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It’s Incomparable!

This "Incomparabilis" type daffodil sparkles in Thera Lou Adams' field.

A few of the plants that came with my house are extremely precious to me.

Of course, there is the 100′ tall white oak, the turk’s cap mallow and the beautyberry that had been allowed to seed in from the woods.

The only daffodil that I recall from the early days is a lovely star shaped thing with creamy petals and a lemon yellow cup.  When I first encountered her, she had been planted in a circle around a flowering peach.  After the peach died, the circle of daffodils looked much like a ringworm.

Not a good first impression.

I craved other daffodils that were brighter, larger and that had recognizable names.

I was curious, so I asked around and met someone locally who called my “found” daffodil ‘Texas Star’.

I queried and searched but never heard that name again.

My daffodil friends, though, did speak in reverence of the hybrid Narcissus x incomparabilis.  This old school daf is a naturally occurring cross between the Lent lily (Narcissus pseudacorus) and the poets’s narcissus (Narcissus poeticus).

'Sir Watkin' is a very successful cultivar.

They say that over 100 named varieties came from this coupling including the famous ‘Sir Watkin’.

The incomparabilis part translates to “none can compare”.  The name was bequeathed early before Linnaeus devised the binomial nomenclature system.  The incomparable name was due to the large size of the flower compared with both the wild parents.

We now would consider it a medium or even a small flowered hybrid.

But – I have found several internet sources that list the common name as the star daffodil.  Not the Texas Star Daffodil, mind you, but pretty close!

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