The wild daffodil or Lent Lily is the ancestor of most of the great and glorious daffodils and narcissi that we see in spring. It brings colour to swathes of woodland and grassland throughout England in the spring. This diminutive daffodil has delicate, paler outer petals that recurve very slightly while its trumpet is slimmer than most daffodils and slightly darker. The overall effect of a clump of these daffs is much more subtle and pretty than some of the more strident varieties.
If you would like to compare, have a look at the rest of our range of daffodils and narcissi.
Like most bulbs, Narcissus pseudonarcissus do not like sitting in really boggy conditions but will thrive in most soils with a bit of drainage and require virtually no maintenance; the normal caveat aside that you must not mow until their leaves have browned and died. . Please note the bulbs of this variety are much smaller than one might expect, and they may not all flower in their first spring. Both are normal.
The Narcissus pseudonarcissus naturalises better than any other daffodil so, in the spirit of playing to one's strength, plant these elegant, subtle daffodils where they can monopolise an area. Try planting them under trees, especially in an orchard, along a river bank, or in a meadow.
Once you have grown them, the Lent Lily looks truly lovely in a vase, but do not mix them with other flowers because they give off a slightly toxic substance. Before you put them into the vase, dip their cut stalks in warm water to remove and stop the goo that forms.
The Latin name for daffodil is narcissus and is thought to have been inspired by Narcissus, who was a figure in Greek mythology said to have fallen in love with his reflection in a pool of water. The nodding head of the daffodil is said to represent Narcissus bending down and gazing at his reflection. Known as the Lent or Easter lily due to its flowering time, this narcissus is in fact a member of the Amaryllidaceae family, which also includes snowdrops, and so is not a true lily at all. It is probably the daffodil that Wordsworth wrote about in his famous poem about Daffodils.