Daffodils were originally brought to Britain by the Romans who thought that the sap had healing powers but it can actually cause skin irritation. A substance called galanthine is now extracted to help ease Alzheimer's disease. The UK exports 10,000 tons of bulbs to the rest of the world with nearly half going to Holland.
Narcissus is one of the easiest and most popular of all spring flowering bulbs. The name Daffodil is used when the central cup is as long or longer than the petals. Plant August to September at a depth of 6 inch / 15cm. Flowers March - April.
This is an excellent plant to grow and will sell well as a cut flower. Also proving popular with people who do not wish to cut daffodils growing in their gardens. Unfortunately it does not last as long as a cut flower compared to being left in the soil.
Britain's climate is very good for growing daffodils and the bulbs and flowers are generally larger. There are some 2,500 varieties of daffodils and Britain can offer up to 600 types. Varieties like the Carlton, Dutch Master, Fortune, Golden Harvest and Hollywood are among the main bulbs.
Daffodils need the energy passed down from the foliage to the bulb to produce the following year's flowers. Don't tie leaves as this stops the light getting to them. Six weeks after flowering, you can cut off the leaves without affecting the flowering next year. Remove all dead flowers by nipping off at the neck, behind the seed pod. Keep the soil surface around well hoed to prevent the entry of Narcissus Fly. Remove and burn any bulbs whose foliage show signs of disease. After flowering, keep bulbs watered and feed once a week with a high potash fertilizer until the leaves die back.