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Re: Daffodil question

I can't really answer your question, but a few points from your message
caught my eye.

What do you mean by "modern" daffodils?  circa?
Park staff and volunteers may have planted the ones you've seen recently.
They may have deliberately, carefully naturalized the bulbs, making an
effort toward the least amount of disturbance so that the new plantings
would not appear 'cultivated'.
You may have simply visited in the past at a time that these 'new' ones
weren't in bloom.
Miniature Trumpets - like 'Little Gem' and 'Little Spell' might look like
small 'King Alfred's

Re spread: from Michael Jefferson-Brown's "Narcissus":
Species Narcissi depend on seed for increase.  Hybrids, with mixed genetic
material, do not breed true.  N. triandrus, for example is almost
exclusively dependent on seed for its increase, spread and survival...Pods
may have 50-100 seeds...a clump has the potential to instigate a population
explosion.  Rates of survival in the wild must be low. To find a stand of a
species not freely seeding suggests that it is the result of a single clone
spread by cultivation or by shifting mountain soils or the scrambling feet
of goat or sheep...Clones of wild daffodils are to a degree inhibited from
setting seed by their own pollen.  Pollination by another clone of their
species helps...

Just some notes, not an answer, but interesting.

----- Original Message ----- 
From: <Aplfgcnys@aol.com>

. Adjoining the refuge is Allee House, an
> eighteenth century farmhouse that has been either restored or preserved.
...Several years
> we have noticed daffodils growing at one of the overlook sites beside  an
> impoundment, but assumed they had been planted by park staff or
volunteers.  I will
> continue that assumption since these are fairly "modern" daffs - large
> cream-colored blooms with darker small cups.  This year when we drove down
the Allee
> House road we were astonished to find the woods full of daffodils,
too...These appeared to be rather small-flowered golden trumpet types - like
> 'King Alfreds' but not that large.  My DH assured me that there had once
> another house there, and perhaps he is right.  I'd say these are pretty
> old-fashioned bulbs.  But my question is this.  These have obviously
spread much
> farther than from an ancient door-yard garden.  How do they spread in such
> environment?  By seed?  Or do animals spread them?  ...the area where the
> grow doesn't look as if it has been cultivated for a generation at least -
> are some pretty large deciduous trees - sweetgum, holly, etc. and a real
> of honeysuckle. It would be shaded in the summer but is sunny at this end
> the year, and I know daffs will grow in such situations.  I also know they
> spread, but if I don't dig and divide mine every five or six years they
just crowd
> themselves right out of the ground.  I'm really intrigued by this so would
> appreciate your thoughts.
> Auralie
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