Wednesday, 1 March 2017

Shoal of Minnows

See the daffodils springing into bloom reminded me of some photographs sent by Bruce Brown a few weeks back. He has known a stand of vegetative non-native daffodils at Grass Wood (VC64) for a number of years, but was finally able to grow an offset to flowering in 2016.

Setting aside (the desire to rant about!) the need of certain sectors of society to introduce non-native bulbs into native wild habitats, this is certainly an interesting find. It is clearly a member of the tazetta group and appears to match the cultivar 'Minnow', a popular cultivar registered in the early 1960's.

The origins of 'Minnow' are obscure but the Daffodil Register suggests that it is a backcross to N. tazetta from an earlier cross of cultivars that may have involved N. poeticus in the parentage. Perhaps involving parents similar to 'Canaliculatus' (probably a form of tazetta subsp. tazetta) and 'Poetaz' (tazetta x ?poeticus), between which it seems intermediate. If true it has a similar but more complex origin to Primrose-peerless (Narcissus x medioluteus), but this name as currently used has a rather narrow concept. Whatever the origin it is a charming little daffodil.

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