Daffodil (Flower)

Narcissus ( Narcissus ). It is a genus of the Amaryllidaceae family originating in the Mediterranean basin and Europe . It comprises numerous bulbous species, most with spring flowering, although there are some species that flower in the fall . Narcissus is the common Spanish name for Narcissus.

Most of its species are native to the Mediterranean region, but a few species are found throughout Central Asia and China . The number of cultivated forms has increased greatly, with new variations in cultivation nurseries practically every year.


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  • 1 Etymology
  • 2 Description
  • 3 Horticultural classification
  • 4 Crop
    • 1 Normal culture
    • 2 Forced cultivation
  • 5 Conservation and multiplication
  • 6 Pests and diseases
    • 1 Nematodes
    • 2 Narcissus Fly
    • 3 Mosquito Bulbs
    • 4 Mites
    • 5 Narcissus Galeruca
    • 6 aphids
    • 7 Mice
    • 8 Snails and slugs
    • 9 Base rot
    • 10 Bulb Storage Rot
    • 11 Mosaic or Striped Narcissus
    • 12 Gray mold or Botrytis
    • 13 Heterosporiosis
    • 14 Socarrina or Singed
    • 15 Rust
    • 16 Septoria
  • 7 Source


Named after the young narcissist from Greek mythology Narkissos son of the river god Cephissus and the nymph Leiriope ; that was distinguished by its beauty.

  • German : Narzisse
  • Spanish : Narciso
  • French : Narcisse
  • English : Daffodil, jonquils
  • Italian : Narcissus
  • Catalan : Narcís
  • Portuguese and Galician : Narciso

The name derives from the Greek word narkào (= narcotic) and refers to the pungent and intoxicating smell of the flowers of some species (some argue that the word derives from the Persian word نرگس and is pronounced Nargis, indicating that this plant is intoxicating ).

Daffodils in North America are called jonquils, but properly speaking this name should only be applied to the species Narcissus jonquilla (L.) Pourr. ex Nyman 1882 (junquillos) and to similar taxa that have leaves like reeds.


Daffodils are plants bulbous, basal leaves and escaped. The flowers , solitary or in groups, have six petaloid tepals. The stamens, numbering six, are inserted into the perigonium tube . The fruits are trilobed capsules that generally contain numerous casings.

Horticultural classification

Although known since ancient times by horticulturists , it was from the second half of the 19th century when the selection and mass production of cultivars and hybrids began ; the number of those currently produced is practically innumerable.

In horticulture they are classified into 11 groups that are described in the following table. In some publications, group 12 is usually added, which includes Daffodils that cannot belong to any of the other groups.

Group Name Description Flowering

Trumpet daffodils

Trumpet daffodils Large and solitary flower. The crown or trumpet is as long or longer than the outer tepal or petals. Spring

Large cup daffodils

Large cup daffodils Of origin cultivated with a large and solitary flower. The cup measures more than a third, but equal to or less than the length of the perianth. Spring

Small cup daffodils

Small cup daffodils Of origin cultivated with a large and solitary flower. The crown shorter than a third of the length of the petals. Spring

Daffodils with double flower

Daffodils with double flower Of cultivated origin of double flower with many petals. Petals and crown are not clearly distinguishable from each other. On each stem one or more flowers appear, sometimes aromatic. Spring

Daffodils triandrus

Daffodils triandrus Of cultivated origin from N. triandrus, whose characteristics they possess. They provide two to six small-stemmed flowers, the petals of which are often turned back. First half of spring

Daffodils cyclamineus

Daffodils cyclamineus They have very marked characteristics of N. cyclamineus. Each stem has a flower with clearly turned back petals and a generally long crown. Spring

Daffodils jonquilla

Daffodils jonquilla They have obvious characteristics of N. jonquilla. the stems have one to five aromatic flowers, with flat petals and small tops turned outward. Spring

Daffodils tazetta

Daffodils tazetta Of cultivated origin with predominant characteristics of N. tazetta. Those with a small crown can have up to 20 flowers per stem, while those with a long crown only have three or four. Its petals are flat with often fragrant flowers. In the spring

Daffodils poeticus

Daffodils poeticus With easily recognizable characteristics of N. poeticus. stems with a single fragrant flower with flat white petals. Small, orange cup, open and frequently with a red border . Late spring or early summer

Species and hybrids

Species and hybrids All of which grow wild. Spring

Daffodils with a split crown

Daffodils with a split crown Cup split in two at least a third of its length. Stems with single flower. Spring


Normal culture

  • They are planted in the fall and bloom in early spring . Don’t plant them too late.
  • They prefer sunny places, but they also endure semi-shade.
  • The bulbs are for sale in two sizes. Large bulbs should bury about 8-12 cm., While small bulbs will only bury 6-8 cm.

Place the bulbs with the tip facing up or even with the apex slightly protruding from the pot substrate . In the garden , it is usual to plant small spots of 15 or 20 units per m2.

  • Its cultivation is quite simple. The most important thing is that it has a well-drained soil with a certain richness in organic matter. Excess water would cause the bulbs to rot.
  • Withstands the cold but avoids the extreme. If you plant in pots, keep them away from heavy frost in a dark, cool and dry place. When the stem rises above the ground, remove it for the sun , but at night it must be stored again if the temperatures are very low.
  • If necessary, glue the stem with bamboo sticks or sticks so that it does not tip.

