N. pseudonarcissus, LENT LILY, EASTER FLOWER, 1200        
This sublimely simple wildflower has graced English gardens since medieval days and inspired Wordsworth’s famous poem. It grows without care from Maine to California but is best loved in the Upper South, thriving in pastures and woods where homes once stood. Traditionally called Easter flower or buttercups in the US, it’s very early blooming, with a narrow trumpet and lighter petals that sweep gracefully forward. 13 Y-Y, 10-12”, zones 5a-8b(10bWC), from Mississippi. Last offered in 2014. Our grower is increasing his stock and we’ll offer it again sometime in the future. For an alert, subscribe to our email newsletter.
LINTIE, 1937        
This fragrant charmer looks like a miniature, multi-flowered, soft yellow pheasant’s eye. The child of a wild jonquil and N. poeticus, it has rounded petals of palest yellow and a small, flat, golden cup that’s banded with deep orange. It’s named for a Scottish songbird and its fragrance — as you might guess from its parents — is heavenly. 7 Y-YYO, 8-12”, zones 6b-8aS/10WC, from Holland. Last offered web-only in 2012. We’ll offer it again periodically, or we could special order it for you.
LITTLE GEM, 1938        
No bigger than a crocus (that’s ‘Paulus Potter’ and Tulipa schrenkii in our photo) and almost as early, this selected form of the Pyrenean mountains wildflower N. minor is so small and perfect you may have trouble believing it’s real. Its tiny, bright yellow trumpets fit anywhere and force eagerly. 1 Y-Y, 4-6”, zones 4-7S/9WC, from Holland. Last offered in 2004. Available elsewhere, or we could special order it for you.
MACLEAYI, 1823        
Here’s a perky little flower with a “stove-pipe” cup no wider than a pencil — and a mysterious past. Naturalist and wine merchant Alexander Macleay reputedly sent it to London from Smyrna in the 1820s, but it has never been found growing in the wild anywhere and experts continue to debate its parentage. No matter, “it is a jolly little plant and a collector’s piece,” says John Blanchard, and “deplorably scarce.” 13 W-Y, 8-10”, zones 6-8, from Holland. Last offered web-only in 2007. We lost our grower and haven't found another who offers virus-free stock.
MADAME DE GRAAFF, 1887        
“Save the Bulbs!” we say, and Jane Kuitems did, rescuing from oblivion the finest white daffodil of the 19th century. In the 1930s Jane’s mother worked for a florist who forced daffodils for cutflowers. She planted some at home, they multiplied like rabbits, and everyone loved them. Decades later Jane sent us a few, experts helped us identify it, and in 2004 we re-introduced this elegant grand dame — to a frenzy. Last offered in 2007. 1 W-W, 14-16”, zones 4a-7b/9WC, from Pennsylvania. Last offered in 2011. We hope to offer it again soon. For an alert, sign up for our email newsletter.
MARIONETTE, 1946        
This pixie, born of the tiny, wild N. asturiensis crossed with N. poeticus, has soft, primrose petals and a bright yellow cup touched with orange. Bred by Alec Gray, the 20th century’s pioneering breeder of miniatures, it’s too large for the show-bench today but utterly charming in the garden. A connoisseurs’ choice, it was already “very scarce” by the 1960s. 2 Y-YYO, 8-10”, zones 5-7, from Holland. Last offered web-only in 2006. We could special order it for you.
MARJORIE HINE, 1943        
With all the intensity and glamour of a Hollywood star, this early-blooming Australian has a brilliant lemon-to-orange cup that’s extravagantly ruffled and frilled. “Turning around” daffodils from Down Under so they bloom in spring up here is an expensive process, so only the best are chosen — and ‘Marjorie’ definitely made the grade. 2W-YYO, 18-20”, zones 5-8aS/10WC, from Holland. Last offered in 2009. We may offer it again periodically, or we could special order it for you. For an alert, sign up for our email newsletter.
MARTHA WASHINGTON, 1927        
Though this dramatic poetaz has just two or three florets per stem, they’re so gosh darn BIG — up to 3 inches across — that you’ll only need a few stems to fill a vase. With bright, jewel-like colors and a warm perfume, ‘Martha’ can be the belle of the ball in your spring garden. 8WC-O, 21-23”, zones 6-8aS/10WC, from California’s idyllic Carmel Valley. Last offered in 2009. We may offer it again periodically, or we could special order it for you.
MILAN, 1932        
Prada, Bugatti, La Scala — Milan glittered in the 1930s, and outside of town millions of wild pheasant’s-eyes bloomed. This worthy namesake is, in the words of Michael Jefferson-Brown, a “tall, immaculate flower, boldly posed.” Like all pheasant’s-eyes it mingles well with the fresh foliage and early blooms of late-spring perennial borders — and its fragrance is sheer luxury. 9 W-GYR, 18-20”, zones 4-6bS/8WC, from Pennsylvania. Last offered in 2007. We may offer it again periodically, or we could special order it for you.
MRS. KRELAGE, 1912        
Named for the wife of one of Holland’s greatest bulb-growers — so you know it has to be good — ‘Mrs. Ernst H. Krelage’ was once sold for a whopping $162 per bulb. Lost to American gardeners for years until we reintroduced it in 2011, it’s a sturdy, buxom flower of creamy white and palest lemon. 1 W-W, 18-20”, zones 4a-8a(10bWC), Holland. Last offered in 2013. We’ll offer it again as soon as bulbs are available. For an alert, sign up for our email newsletter.
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