Daffodil – Narcissus psuedonarcissus


“A house with daffodils in it is a house lit up,

whether or no the sun be shining outside.”


A. A. Milne

The common garden daffodil has its origins in the Mediterranean, but today can be found in most spring gardens. The earliest mention of daffodils date to 2-300 years B.C. In about the 6th century A.D. Mohammed wrote about the daffodil. But until the 16th century the daffodil lost favor and was found almost exclusively in the wild. Somewhere 1629 a group of Englishmen apparently fell in love with the daffodil all over again, and introduced it to gardens. The rest is history.

Although the daffodil is toxic and can cause narcotic poisoning and depression of the nervous system, it has been used historically to treat hysterical affections, and epilepsy. The flowers are less effective than the bulbs, but were used as an antispasmodic, and used for congestive bronchial catarrh in children.

Both the Greeks and Egyptians related the flower with death. The Egyptians often hung wreaths of narcissus during funerals. In medieval Europe, it was believed that if a daffodil drooped when you looked at it, it was an omen of death. The Arabians used this flower as an aphrodisiac. A yellow to gold dye is obtained from the flowers.

“Daffodil Itch” is an affliction that florists will occasionally suffer after handling these plants. It  involves dryness, fissures, scaling, and erythema (redness of the skin) in the hands, often accompanied by subungual hyperkeratosis (thickening of the skin beneath the nails).

The daffodil is the American Cancer Society’s symbol of  hope that a cure for cancer will be found. They believe it symbolizes new hope and life. Daffodils are the Flower of March and the Flower of Easter. Daffodil symbolizes ~Unreturned Love~ and stands for Vanity and Egotism.


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