Monday, February 28, 2011

Snowdrops, Crocus, Iris and Primulas

Having only few days of winter left, I've almost forgotten how beautiful snow can be, because in downtown Vancouver, snow is such a rare seeing. The winter has returned this weekend and some of the spring blossoms, scented or not, with vivid or pale colors,  look just gorgeous covered by snow, don't you think?


How could somebody resist not to take photos to an amazing carpet of Snowdrops / Galanthus flowers covered by snow?! They are perennial plants in Amaryllis family which are growing in clusters from bulbs and now they are in full bloom.


Although they are native to Europe, this herbaceous plants are naturalised in all Canada, some of them like - Common Snowdrops aka Galanthus Nivalis (nivalis means "on the snow") being most spread all over the world. I love their white flowers with greenish-yellow markings on the surface. Over the years many cultivars appeared which differ in size, shape or the period of flowering, single -flowered or double-flowered, with pure white, yellow or green flowers, but the common snowdrops remain the most widespread. Is said that their flowers contain an active substance called galantamine very helpful in Alzheimer's disease. (I'll keep that in mind!)






The Iris Reticulata plants (from the Iridaceae family, Hermodactylus genus) have vivid and showy flowers with blue-violet and yellow tones from a little rainbow, which indeed seems to be painted by a Goddess (Iris was the Greek Goddess of the Rainbow).



From the same Iris family, but classified's in the Crocus Genus, the "Crocus" Vernus Albiflorus with white, yellow or lilac or mauve flowers can be seen in the most of spring garden landscapes or in the meadows on the foothills.











The flowers from Primrose family are perennials native to Northern Hemisphere, which blooming especially in spring, with purple, yellow, res, pink or white flowers. They are considered the first flowers which bloom in spring (the Latin "primus" meaning "first") and I like how "Primula Juliae Wanda" flowers look.



The Common Heather (Calluna Vulgaris from the Ericaceae family, Erica Genus) is also a very popular plant in the Vancouver's parks and public gardens. Many cultivars produce a multitude of white, pink or purple flowers each year and are used in decorative beds.


I consider that all these spring  flowers surrounded  by the pure snow make an interesting mix of color. Which ones do you like more?

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