A single Scottish Elizabeth Harrison Snowdrop bulb sold for a record £725 on eBay yesterday, more than double of the previous record for a Green Tear which sold for £360 just last month.
Snowdrops are becoming increasingly valuable with many collectors of the species hiring security guards or getting tags to protect their rare species. There is also a significant increase in Snowdrop collectors or galanthopiles who are willing to part with hundreds of pounds for the flowers which first became popular in the mid 19th Century.
Joe Sharman, galanthopile and owner of Monksilver Nursery in Cambridge who also discovered the ‘Grumpy’ snowdrop – galanthus elwesii – said, “There are people who go around stealing snowdrops. I have to hire in security guards when I hold an event.”
The Scottish Elizabeth Harrison Snowdrop aka galanthus woronowii appeared as a seedling in a Scottish garden a few years ago and is so named after its owner. It is so rare that it has not been identified anywhere else.
Let’s hope the new buyer doesn’t have a cat or a dog; one chomp and it’s gone.