Here in northwest Tasmania the daffodils are painting gardens, roadsides and even paddocks yellow. Along with the wattles flowering in the bushland and by the roads, they are making sure that spring is celebrated in gold and green.
I have always yearned for sweeps of golden daffodils in my garden. I guess William Wordsworth has a lot to answer for. I have planted countless bulbs under trees and in clumps along the driveways in every garden I’ve owned, but I have never had more than a season or two from them. Too dry and too hot to get them to establish I suspect.
So it has been a wonderful surprise to discover there are thousands of daffodils growing in my Barrington garden. We moved here in mid winter but already the yellow jonquils were flowering fragrantly in clumps under the clothesline. Margaret, who created this garden with her husband Ian, had left a bunch of them in the kitchen to welcome us to our new home. Ten weeks on there are still jonquils in flower in that part of the garden.
Now spring has arrived daffodils welcome us at the front gate and continue to nod their pretty trumpeted flowers at us throughout the garden. My iPad is filled with photographs of daffodils of every hue and size as I try again and again to capture their beauty.
And we are not just talking yellow daffs. There are single and double daffodils and some with pale petals and golden trumpets and others with golden petals and pale trumpets.
We have cornered the market with more ‘Erlicheer’ than you can imagine. I can pick huge fragrant bunches and there’s still more in flower.
I am not the only person in Tasmania celebrating daffodils. There are daffodil shows coming up across the state including one in nearby Sheffield on September 20-21.
And there are daffodils for sale in bunches at roadside stalls. Even though I have so many here I bought a lovely bunch of mixed daffodils from a bucket at our local nursery, The Big Pot. For $3 I couldn’t resist the pink daffodils mixed in higgledy-piggledy with the more common yellows, creams and golds.
After the flowers
Of course the downside of so many bulbs can be what happens when the flowers finish and the leaves start to look ratty and tired. Judging by the number of plants erupting in this garden I am sure the spent daffodils will soon be engulfed in the next wave of spring plants.
To have your own spring celebration of daffodils from the subtropics to cool climates, plant daffodils, jonquils and other narcissus bulbs in autumn.