Spring is on a staggered schedule. Just check your thermometer and you’ll see the yo-yo in action. Fortunately, most bulbs are designed to take the seesawing in stride. The Colorblends Spring Garden displays how much weather can impact a spring bulb show, with new blooms popping up quickly in warm weather and lingering longer in the cooler air. If you visit The Garden, you’ll see the display changing every week through mid-May. As you walk along the blooms you might also notice—a spring display can be staged in tiers.
You would assume that the first daffs to pop up would all be short, right? Wrong! If you play your cards right and plant smart, you can get a dose of daffodils on all levels. I think of the wee Tête-à-Tête as one of the first daffodils out of the starting gate in spring, and sure enough, this little wonder stands only 7-9 inches above the ground. Following close on its heels is Jetfire, which stands just a little taller at 10-12 inches. This bloom couples the a fiery orange cup with yellow petals flung back to emphasize its jet-like propulsion, and lingers for weeks. No wonder Jacqueline van der Kloet selected Jetfire as the star performer weaving throughout The Garden. And she planted plenty for continuity.
Amid the Jetfire display, Narcissus Rapture sweeps in at 12-14 inches with its long, oboe-shaped cup and back-swept petals. Rapture does not stand alone, because the taller bright yellow daffodils are already making a strong showing. It will bloom for weeks. Golden Harvest and Marieke rush up to blossom fast and unabashedly yellow, clocking in early at a stately 16-18 inches. Want something more subdued? Cornish King profiles its lemon-yellow trumpet against a crown of broad white petals.
Across The Garden, Brackenhurst rejects subtlety with yellow petals encircling a cup of intense orange and standing sturdy at 16-18 inches. In other words: You can have early impact on all levels with just daffodils.
About the Author
Author, garden writer, lecturer, blogger, and photographer Tovah Martin has spent decades working with and writing about bulbs. An honorary member of the Garden Club of America, her most recent book, The Garden in Every Sense and Season, was awarded the Gold Medal from GardenComm. A fanatical hands-on organic gardener outdoors and inside, she digs into Furthermore, her own 7-acre Connecticut farmstead.