A Garden of Pleasant Flowers
Paradisi in Sole Paradisus Terrestris (1629)
This Persian Daffodill differeth from all other kindes of Daffodils in his manner of growing, for it never hath leaves and flowers at one time together, wherein it is like unto a Colchicum, yet in roote and leafe it is a Daffodill. The roote is a little blackish on the outside, somewhat like the roote of the Autumne Daffodill, from which riseth up a naked foote stalke, bearing one pale yellow flower, breaking through a thinne skinne, which first enclosed it, composed of six leaves, the three outermost being a little larger than the rest, in the middle of the flower there are six small chives, and a longer pointell. The whole flower is of an unpleasant sent: After the flower is past, come up the leaves, sometimes before Winter, but most usually after the deepe of Winter is past with us, in the beginning of the yeare, which are broad, long, and of a pale greene colour, like the leaves of other Daffodils, but not greene as the Autumne Daffodill is, and besides they doe a little twine themselves, as some of the Pancratium, or bastard Sea Daffodils doe.
The greater Autumn Daffodill riseth up with three or foure faire broad and short leaves at the first, but afterwards grow longer, of a very deepe or darke greene colour, in the middle of which riseth up a short, stiffe, round footstalke, bearing one faire yellow flower on the head thereof (inclosed at the first in a thinne skinne, or huske) and consisteth of six leaves as the former, with certaine chives in the middle, as all or most other Daffodils have, which passeth away without shew of any seed, or head for seed, although under the head there is a little greene know, which peradventure would beare seed, if our sharpe Winters did not hinder it. The roote is great and round, covered over with a blackish skinne or coate.
Clusius setteth downe, that the manner of the flowring of this lesser Daffodill, is more like unto the Persian Daffodill, then unto the former greater Autumne kind, but I doe finde that it doth in the same sort, as the greater kinde, rise up with his leaves first, and the flowers a while after: the flower of this is lesser, and a little paler then the flower of the greater kinde, but consisting in like sort of six leaves, narrow and sharpe pointed; the greene leaves also are almost of as deepe a greene colour, as the greater kinde, but smaller and narrower, and a little hollow in the middle. The roote is also alike, but lesser, and covered with a blackish skinne as the former. This hath sometimes borne blacke round seede in three square heads.
The Persian Daffodill hath beene sent sometimes, but very seldome, among other rootes from Constantinople, and it is probable by the name whereby it was sent, that it should naturally grow in Persia.
The other two have likewise been sent from Constantinople, and as it is thought, grow in Thracia, or thereabouts.
They all doe flower much about one time, that is, about the end of September, and in October.
The first hath been sent by the name of Serincade Persiana, and thereupon is called Narcissus Persicus, The Persian Daffodill.
The other two have been thought by divers to be Colchica, and so have they called them, upon no other ground, but that their flower is in forme and time somewhat like Colchicum, when as if they had marked them better, they might plainly discerne, that in all other things they did resemble Daffodils; but now the names of Colchicum luteum maius, & minus, is quite lost, time having worne them out, and they are called by most Herbalists now adayes, Narcissus Autumnalis maior & minor, The greater and the lesser Autumne Daffodill.
This little Autumne Daffodill riseth with his flowers first out of the ground, without any leaves at all. It springeth up with one or two stalkes about a finger long, every one bearing out of a small huske one small white flower, laid open abroad like unto the Starre white Daffodill, before spoken of: in the middle of the flower is a small yellow cup of a meane size, and after the flower is past, there commeth in the same place a small head, containing small, round, blacke seede, like unto the Autumne Hyacinth the leaves come up after the seede is ripe and gone, being small and narrow, not much bigger then the Autumne Hyacinth: the roote is small and blackish on the outside.
This Daffodill groweth in Spaine, where Clusius saw it, and brought it into these parts.
It flowereth in the beginning of Autumne, and his seede is ripe in the end of October in those hot Countries, but in ours it will scarce abide to shew a flower.
The Spaniards, as Clusius reporteth, call it Tonada, and he upon the sight thereof, Narcissus Autumnalis minor albus, and wee in English thereafter, The little white Autumne Daffodill.
This Indian Daffodill is so differing, both
in forme, not having a cup, and in color, being red, from the whole Family of
the Daffodills (except the next that foloweth, and the Autumne Daffodills) that
some might justly question the fitnesse of his place here. But because as all
the plants, whether bulbous or other, that come from the Indies, East or West
(although they differ very notably, from those that grow in these parts of the
world) must in a generall survey and muster be ranked everyone, as neere as
the surveiours wit will direct him, under some other growing with us.
This Daffodill hath divers broad leaves, somewhat like unto the common or ordinary white Daffodill, of a grayish greene colour; from the sides whereof, as also from the middle of them, rise up sometimes two stalkes together, but most usually one after another (for very often but one stalk alone, which is of a faint reddish colour, about a foote high or more, at the toppe whereof, out of a deepe red skinne or huske, commeth forth one flower bending downwards, consisting of sixe long leaves without any cup in the middle, of an excellent red colour, tending to crimson; three of these leaves that turn upwards, are somewhat larger than those three that hand downewards, having sixe threads or chives in the middle, tipt with yellow pendants, and a three forked stile longer than the rest, and turning up the end thereof againe: the root is set forth by Aldinus, Cardinall Farnesius his Physitian, that at Rome it rose up with stalkes of flowers, before any leaves appeared.
Because this Daffodill is so like in flower unto the former, although differing in colour, I thought it the fittest place to ioyne it the next thereunto. This early Daffodill hath three or foure short very greene leaves, so like unto the leaves of the Autumne Daffodill, that many may easily bee deceived in mistaking one for another, the difference consisting chiefly in this, that the leaves of this are not so broad or so long, nor rise up in Autumne: in the midst of these leaves riseth up a short green stalke, an handfull high, or not much higher usually, (I speake of it as it hath often flowred with mee, whether the cause be the coldness of the time wherein it flowreth, or the nature of the the plant, or of our climate, I am in some doubt; but I doe well remember, that the stalkes of some plants, that have flowred later with me then the first, have by the greater strength, and comfort of the Sunne, risen a good deale higher then the first) bearing at the top, out of a whitish thinne skinne striped with greene, one flower a little bending downewards, consisting of sixe leaves, laid open almost in the same manner with the former Indian Daffodill, whereof some doe a little turne up their points againe, of a faire pale yellow colour, having sixe white chives within it, tipt with yellow pendents, and a longer pointell: the roote is not very great, but blackish on the outside, so like unto the Autumne Daffodill, but that it is yellow under the first or outermost coate, that one may easily mistake one for another.
It was sent us from Constantinople among other rootes, but as wee may ghesse by the name, it should come thither from Trapezunte or Trebizond.
It flowerth sometimes in December, if the former part of the Winter have been milde; but most usually about the end of January, or else in Februarie the beginning or the end.
Wee doe usually call it from the Turkish name, Narcissus Trapezunticus, and some also call it Narcissus vernus praecox, as Clusius doth, in English, The early Daffodill of Trebizond.