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Honeybee

'Honeybee' mingles with 'Autumn Pearl', 'Peggy Clarke' Japanese apricot and the final roses of the season.

We’ve barely had any winter yet – just a few nights in the mid-20’s and I already have spring fever.

I’m fairly certain that ‘Honeybee’ is the cause of my dilemma.

A couple of months ago I splurged on some daffodil bulbs from Bill the Bulb Baron.  Many of the Bulb Baron’s hybrids have been selected for their early bloom time.  I planted two of these very early bloomers – ‘Autumn Pearl’ and ‘Honeybee’  in the front driveway bed where I could not fail to notice their first flowers.

‘Autumn Pearl’ bloomed first.   I have really enjoyed her wonderful bunches of cream and white blossoms that are reminiscent of ‘Grand Primo’.     ‘Autumn Pearl’ has appeared in several bouquets.  She has also inspired me to pause and watch the wild bees and sulfur butterflies that forage in her nether regions.  That is quite a gift for the hectic holiday season.

When ‘Honeybee’ came along just last week though,  I was even more smitten.  Both these hybrids have one tazetta or bunch daffodil parent.  ‘Honeybee’, however has a wild jonquil (Narcissus jonquilla) or “Little Sweetie” as the other parent.  This means that my sweet little ‘Honeybee’ is golden yellow and full of that delicious jonquil fragrance that I cherish.

I’m pretty sure that i t was not just the appearance of the first yellow narcissus of the season that sent me longing for spring.  I think the scent sent me!

Now I’m not saying that I want to cut the winter short… I love that season too.  I’m just saying that sweet little ‘Honeybee’ with her precocious golden delightfully aromatic flowers makes me smile with thoughts of things to come.

Tazetta Tuesday

The lovely tazetta 'Grand Primo' has about 10 flowers on each stalk.

Being a diehard for daffodils, I recently made several bulb orders.  The packages are slowly starting to trickle in.

Yesterday UPS brought the tazetta bulbs that I had ordered from Bill The Bulb Baron.  I was so excited that I proclaimed it “Tazetta Tuesday”.

Tazettas, in case you don’t know, are a particular division of daffodils.  They hail from Division 8 and are commonly called bunch daffodils due to the fact that their flowers are borne in clusters of 3 to 18 or more.  They are hardy from zones 5 to 9.

Some common tazetta daffodils include ‘Geranium’, ‘Cragford’ and ‘Grand Primo’.  They are well adapted to the Deep South and are treasured for their musky fragrance.

This behemoth bulb arrived in a mail order shipment yesterday.

Today’s gift box arrived in pretty good shape.  I tore into it and eagerly began examining the contents.

I was so impressed with the size and quality of the bulbs that I asked my Mother-in-law to hold one particularly large bulb so that I could photograph it.

Bill the Bulb Baron is also known as William R. P. Welch.  He lives in Santa Cruz, California and his bulb farm is nearby.  He is so enamored of tazetta daffodils that he has become a breeder and has introduced several new varieties.

Check out his site at  http://www.billthebulbbaron.com and maybe you’ll be opening your own gift box in the next couple of weeks.

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