Daffodil season is starting up here and it makes me happy to see these cheerful yellow blooms brightening up the end-of-winter garden.
I get a lot of questions about growing daffodils in the garden, and in particular in the lawn, so here we go for the answers.
Are daffodils easy to grow?
Yes absolutely! Launch and forget is the way it goes for daffodils. Pop them in the ground, blow them a kiss, wish them well and walk away.
Do I need to dig them up each year?
Well I certainly don’t do that. Honestly life is a little short for digging up daffodils each year, so if you have the space in your beds or in the lawn, then just leave them in place and they will happily hibernate, multiply and reflower the next year.
Are there many different varieties?
Yes there are a lot of varieties. Those I have in the lawn here are mostly the same variety, whose name I don’t actually know. In the beds I have quite a few different breeds, some taller than others, some with double blooms, others more simple. It’s nice to have a mix.
If I buy paperwhites at Christmas time can I put them in the garden afterwards?
Yes indeed! I do this every year. I buy a lot of paperwhites, hyacinths and grape hyacinths for the house . Once they have finished flowering I pop them outside, and when I get a moment, plant them beneath bushes , or at the foot of trees. The next year I’m rewarded with the pretty blooms that appear in March.
Can I plant daffodils in pots
Yes! Here is a photo by my friend Charlotte Ann Fidler , who creates an amazing display of daffodils each year outside her front door in the UK. This is the ideal space for combining different varieties and playing with height and colour.
Is it easy to grow daffodils in a lawn?
Yes it is easy …. but you have to know that the beautiful clouds of yellow flowers come at a small price. Why is this? Well, daffodils need to die back in order to gain strength to flower again next year. This is why we pick the flowers but leave the long leaves to fade.
If they die back in a flower bed, then you can keep the long floppy leaves tidy by tying them in a knot until they come away easily from the hidden bulb. In the lawn, as you wait for them to die back (about 6 weeks) the grass all around is growing longer and longer. When you finally cut the grass and the daffodil leaves in one go, you are left with a circle of grass roots that have been deprived of light for over a month, and who will form a slightly yellow patch until the grass can renew itself.
I have tried remedying this with fertiliser, with extra water, but it is only time that makes the difference.
Does that mean it’s a bad idea? That’s your decision. Personally I love the clouds of daffodils dancing over my March lawn, and simply decide to ignore the yellow patch which turns up for a week or so in May.
So how about you? Do daffodils grown well in your corner of the world? Do you pick them and bring them inside, or enjoy them in pots on the terrace? Looking forward to your answers.
And if you are impatient for the gardening season to begin, then why not treat yourself to our Le Jardin collection ! A gorgeous mini-collection including a wonderful canvas bag for your tools and many other items. See the details here.