Forced cultivation

  • Daffodils can be grown indoors by doing what is called “forced cultivation”. It is one of the easiest bulbous to force.
  • First of all, you should purchase varieties suitable for forcing and larger, not small, sizes.
  • Plant in a peat pot without burying the bulbs too much. Place the pot inside the house, from the month of November in Spain and at a temperature of about 10 ºC, trying to ensure that the pot receives as much light as possible during the day.
  • Once the flower buds have been properly developed, that is to say, they show some very developed and very compact buds, you should place them in the warmest place of the house with abundant light.
  • A temperature between 16 and 20 ºC will be enough for the Daffodils to fully open their flowers after a few weeks.
  • When it is in bloom it will be convenient to apply some liquid fertilizer and once the flowers wilt, they are cut, fertilized and continue watering without excesses. During the next months the plant will offer the beautiful deep green color of its leaves in the house.
  • When the warmer months arrive, suppress watering completely and wait for the plant to dry completely. After a week remove the bulbs and store in a cool place and in the dark until planting which will be done the following November (preferably) for a new forcing.
  • To naturalize, the following are very appropriate:
    • Golden Harvest, variety of large flowers.
    • Daffodil varieties “Junquillo”
    • You “Geranium”
    • You “Triandrus”
    • You “Cyclaminus”
    • You “Tazetta”

Conservation and multiplication

Daffodils easily naturalize in the garden, unlike Tulip and Hyacinth . Over the years a colony is forming. (Naturalizing them consists of leaving them buried so that they bloom again next year).

Another option is to remove them for replanting next fall . The procedure would be as follows: When the flowers wilt, cut the flower stem and allow the leaves to dry completely. If you need that space to put another plant, take out the bulbs with a soil ball, that is, glued to the roots and take it somewhere where the leaves can wilt.

The mother bulbs are separated and the others are implanted as they are. Subsequently they are classified by size and stored on trays in a cool, dry and dark place.

Plagues and diseases


Ditylenchus dipsaci ) A tiny 1-2 millimeter worm that attacks bulbs and onions of different species and that, under favorable conditions, can cause more or less important damage.

The attacked plants have orange, yellowish and twisted shoots. Diseased plants should be uprooted completely and with soil. Disinfect the soil before planting.

Daffodil fly

Merodon ecuestris ) Daffodil Fly larvae measure 15-20 millimeters and gnaw on the bulb. There are one or maximum two larvae per bulb. The attacked bulbs vegetate poorly and can die if they are small.

Older plants defend themselves by forming secondary roots, but the leaves turn yellow and the plant weakens. This fly attacks Narcissus, Amaryllis , Hyacinth, Tulips, Gladioli and other bulbous and tuberous plants. The bulbs can be disinfected by bathing them for 3 hours in hot water at 40-50ºC, leaving them to dry afterwards.

Bulb mosquito

Daffodils and other bulbs can be attacked by smaller worms of 6-8 millimeters called Eumerus spp. It has 2 generations. Females lay 10-30 eggs near or at the base of the Narcissus bulbs and more frequently on those of Jacinto, Lirios and Azucenas .

They gnaw at the roots and get between the scales of the bulb. The bulbs can be disinfected by bathing them for 3 hours in hot water at 40-50ºC, leaving them to dry afterwards.


The Mites live in the scales of the bulb, digging furrows, then invade the leaves that get to rot in their lower part, with the consequent weakness and death of the plants.

Narcissus Galeruca

Tarsonemus laticeps ) The beetle Exosoma lusitanica , 7-10 millimeters long and yellow in color, attacks the flowers of various plants, including those of the Narcissus.

Adults damage flowers and larvae damage bulbs. They are distinguished from fly larvae in that they do not have legs. If necessary, use an insecticide against adults.


The Carnation aphid (Rhopalosiphun dianthi) also attacks Daffodils, as well as other flowering plants.


Snails and slugs

Base rot

Fusarium spp ) Leaf yellowing, paralysis of bud development and basal rot and bulbs. Fusarium fungus . The infection occurs mainly in bulbs that have been injured in cultivation operations.

Bulb Storage Rot

Penicillium spp ) Apply fungicide after harvest, immersing the bulbs in the suspension for 15 minutes.

Mosaic or Striped Narcissus

This disease is caused by a virus and is recognized by the appearance of a pale green mottling along the leaves, and the flower obtained is of very low quality. Control the aphids that are the transmitters from one plant to another.

Gray mold or Botrytis

Botrytis cynerea ) Elongated dark gray spots on the leaves and brown on the flowers, followed by rot of the entire plant, which is covered with gray mold . Destroy infected plants. Fungicides .


Disease caused by Heterosporium gracile , which also attacks Lilies and is manifested on the leaves by discolored elongated spots.

Treatment with copper oxychloride and zineb or others is recommended to prevent the disease .

Socarrina or Singed

The leaves of diseased plants have spots or areas of reddish-brown color with yellowing of the tissues that surround them. The cause is the Stagonospora cortisii fungus , which can cause significant damage in some coastal areas with a very humid environment.

The infection begins at the tip of the bulb and spreads to the leaves at the time of sprouting. Discard bulbs that show signs of attacking the apex.


Leaves with yellowish spots, dotted with elongated dark red pustules due to the Puccinia fungus . Fungicide treatments are moderately effective, although they can contribute to maintaining the development of the disease if applied from its inception. Zineb, Daconil , etc.


The leaves attacked by the Septoria fungus have long brownish-yellow spots covered in a white mold ; then they wilt or dry, depending on the environmental conditions. It can be combatted with copper oxychloride , captan , zineb


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