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Dwarf daffodils: flower bulb of the year

Dwarf daffodils are colourful heartwarming spring flowering bulbs. Dutch flower bulb traders have declared these cute little flower bulbs ‘The Flower Bulb of the Year’. So why not plant them in your garden? Their charming little flowers will give you that wonderful preview of spring early in the season!

Flowers

Dwarf daffodils are often referred to as mini-daffodils or short species daffodils. They remain short in stature and produce robust cheerful little flowers with roguish diminutive trumpets in the centre. You can buy them in single or double-flowering varieties, and some are even delightfully fragrant. They are available in white and various shades of yellow, salmon and orange; the trumpet can be the same or different colour than the petals.

A perennial plant

The cherry on the top? Dwarf daffodils are perennial flower bulbs. This means that they will produce flowers - and bring the feeling of spring into your garden - year after year. These bulbs also increase in number over the years because their bulbs are made up of scales. New scales are produced in the middle of the bulb every year while the old ones on the outside are no longer viable. Developing inside the new scales are next year’s leaves and flower.

Varieties

If you want these enchanting dwarf daffodils in your garden, don’t wait around. Plant them this autumn. Large clusters of dwarf daffodils provide beautiful accents of colour. Maybe the best places for them are in rock gardens or between the roots of trees and shrubs. You can choose from several varieties. That’s why we listed the most important dwarf daffodils here, including the double-flowering and scented ones.

Commonly available dwarf daffodil varieties:

  • N. triandrus ‘Hawera’
  • N. triandrus ‘Petrel’
  • N. cyclamineus ‘February Gold’
  • N. cyclamineus ‘Jack Snipe’
  • N. cyclamineus ‘Jetfire’
  • N. ‘Tête-à-tête'
  • N. tazetta ‘Minnow’
  • N. bulbocodium ‘Julia Jane’
  • N. bulbocodium ‘Golden Bells’
  • N. tazetta ‘Canaliculatis’
  • N. ‘Topolino’ (has mini trumpets)
  • N. ‘W.P. Milner’ (has mini trumpets)

 Double-flowering dwarf daffodils:

  • N. ‘Rip van Winkle’
  • N. ‘Pencrebar’
  • N. poeticus ‘Albus Plenus Odoratus’
  • N. odorus ‘Rugulosus Flore Pleno’

Delightfully scented dwarf daffodils

  • N. ‘Baby Moon’
  • N. ‘Bell Song’
  • N. ‘Hillstar’
  • N. ‘Martinette’
  • N. ‘Pipit’
  • N. ‘Pueblo’
  • N. ‘Quail’
  • N. ‘Sailboat’
  • N. ‘Sweetness’

Myth

The name of these plants - Narcissus - comes from ancient Greek mythology. As the story goes, a handsome young man named Narcissus discovered what he looked like by seeing his reflection in a pond. He immediately fell in love with himself. But his frustration was so great when he found that he couldn’t touch his mirror image that his body wasted away and disappeared. The only thing left was a yellow flower with a trumpet: the Narcissus.

Interesting little facts

  • Dwarf daffodils don’t grow very tall so they won’t get blown over easily. This is why they make good plants for pots and containers.
  • Daffodils are indigenous to regions in Western Europe. This means they can be found growing wild here in meadows, woods and rocky locations.
  • Daffodils symbolise a new beginning because their flowers announce the coming of a new season.
  • If you want to combine daffodils with other flowers, some good choices would be grape hyacinths or the larger blue hyacinths. This is because all of them will flower at the same time and their contrasting colours - yellow and purple - will make a beautiful display.
  • Some daffodils produce clusters of flowers on a single stem; two examples are Narcissus triandrus ‘Hawera’ and N. triandrus ‘Petrel’.

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