalis, which is the most common of all the snowdrops, flowering from late-January and growing to around 7-15cm tall, and Galanthus elwesii, a larger variety that flowers slightly later, and originate from Turkey. The snowdrops are complemented by the golden glow of aconites scattered throughout.

Snowdrops at Ickworth
Snowdrops at Ickworth

Join the Head Gardener for a guided walk to find out more about Ickworth’s snowdrop collection. Pre-booking recommended. Guided tour is £7. Normal admission applies.

Wimpole Estate, Cambridgeshire

Wimpole boasts a large collection of snowdrops too, along with aconites throughout the Pleasure Grounds. Normal admission applies.

Peckover House and Garden, Wisbech

Throughout February and into early March, Peckover House will be opening the garden gates for people to enjoy a beautiful snowdrop display.

Open at weekends from February 3. Normal admission applies.

Anglesey Abbey, Lode, Cambridgeshire

Pre-book The Specialist Collection Tours, Monday–Friday and every Sunday from January 29 to February 29

Anglesey Abbey has one of the finest snowdrop collections in the country, with 400 varieties of these delicate white flowers, many of which are rare. Take in their beauty amongst a collection of classical statues and wander through the Winter Garden, also in its prime at this time of year.

Snowdrop, Galanthus "Spindlestone Surprise", in The Winter Walk at Anglesey Abbey Gardens in Cambridgeshire
Snowdrop, Galanthus "Spindlestone Surprise", in The Winter Walk at Anglesey Abbey Gardens in Cambridgeshire

You can also enjoy a closer look at the specialist snowdrop collection by joining one of the National Trust’s garden team on a pre-booked tour. Here you’ll see some rather special varieties, including Galanthus nivalis ‘Anglesey Abbey’ which is a snowdrop that was discovered at and named after Anglesey Abbey. Its green v-shape mark on the tips of the inner petals are what gives this single snowdrop its recognisable features and it often flowers around the middle of January.

Tours are free, but a £5 donation would be gratefully received, which will go towards the care of the gardens. Normal admission applies.

Oxburgh Estate, King’s Lynn

Snowdrop Guided Tours every Sunday & Monday in February

Late winter and early spring at Oxburgh Estate sees thousands of snowdrops and winter aconites on display in the Wilderness, My Lady’s Wood and on the North Terrace. The plants are allowed to self-seed, creating a beautiful, natural scene.

Snowdrops in the historic parkland at Oxburgh Estate
Snowdrops in the historic parkland at Oxburgh Estate

To find out more about Oxburgh’s snowdrop collection, book your place on a snowdrop tour. Suggested donation of £5. Normal admission applies.

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Fullers Mill, West Stow

Pop along to Fullers Mill’s Snowdrop Days at West Stow this February.

More than 100 varieties can be seen and local nurseries and experts will be on the seven-acre site with plants for sale.

Snowdrop Days take place every Wednesday and Friday between 11am and 3pm.

Fullers Mill is owned and managed by Perennial, the only UK charity looking after people in horticulture and their families.