Belonging to the genus Narcissus, the daffodil flower has at least 50 species in its family, and around 13,000 hybrid varieties. Despite the large amount of variation, all daffodils have a corona (also referred to as a “trumpet”), and a ring of petals surrounding it – often called the perianth. Daffodils are mainly yellow with a contrasting color within the corona; however, there is a plethora of hues that range from yellow and white, to pink, to an unusual lime green-like color. The daffodil flower is mostly native to Western European regions, and thrives best in moist, slightly alkaline soil under full sun or very light shade.
The daffodil flower is the country emblem for Gloucestershire, and the national flower of Wales. In the United States, the Florida Daffodil Society has dedicated themselves to identifying, planting and preserving rare and historical breeds of this flower all around the state and within southern Georgia. The passion for these small, beautiful flowers is not relegated to modern times, however. For a long period these flowers were left to grow wild and were essentially forgotten. In 1629, though, Englishmen recognized their value and began digging them up, and planting them back into their own gardens. Further back, however, daffodils were a part of a less cheerful Greek myth. This story tells of the god Narcissus who was self-centered and uninterested in his devoted nymph, Echo. Later in the story he stopped to watch his reflection in a stream; he then fell in and drowned. In remembrance of him, the gods placed Narcissus flowers upon the riverbank. On a lighter side, daffodils also appeared in the story of Persephone being swept off to Hades. When she was later resurrected, she brought with her all of the joys of spring – one of which being the daffodil flower.
As a gift, daffodil flowers can have a duel meaning. Like the god Narcissus, these flowers can be an emblem for vanity, and may give a strong message that the recipient requires a change in their demeanor. Conversely, they are seen as a symbol of rebirth. You may want to present daffodils when the recipient is in the midst of a new beginning, or even to represent the rekindling of an old love.