Have you seen the snowdrops flourishing beneath the fig tree in the Galilee Gardens?
Our thanks go to Mike, for continuing to look after our garden so that we can enjoy these delights!
Did you know?
- Snowdrops contain a compound called galanthamine which is used in modern pharmaceuticals to manage Alzheimer’s disease and is also used to relieve traumatic injuries to the nervous system.
- A lectin (carbohydrate-binding protein) in common snowdrops called GNA is being studied for its potential use against HIV.
- The common snowdrop belongs to the same plant family (Amaryllidaceae) as another spring favourite, daffodils.
- Snowdrop seeds are dispersed by ants. The seeds are surrounded by an oil-rich structure called an elaiosome, which attracts the ants. The ants carry them into their nests, eat the elaiosome and discard the seeds, helping to distribute them.
- The scientific name Galanthus nivalis means ‘milk flower of the snow’, which refers to both the common snowdrop’s flower colour and early flowering time.
- They are closely associated with the Christian festival of Candlemas on 2nd February, 40 days after Christmas, which celebrates the presentation of the child Jesus in the temple and the purification of his mother, Mary (and is found in Luke 2:22-40). Snowdrops came to symbolise hope, purity and Jesus as the light of the world. This is why many churchyards dating back to the Middle Ages contain snowdrops at this time of year.
As with last year, we will be sharing our Lent Groups this year with St Frideswide’s, following the Anglican Oxford Diocese ‘Come and See’ resources, based on the Beatitudes.
Our regular Thursday Home Group will become a Lent Small Group, and other groups will be available too.
Watch this space for more information!