Narcissus Minnow
Narcissus Minnow

I was recently reading The Morville Hours by Katherine Swift and smiled when I read her describe her dislike of mass plantings of daffodils, “lining the roads and roundabouts in stiff phalanxes of an unvarying shade of yellow”.  I couldn’t agree more but like Katherine I have discovered in recent years the variety of Narcissus that are available and my attitude has changed.

Narcissus Tete a Tete
Narcissus Tete a Tete

I am growing particularly fond of the miniature daffodils such as Tete a Tete, Minnow  and Hawera.  I have planted large groups of the later two varieties in the new Woodland Border and am really pleased with the result.

When I moved here I inherited several clumps of the large trumpet daffodils.  These are exactly the variety that I dislike and which gets used a lot in municipal plantings en masse.  I have moved quite a few to the back of the garden but one has popped up  in the middle of my drifts of Narcissus Hawera and looks quite ridiculous.  Talk about David and Goliath!  I shall be moving it shortly.

Whilst the yellow Narcissus are jolly and bright and really brighten up a dull and grey Easter weekend, like this one, I prefer the lighter colours such as the ones above.  I don’t know what variety these are as I have had them for a few years but they sure have a wonderful scent.

*I am reliably informed by Dave The Anxious Gardener and Libby that the above Narcissus is Thalia

Narcissus Cheerfulness
Narcissus Cheerfulness

But the strongest scent comes from Narcissus Cheerfulness which is my absolute favourite.  I adore these and add more each year.

Narcissus Pheasants' Eye
Narcissus Pheasants Eye

I’m also quite partial to Narcissus Pheasants Eye which has a very pretty red ring around the trumpet.

I prefer to plant my Narcissus in their varieties as opposed to mixing them up but unlike the roadside plantings I never plant them in serried rows, instead I scatter the bulbs on the ground and plant them where they fall and this seems to work well.

Next Autumn I want to get some native narcissus, the Lent Lily, Narcissus lobularis (psuedonarcissus) which I am planning to add to the shaded woodland garden and also the front garden for which a plan is finally emerging in my head.

I hope you enjoyed my tour of the Narcissus in my garden and Happy Easter

*Update: thanks to Dave and Libby for pointing out that the top picture was not of Narcissus Thalia as I first thought.  On checking I had actually labelled them, so unlike me, and they are in fact Narcissus Minnow.