Common Snowdrop

Common Snowdrop
Common Snowdrop. Galanthus nivalis.
Amaryllidaceae, the amaryllis family.

Plant: An underground bulb produces a basal cluster of fleshy, grasslike leaves and a single, nodding, white flower on a slender stalk. Typically many plants grow together producing a many-flowered clump.
Flowers: White, solitary, nodding, flowers 3/4"-1", with three outer "petals" and an inner "trumpet" or crown with distinctive green markings.
Leaves: Basal, linear, grasslike, about 6" long, slightly fleshy with a rounded tip.
Fruit: When produced, a capsule.
Blooming: March-April
Habitat: Open woodlands, clearings, old homesteads.

Comments: One of the very earliest of the spring flowers, snowdrops are so named because they are sometimes seen on the edges of melting snow patches. The flower is native to Europe, but widely cultivated worldwide, and naturalized in many areas. There are several closely related species native to Eurasia, and a large number of cultivars. Many of the species are endangered in the wild, and international trade in snowdrop bulbs is regulated. The genus, somewhat like orchids, has a following of enthusiasts, and unusual specimens are highly sought, hence the need for regulation. Reproduction is mostly by division of bulbs, although wild populations do produce seeds.

Where to find it: I have found a few clusters in the southeastern part of the main wooded area.