A number of the country’s celebrated visitor attractions – including Langley Park, near Montrose - are taking part in one of Scotland’s most popular outdoor festivals for the first time this year.
Blossoming across the country, from January 28, to March 12, the Scottish Snowdrop Festival features more than 50 properties, including 13 newly added for 2017, showing off spectacular swathes of snowdrops carpeting their grounds.
Other venues taking part in the festival around the region include Ecclesgreig Castle in St Cyrus, Inverkeilor’s Lawton House, House of Duns (NTS), Dunninald Castle, Montrose, and Barnhill Rock Garden in Dundee.
There are 300 varieties of Galanthus – to give the snowdrop its botanical name - and the versatility and hardiness of this classic winter flowering plant means it grows in a great range of locations.
The annual event, now in its 11th year, aims to encourage locals and tourists alike to enjoy the wonders of Scotland’s gardens during the snowdrop flowering period and to highlight the diversity of the country’s array of snowdrop collections.
For the first time this year, the festival is being organised by garden tourism organisation Discover Scottish Gardens, and supported by VisitScotland.
Research shows that one in three visitors to Scotland make a trip to a forest or woodland park during their stay, while 42 per cent visit a country park or garden.
Jim Clarkson, VisitScotland Regional Director, said: “Over the past decade the Scottish Snowdrop Festival has grown to become an annual highlight with the first snowdrops of the year a sign that spring is just around the corner.
“It’s fantastic that two new local venues will join this year’s line up as the festival provides a welcome boost for attractions during a traditionally quieter period of the year. I hope as many people as possible will get out and about to enjoy this great seasonal sight.”
“Many of the Scottish Snowdrop Festival locations are within the grounds of some of Scotland’s most historical buildings. Such buildings are a perfect fit for Scotland’s Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology. From World Heritage sites to ancient monuments, cultural traditions to our myths, stories and legends, the year-long programme will shine the spotlight on our greatest assets and icons, as well as our hidden gems.”
Catherine Erskine, Chair of Discover Scottish Gardens and founder of the Snowdrop Festival in Scotland, said: “We are very lucky in Scotland to have a fantastic climate for snowdrops, with many species thriving here and creating stunning displays. And this year, due to a mild winter, snowdrops are certainly popping their heads out earlier than they have for many years.”
Nearly half the participants are opening their gardens to raise money for national charity organisation Scotland’s Gardens.
For details of all the gardens and grounds taking part in the Scottish Snowdrop Festival 2017 this link