After I had been gardening only a few years, I planted tulips. Tulips, I thought, would come up every year, and during early spring, before the other perennials are really coming into their own, tulips are always a welcome splash of color. Well, I must admit that though my tulips are beautiful, I have since learned that most tulips are not really reliably perennial—most of them will come up for a few years and then sort of start to peter out. And mine DO seem to have been fewer and fewer every year. Now, I know there are people out there who will say, “My grandmother planted tulips 30 years ago and they still come up every year, thicker than ever.” And I’m sure there are tulips that do that (at least for other people). But I’ve never had great luck with choosing those really hardy ones, apparently.
And then a seasoned gardener told me about daffodils–daffodils not only come up every year, they actually are more likely to increase in number as the years go on. So, I was sold on daffodils (literally—WAY more bang for your buck). Also, I was told, deer don’t like them. Of course, deer are the only varmints I DON’T have in my yard. But rabbits don’t seem to like them too well, either. And rabbits I’ve got.
I had planted 30 or so of a daffodil cultivar called ‘Jetfire’ probably 5 or 6 years ago, and they certainly seemed to be doing well. Well, I put in a new front garden a couple of years ago, so it still had some nice big empty spots, and I thought that front garden would be a perfect place for a really spectacular display of daffodils. (Have I mentioned that reining myself in is not my strong suit?)
So last fall I bought 75 daffodil bulbs each of four different varieties—since ‘Jetfire’ is classified as “early” in the bulb catalog, I decided to go with a variety of time-lines for blooming, so that I could stretch my daffodil display throughout the entire daffodil season, instead of just having them blooming for a couple of weeks. I got ‘February Gold’, a “very early” daffodil; ‘Minnow’, classified as “early-mid”; ‘Tripartite’, a “mid”; and ‘Yellow Cheerfulness’, a “mid-late”.
They’ve been coming up for a week or so—now I’m just waiting for them to get big enough to start blooming. . . I sure hope they’re as beautiful in my garden as they’ve been in my mind all these months.