It is that time of the year again for gardeners in Nanaimo.

The snowdrops are out, the crocus have started showing their pretty colours and the primroses are making a statement.
We would like to believe that summer is right around the corner on Vancouver Island.
It may not be, but fortunately none of these flowers mind a late snow fall.
Here are three early favourites to look for.

Snowdrops are often only 3 inches tall. They have double white, droopy, bell-shaped blooms, but the inner tepals are shorter than the outer three tepals. Like other springtime bulb plants, their foliage dies back by summer. The “snow” in the name is apt because they are among the earliest bloomers in February or March. Snowdrops are sometimes spotted pushing up through a layer of snow. For the showiest results, plant groups of 25 bulbs in the fall, each bulb submerged 2 to 3 inches into the ground.

Crocus technically a “corm” (not a bulb), some crocus can bloom almost as early as snowdrops. Crocus appear in a variety of colors and sizes depending on the cultivar. There’s virtually no care needed for crocus. They don’t need much water other than rain and they multiply on their own.

The biggest problem is bulbs and flowers being eaten by chipmunks, deer, rabbits, and squirrels. Other animals, such as skunks, may dig the bulbs out of the ground while searching for insects. There are liquid deterrents that can be sprayed on the leaves and granular deterrents you can scatter to prevent nibbling. You can also buy wire cages or cover the bulbs with chicken wire (under the soil) to protect the bulbs in the ground when you plant them. If you find your plants are constantly being harmed, avoid using bone meal, which can attract animals. Instead, try interplanting your crocuses with daffodils, which animals dislike.

Primroses with more than 400 species to choose from, these cheery spring plants come in a rainbow of colors. As you might imagine, the flowers’ shapes, colors, and sizes vary. Generally, it’s one of the earliest perennials to flower. Whether you treat it as a trusty perennial here in Nanaimo or an annual plant to brighten up any corner of your garden, primrose delivers gorgeous color with its bloom. Looking for a yard to plant your own flowers? Contact us at Pemberton Holmes Nanaimo.