Sundisc

'Sundisc'
Small Jonquil


"One little daffodil had nothing much to do,
Out popped another one, then there were two.
Two little daffodils were smiling at a bee,
Out popped another one, then there were three.
Three little daffodils were growing by the door,
Out popped another one, then there were four.
Four little daffodils were glad to be alive,
Out popped another one, then there were five.
Five little daffodils were wearing golden crowns,
They danced in the breeze in green satin gowns."

-Daffodil Finger Play,
traditional

   

SundiscThe question sometimes arises "What is the difference between a narcissus & a daffodil & a jonquil?" Of course there is no difference between a Narcissus & a Daffodil. Narcissus is the scientific name, but so familiar as to serve as a common name as well, & Daffodil is the common name, an English corruption of Asphodel.

Even so, there have been experts in the past who've insisted that while all daffodils are narcissi, not all narcissi are daffodils. No less an authority than E. A. Bowles attempted to promulgate distinctions that are entirely dubious.

The third name, Jonquil, is more easily assigned to semi-dwarf & miniature daffodils of the species Narcissus jonquilla only. Yet inevitably the name is colloquially applied to any daffodil.

In autum 2003 we planted eight 'Sundisc' jonquil bulbs, mixed in with nine little 'Lilac Wonder' botanical tulips, in a sunny streetside garden. They are at the foot of a carefree Rose of Sharon 'Aphrodite.'

Sundisc'Sundisc' is an odd wee daffodil in that the bright yellow cup flares so much & is so nearly flat it does not look like a cup at all.

With the cup being so flattened against pale yellow petals, & the petals themselves unusually rounded, the overall effect is one of a flat disc, hence the cultivar name. One catalog described their flat circular sunniness as like "gold doubloons."

At the very bottom center of its flattened cup the flower is green, giving the impression of a lizard's eye. Each stem will produce one to three of these unique blooms.

As a "reverse bicolor" it starts out in late April/early May as a yellow on yellow flower, but the perianth fades so that in early or mid May is white with yellow corolla. The three photos on this page show the progression of yellow on yellow, to yellow on straw yellow, to yellow on white.

This dwarf usually remains around six or eight inches tall. It was developed by Alec Gray, a Cornish gardener who also raised the popular miniatures 'Tete-a-Tete' & 'Sundial.'

The greater majority of our miniature narcissuses bloom early in spring. This one is flowering in the garden last, erupting late in April & lasting through much of May.

'Sundisc' is a recipient of the vaunted Award of Garden Merit. It naturalizes quickly & will need to be dug up as often as every third year to separate the rapidly reproducing bulbs.

   



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