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GALANTHUS nivalis f. pleniflorus

Image of Galanthus nivalis f. pleniflorus



Botanical Name

GALANTHUS nivalis f. pleniflorus

Plant Common Name


General Description

Double-flowered forms of common snowdrop have been known in gardens for at least 300 years, and are often found naturalized both within and outside its native range of Spain to Ukraine. All are small perennial bulbs that produce a single flower in winter or early spring.

Nodding from a slender arching stem ("pedicel") atop an erect ankle-high scape, the white, honey-scented flower has numerous petal-like segments in two whorls. The three to six outer segments are spoon-shaped. They surround a rosette of 6 or more small, wedge-shaped inner segments, which are often malformed. The inner segments typically have notched tips with a broad green v-shaped "mustache." The flower attaches at its base to a small, green, narrowly cylindrical ovary. Two slender, leaf-like spathes flank the pedicel. The bulb multiplies to produce a multi-flowered clump. The narrowly lance-shaped leaves are grayish-green. The foliage emerges before the flowers, develops to full length during and after bloom, and neatly fades away in spring. Numerous double-flowered selections abound, all derived from the antique cultivar 'Flore Pleno.'

Common snowdrops couldn’t be easier or more rewarding to grow. Plant the bulbs in fall at a depth of two to three times their height in moist, well-drained soil with plenty of humus. They are best under deciduous trees where they receive full sun while in bloom but partial shade later on. They require at least 2 months of chill in winter to grow and flower well. Do not disturb the bulbs, but rather allow them to form large clumps. Double forms are mostly sterile, producing no fertile seed. Plant snowdrops in masses in lawns, under deciduous trees and shrubs, or in rock gardens, mixed borders, or containers. The fragrant flowers are lovely when cut and displayed in bud vases. All parts of this plant contain compounds that make them unpalatable to herbivores.


  • AHS Heat Zone

    8 - 1

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    3 - 8

  • Sunset Zone

    1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 17

  • Plant Type

    Bulb or Corm or Tuber

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun, Partial Shade

  • Height

    3"-7" / 7.6cm - 17.8cm

  • Width

    2"-4" / 5.1cm - 10.2cm

  • Bloom Time

    Early Spring, Winter, Late Winter

  • Native To

    Europe, Eastern Europe, Southern Europe, Turkey

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam, Sand

  • Growth Rate


  • Water Requirements

    Average Water

  • Habit


  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest


  • Flower Color

    White, Green

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Green, Gray Green

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Green, Gray Green

  • Fragrant Flowers


  • Fragrant Fruit


  • Fragrant Foliage


  • Bark or Stem Fragrant


  • Flower Petal Number


  • Repeat Bloomer


  • Showy Fruit


  • Edible Fruit


  • Showy Foliage


  • Foliage Texture


  • Foliage Sheen


  • Evergreen


  • Showy Bark


Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Alpine, Container, Cutflower, Foundation, Mixed Border, Rock Garden / Wall

  • Sharp or Has Thorns


  • Invasive


  • Self-Sowing