Daffodils should be treated, displayed well

Daily Press (Newport News, Va.)April 6, 2013 

JANET WORNE | STAFF — Herald-Leader

It's been a rainy winter with early spring winds blowing away any remnants of fall leaves.

Through it all, daffodils by the thousands emerge to remind you spring is here.

Daffodils are easy, enjoyable and enchanting, looking like oversize cousins to the smaller buttercups that later fill meadows and open fields.

When bloom time is done, daffodil foliage yellows and browns, a look that is not attractive but is necessary. This four- to six-week process helps the plant manufacture food for next year's flowers. Much of that food is transported to the bulb below ground. Removing, braiding, rubber banding or tying the foliage interrupts that important process because it limits the amount of green that is getting sunlight. An easy disguise is to interplant hostas, coral bells, lilies and other perennials that leaf out in early spring.

Here are some creative ways to display daffodils in your home, courtesy of Ibulb.org, a Dutch bulb information center.

Bench warmer: A simple row of canning jars creates a uniform arrangement. A wooden bench set in your foyer, kitchen window or adjacent to a sofa is the perfect complement to the rural feel of this tableau.

Lemon lollipop: Bunch some daffodils and wrap them with strips of natural burlap or brightly-colored twine to create a topiarylike shape that will stand in a wide windowsill where you can enjoy them while you use the kitchen sink or do the laundry.

Pitcher perfect: Daffodils look casually comfortable, and shabby chic, when displayed in pottery, glass and tin pitchers, crocks and measuring cups for centerpieces and place settings.

Tray chic: Place single or threesome daffodils in glass bud vases topping a silver tray. Add a few fine twigs the offset the formality of the arrangement.

Wood-n-nice: Glue bark to empty tin cans or purchase bark containers at a retail store. Fill the containers with daffodils, and place them on a tray of moss for an instant woodsy retreat.

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