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Daffodils: Lost Forever?

From America’s Expert Source for Heirloom Flower Bulbs
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Page 4 of Daffodils: Lost?
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MARTHA WASHINGTON, 1927

Though this dramatic poetaz has just two or three florets per stem, they’re so gosh darn BIG — up to 3 inches across — that you’ll only need a few stems to fill a vase. With bright, jewel-like colors and a warm perfume, ‘Martha’ can be the belle of the ball in your spring garden. 8WC-O, 21-23”, zones 6a-8a(10bWC), from California’s idyllic Carmel Valley. Last offered in 2009.


MARY COPELAND, 1913

One of the most popular doubles of the 20th-century, ‘Mary’ combines a flurry of creamy white petals with shorter, frilly bits of lemon, orange, and tangerine. She’s livelier and more informal than her daffodil sister ‘Irene’ – though apparently this wasn’t true of the real Mary and Irene. For Mary’s true story, told to us by her niece, click here. 4 W-O, 16-20”, zones 4a-7b(9bWC), from Holland. Last offered in 2016. Our grower is increasing his stock and we hope to offer it again soon. If you’d like to be notified the next time we offer this treasure, sign up for an email alert.


MILAN, 1932

Prada, Bugatti, La Scala — Milan glittered in the 1930s, and outside of town millions of wild pheasant’s-eyes bloomed. This worthy namesake is, in the words of Michael Jefferson-Brown, a “tall, immaculate flower, boldly posed.” Like all pheasant’s-eyes it mingles well with the fresh foliage and early blooms of late-spring perennial borders — and its fragrance is sheer luxury. 9 W-GYR, 18-20”, zones 4a-7a(9bWC), from Pennsylvania. Last offered in 2007.


MRS. LANGTRY, 1869

A leading light of the Victorian daffodil renaissance, this rare beauty has milk-white petals and a crinkled yellow cup that matures to creamy white ringed with pale, canary yellow. Guy Wilson, famed breeder of new daffodils, wrote in 1929, “I hope we shall not lose altogether some of the older flowers of such undeniable beauty and grace as ‘Mrs. Langtry’.” 2 W-WWY, 18-20”, zones 5a-7b(9bWC), from Holland. Last offered in 2015. Unfortunately we discovered that what we were selling as ‘Mrs. Langtry’ – from one of Holland’s greatest experts on historic bulbs – was actually something else. See both here, and then please help us spread the word!


ORANGE PHOENIX, EGGS & BACON, 1731

This exuberant double has been a cottage garden favorite for centuries, much like its fraternal twin ‘Butter and Eggs’. With whorls of cream-colored petals and ruffled bits of orange, it’s not only one of the best doubles for the South but, as E.A. Bowles wrote in the 1930s, “still grown wherever gardeners are wise enough to value old plants of reliably vigorous constitution.” 4 W-O, 16-18”, zones 5b-8b(10bWC), from Wisconsin. Last offered in 2017. Unfortunately we’ve lost our grower and haven’t found another yet who can guarantee true stock. We’ll keep searching, though, and hope to offer it again soon.


N. jonquilla ‘Flore Pleno’, QUEEN ANNE’S DOUBLE JONQUIL, 1611

True stock! Looking like prom dresses for honeybees, these tiny, exquisite double jonquils are fluffy with extra petals and swooningly fragrant. Don’t be fooled by sources that sell the much larger, much cheaper ‘Double Campernelle’ as ‘Queen Anne’s’. Although that’s a fine flower, the true ‘Queen’ is absolutely heart-stopping. 4Y-Y, 8-10”, zones 6b-8b(10bWC), from Holland’s greatest daffodil collector. Last offered in 2014. Our grower is increasing his stock and we hope to offer it again soon. If you’d like to be notified the next time we offer this treasure, sign up for an email alert.


RED DEVON, 1943

True stock! This fiery jewel won major awards in 1950, 1968, 1977, 1985, and the RHS AGM – one of gardening’s highest accolades – in 1993. With a broad, ruffled cup dipped in incandescent orange, it gives the spring garden a joyful jolt of intensity. It’s named for the historic “red” cattle of Devonshire, and we get a kick out of that, too. 2 Y-O, 24-26”, zones 5a-7b(9bWC), from Holland. Last offered in 2015. Our grower is increasing his stock and we hope to offer it again soon. If you’d like to be notified the next time we offer this treasure, sign up for an email alert.


SAINT KEVERNE, 1934

Winner of the Wister Award, the ADS’s highest honor, this Cornish beauty blooms vigorously from Canada to the Gulf. As Bill Finch of The Mobile Press-Register says, it’s “perfectly sculpted,” and with its slender proportions it always seems to blend in beautifully. 2 Y-Y, 16-18”, zones 4b-9a(11bWC), from Holland. Last offered in 2015. Unfortunately we’ve lost our grower and haven’t found another yet who can guarantee true stock. We’ll keep searching, though, and hope to offer it again soon. Stay tuned with our email newsletter.


SEAGULL, 1893

Prettier than any gull we’ve ever seen, this free-flowering Victorian classic has pristine white petals that recall wings, sails, or the sweeping arms of a windmill. Its short canary cup is fleetingly edged with apricot. For best color, protect from full sun. 3 W-Y, 14-18”, zones 5a-7b(9bWC), from Holland. Last offered in 2010. We may offer it again periodically. If you’d like to be notified the next time we offer this treasure, sign up for an email alert.


SHIRLEY TEMPLE, 1937

Named for the curly-haired moppet who brightened spirits during the Great Depression, this award-winning double is more commonly known as ‘Snowball’ today. With an ivory ruff of outer petals and a center rosette touched by sunshine, it’s informal, refreshing, and lightly scented. 4 W-W, 18-20” late-middle blooming, zones 4a-7b(9bWC), from Holland. Last offered in 2009. If you’d like to be notified the next time we offer this treasure, sign up for an email alert.


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