12 Things to Know about Daffodils

Wow your friends with your deep daffodil knowledge.

Photo: Art Meripol

Study up on some rare daffodil factoids that will leave your friends gaping over knowledge of these lovable yellow and white flowers.

  1. A daffodil and Narcissus are the same flower. Narcissus is actually the Latin or botanical name for the daffodil, which is the common name.
  2. Not all yellow daffodils are jonquils. Jonquils are specific types of narcissus that have smaller, fragrant, clustered blooms. In short, they are the daintier flowers.
  3. All Narcissus have the same flower structure. Each bloom has a perianth (six outer petal-like pieces) that surrounds a central corona (the trumpet like thing at the center) and most reach to be 1 to 1½ feet tall.
  4. There are between 40 and 200 different daffodil species with over 25,000 hybrids registered divided between a 13 part daffodil classification system.
  5. Daffodils are some of the easiest flowers to grow and naturally regenerate year after year.
  6. Daffodils are one of the first flowers to pop up every year. The further South you go, the sooner you will see them. Sometimes you'll see them in early February!
  7. Unlike most other bulbs, squirrels and other pests don't eat daffodil bulbs because of poisonous crystals in the bulbs and leaves.
  8. Don't cut daffodil leaves immediately. The plant needs them to rebuild its bulb for the next year. Wait until they turn yellow to cut them.
  9. Low maintenance and cold hardy, daffodils grow as far north as the Canadian border, but they don't grow in Florida. Daffodils need a cold frost for flower bud intiation.
  10. Daffodil enthusiasts, aka, the passionate daffodil gardeners call themselves "the narcissus people" and are considered the sci-fi nerds of the flower world. There are four national daffodil judging "schools" where one can begin the intensive process of becoming an accredited daffodil judge.
  11. The American Daffodil Society was formed in 1954. Several state and regional specific daffodil societies formed afterwards but many have shuttered recently. Which is why you should find and support your local daffodil chapter.
  12. The daffodil is not the state flower for any of the 50 US states.

See what the Grumpy Gardener thinks about the daffodil. He knows everything there is to know about these flowers.

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