This section is from the book "Handbook Of Hardy Trees, Shrubs, And Herbaceous Plants", by W. Botting Hemsley. Also available from Amazon: Handbook of hardy trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants.
The Snowdrop is too well known to call for detailed description. As a genus it is distinguished from Leucoium by having the three inner segments of the perianth shorter than the outer, and by the finely-pointed anthers opening at the top only. The name is from milk, and flower.
1. G. nivalis (fig. 235). Snowdrop. - The only species of this genus in general cultivation. It is found throughout Central and Southern Europe to the Caucasus. In England it is supposed to be naturalized only.
Fig. 235. Galanthus nivalis. (1/4 nat. size.)
G. Imperati or plicatus is a later-flowering larger species, from the South of Europe.