Early blooms bring promise of spring

Local venues are preparing to welcome visitors for this year's Scottish Snowdrop Festival.
Local venues are preparing to welcome visitors for this year's Scottish Snowdrop Festival.

Despite the dismal weather, the first promise of spring is showing through and properties across the area are preparing for Scotland’s most popular seasonal festivals.

Gardens, woodlands and estates have opened up to the public as part of this year’s Scottish Snowdrop Festival, which this year runs until March 13.

Nationally, nearly 60 properties will be showing off spectacular swathes of snowdrops carpeting their grounds. Venues range from popular attractions to privately-owned estates which are not normally open to the public, so visitors not only get the chance to marvel at magnificent seasonal displays, they can also explore some of Scotland’s most beautiful garden and woodland settings as well as hidden architectural gems which they might not otherwise have the opportunity to see.

As in previous years, Pitmuies Gardens at Guthrie, near Forfar and House of Dun will be at the forefront of local participating properties. Set against the backdrop of an 18th century house, Pitmuies Gardens boast a wide variety of shrubs, carpets of crocus and a mass of snowdrops while the splendid setting of the William Adam-designed House of Dun, three miles outside Montrose, offers the opportunity to enjoy the blooms in its beautiful Victorian Gardens.

Other venues taking part in the festival in the region are Lawton House, Inverkeilor, by Arbroath, and Kinblethmont, also near Arbroath.

There are 300 varieties of snowdrop its versatility and hardiness means it grows in a great range of locations.

Jim Clarkson, VisitScotland Regional Director, said: “Snowdrops are loved by everyone - it’s always wonderfully cheering to see them appearing and knowing that spring can’t be too far behind – so I hope that as many people as possible will get out and about to enjoy this great seasonal sight around Scotland’s most stunning gardens and estates.”

Further details of all the gardens and grounds taking part in the event, are available at www.visitscotland.com/ snowdrop where opening times are also listed. Entry fees will be donated to charity.