Friday, 17 February 2012

The worlds most expensive snowdrop: a sound investment

Yesterday saw many gardeners and galanthophiles alike with mouths agape at the news that the Snowdrop 'Elizabeth Harrison' had sold on ebay for the princely sum of £725 for a single bulb.  At the time the bidder was completely unknown and of course this brought with it the usual whispers, outrage, and general shock that someone could justify the expense.  But today is another day and the story has developed somewhat.

In a statement it was confirmed that "On Thursday 16 February at 14:40 after a bidding frenzy of over 30 bidders Thompson & Morgan, the Ipswich based mail order plant and seed company, acquired the world’s most expensive snowdrop Galanthus woronowii ‘Elizabeth Harrison’ for £725."  On reflection, this makes much more economic sense and is more acceptable when compared with the notion that the bulb was winging its way to some private collection never to be seen again.  After all, as with many other rare and unusual plants with potential to sell in large numbers, this pretty little gem of a plant will now go in to propagation until it becomes available for general sale.  Plus, this so called bidding frenzy has created quite a nice bit of spin to get the orders rolling in!


  1. Not looking like a proper snowdrop tho is it?

  2. Oddly, I would have rather seen it go to a collector. Mass production decreases the value, and over time it simply becomes yet another Galanthus that everyone has! I guess this is what separates the quirky obsessed connoisseurs from joe gardener!

  3. I guess this is what separates the connoisseur from the average joe gardener. I thrive to find the rare and unusual. In a matter of time this supposedly unique Galanthus will be one amongst a plethora of others available in, well, Thompson and Morgan's catalogues.

  4. As long as I live I will never understand snowdrop collectors.

  5. Same here Kaveh, I'm mystified. I suppose you have to have the collector gene to get what makes them tick.

  6. Good points there. I guess it would be equally disastrous though for the snowdrop to disappear altogether? It's a possibility that this could happen in a private collection.

    Like you, Robert I quite prefer the traditional but I do have a soft spot for Glanthus 'Grumpy'.


  7. I'd never heard of snowdrop collectors until I read this blog. Takes all sorts! It's a pretty snowdrop, but how much?!!!

  8. The resultant bulbs will no doubt be more valuable because they paid so much. If this had sold for £30 then teher would have been no coverage. T&M have had well more than £725 of free advertising before the bulbs even make it to market.


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