Recently the team has been on a wild daffodil hunt here at the Falls of Clyde. Wild daffodils have been introduced into Scotland but are native to England and Wales. Technically they would be classed as non-native but as they are not an invasive species, and don’t pose a risk to other flora and fauna, they are ok in my book! In our site management plan species list, wild daffodil was listed but there were no other clues as to their whereabouts. Armed with the knowledge of what to look for, we have been searching out for these yellow beauties.
We did not have a William Wordsworth moment, ‘When all at once I saw a crowd, a host of golden daffodils’. However we have found a clump along the boardwalk and with more searching we hope to find others. If you are out on the reserve in the next few weeks, have a look at our wildflower trail, where we will be putting out a marker to showcase them.
So what is the difference between them and cultivated varieties? Well, wild daffodils are pretty much identical but are smaller, although not as small as the miniature varieties (are you scratching your head yet!). The green leaves and stem are a paler silvery/grey green colour. The perianth (or what we might see as six yellow petals) is darker in colour than the inner trumpet which measures 25-30mm long. The height of the flowering stem is between 20-35cm, the height of the leaves 12-35cm and only 5-12mm wide. And the reason it is good to know the difference between wild and cultivated varieties is because although it is nice to pick a bunch of daffodils whilst out walking – you wouldn’t want to accidentally the wild varieties that are beneficial to wildlife.
Laura Preston – Scottish Wildlife Trust, Falls of Clyde Ranger
Help support our vital work and join us today!