The Daffodils of Springby Carol Caggiano on April 8, 2011 at 12:00 pm
Daffodils are a harbinger of spring, and in my neighborhood it’s one of the few things that the deer don’t eat. That makes them my favorite flower for sure. Nothing says spring to me more than a vase of daffodils. Cut or buy them when they are just starting to show color to have a maximum vase life. We usually only expect 5 days or so from cut daffodils but their exuberance more than makes up for their fragility.
There are all kinds of rumors out there regarding cut daffodils. One theory is that they kill other flowers so you can never mix daffodils with other spring blooms. Not so. Yes, daffodils secrete a sap that can shorten the vase life of other flowers; however there is a way around that. Cut your daffodils and put them in a vase of water by themselves for about 30 minutes. Remove and arrange with additional flowers, however do not recut the daffodils before placing in the arrangement. This assures that they do not secrete the sap that causes problems and your arrangement will be lovely and last beautifully.
Daffodils need a lot of water, so it is important to keep the vase full. For a more creative display, try using a collection of small bottles for your blooms. The bottles can either be all the same or a mixed collection of different shapes although usually of one color looks best. Put one or two blooms in each bottle and create a display either gathered together or sprinkled down the center of a dining table or coffee table. Place candles, eggs or nests in between the bottles for more interest. This is one of my favorite ways to arrange flowers. Be on the look out for fun bottles to add to your collections. Your florist will be helpful in giving you additional ideas for blooms that will work well with your bottle collection.
This time of year potted daffodils are also a great addition to your home to give you that “spring is in the air” feeling. Pots of bulbs both full size and petite are readily available. Do not purchase plants with fully open blooms unless you need them for a party or event. Buy when the flowers are still green and just pushing up from the bulbs. You will have the opportunity to watch the flowers open and you will be able to enjoy the plants longer. When the plants are finished blooming allow the foliage to die back naturally to allow strength to go back into the bulb. Stop watering and let the bulbs go dormant, storing in a cool, dry place and then plant outside in the fall to bloom next spring.
However you might choose to enjoy them, there is nothing more fun for spring than daffodils. You’ll also find that daffodils are very affordable so treat yourself to a few bunches here and there or buy a big bunch for someone special.
Interested in learning about other types of flowers or plants? Check out aboutflowers.com’s flower library.