Craig, near Langholm, is opening as part of Scotland’s Gardens Scheme this weekend – at a time when the swathes of pretty snowdrops are expected to be at their peak.
Dumfries district organiser Sarah Landale explained that the main part of the Craig house was built in 1840 and it is probable that a few snowdrops were first planted here soon after, in Victorian times.
As the snowdrop family is very fertile and promiscuous and cross breeds easily visitors will see several unique cross breeds at Craig, including two or three poculiform type with six white petals all the same size.
Sarah said: “Over the last 30 years, the snowdrops have been split and spread further afield through the garden and policies round the house in the spring and what you see today is very much an ongoing project – on the other hand the river bank walk, in more recent times, has been managed as an open woodland, where the snowdrop finds an environment close to its natural home where it prospers as nature intended – damp, cool and well drained, even if prone to flooding.”
The first snowdrops come out at Craig on about January 1 and usually peak in the latter half of February, with odd varieties still flowering in early April.
Sunday’s snowdrop walk, which is open from 12 noon to 4 pm, will have two distinct parts – the house and garden/policies area, which is about 90 per cent nurture, and the riverside walk which is about 90 nature.
Teas, soup and home baking provided by the WI will be served at Bentpath Village Hall, approximately one mile up the valley, from 1 pm to 4 pm.