Daffodils


My Favorite Spring Flowers

Every spring I look forward to seeing my daffodils bloom.  They are the first legitimate sign of spring for me, even though the crocuses bloom before they do and the primroses have been out since January.  Even if the rain continues relentlessly and the snow still layers the ground, the daffodils resiliently stand up to any lingering effects of winter.  Unlike crocuses,which bloom and shrivel quickly, the daffodils last for weeks.  So far the ones in my yard have been in bloom for over 5 weeks.

I have them everywhere.  When I take walks in my garden they greet me with their colorful personalities and make me feel positive and optimistic.  When I drive up to my little bungalow and I see them strewn about my flower beds, it feels like they’re welcoming me home.  Their bright, almost fluorescent yellow, lights up the gloomy days and helps me to endure another couple months of harsh Oregon winter.

Traditionally daffodils are often planted in patches and in combination with other spring flowers like primroses and hyacinths.  Originally I planted most of mine in groups of three, and since then they’ve multiplied and now cover larger areas. I like to use them for borders as well.

 

After my daffodils spring up I wait with eager anticipation for the tulips to make their appearance about 5 – 6 weeks later.  Tulips come in a multitude of incredible varieties, but you can also find some very interesting varieties of narcissus.  I’ve only just begun to introduce other varieties to my garden.  Last year I discovered the Rip Van Winkle daffodils.  They are so sweet that I couldn’t resist planting them in several areas of my garden.  I buy them in pots and plant them, whereas the regular narcissus I buy in bags of 50 at Jerry’s in the fall.

I remember my Dad first reading this poem to us when we were kids.  One of his favorite poets was William Wordsworth. This poem is probably one of Wordsworth’s most recognized.

 

Daffodils

I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o’er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.

Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the milky way,
They stretched in never-ending line
Along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.

The waves beside them danced; but they
Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:
A poet could not but be gay,
In such a jocund company:
I gazed–and gazed–but little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought:

For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.

William Wordsworth

 

Below are a few good websites with information on daffodils along with some photos:

www.colorblends.com/Daffodil/   Check out this website to see the spectacular varieties of daffodils out there.  It’s astonishing that there are over 50 species of daffodils and over 13,000 hybrid varieties!

www.daffodilusa.org/daffodils/div.html    Large photos and guide for growing and cultivation.  I saw the Marabou daffodil in a vase on someone’s desk last year and couldn’t believe it was real!  It was so perfect that I thought it was plastic.  I have to have this daffodil and will set out to find the bulbs this year to have in my garden.

www.drakealgar.com/daffodil-flowers-p-309.html

www.houseplantsguru.com/history-of-daffodils-and-narcissi

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