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Home » What’s the difference between Daffodils, Narcissus and Jonquils?

What’s the difference between Daffodils, Narcissus and Jonquils?

Untitled 1 - Garden Express Australia

There is often a lot of debate and confusion over what we should be calling one of the most popular spring bulbs. Are they Daffodils or Jonquils, and what exactly is a narcissus?

While some people struggle to know the difference between Daffodils and Jonquils, others think it’s correct to use the terms interchangeably, but what does this mean for narcissus? We’ve put this guide together to put an end to the Daffodil debate once and for all.


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The easiest way to learn the difference between a narcissus, a jonquil and a Daffodil is to first understand  that all Daffodils and Jonquils are narcissus.

Narcissus is simply the botanical name that is given to Daffodils and Jonquils.

Over 13,000 hybrids of both Daffodils and Jonquils fall into the Narcissus genus and 40 different species.


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Are Daffodils and Jonquils the same thing? The answer is no. The main difference between the two are their leaves and overall shape. Daffodils can be recognised by their wide, flat leaves and large trumpet shaped flowers.


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Unlike the flat leaves of the Daffodil, Jonquils have leaves that are dark-green and like slender tubes. Jonquils also tend to bloom clusters of several flowers as opposed to one large bloom.

Should I plant daffodils or jonquils?

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Even if you now feel comfortable with being able to recognise the difference between Daffodils and Jonquils, no one will think any less of you as a gardener for using ‘Daffodil’ as a blanket term. From a distance there is hardly a difference between Jonquils and Daffodils.

Both blooms look quite similar in shape and they can flower in either yellow, white or orange depending on the variety you plant. It is once you get closer, or if they’re growing from a vase, that you will notice the nuanced differences such as the shape of the leaves and the amount of blooms on each stem.

To choose which you should plant, consider the different varieties that are available for growth in your location.

Dick Wilden

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Dick Wilden Daffodil is a vibrant Daffodil with bright yellow flowers. Rather than having the usual trumpet centre associated with most Daffodils, the centre of a Dick Wilden Daffodil is a golden frilly centre.





Daffodil Spring Sunshine

Daffodil Spring Sunshine1 - Garden Express Australia

If you’re looking for a Daffodil that will catch people’s eyes then consider Daffodil Spring Sunshine.The blooms on this variety are considered to be ‘miniature’, but they stand out with their showy yellow-white petals and a sunny yellow trumpet in the centre.




Daffodil Double Fashion

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Daffodil Double Fashion truly is one of the most unique blooms in the entire Narcissus genus. This Daffodil is mostly recognisable for its double layers of lemon-coloured petals and one of a kind red twist frills in the centre.





Daffodil Actaea

Daffodil Actaea - Garden Express Australia

Daffodil Actaea are categorised in the Narcissus poeticus genus. It is believed that poeticus Daffodils are among the first Daffodils to ever be curated. These Daffodils are recognised by their creamy white single-layer petals and tiny delicate cups in the centre of the flower. The cups of a Daffodil Actaea are usually yellow with a red rim.




Daffodil Hawera

Daffodil Hawera Pkdafhaw - Garden Express Australia

Daffodil Hawera has petite golden flowers with swept back petals. While these blooms are a lot thinner and smaller than the blooms of other Daffodils, the amount of flowers is more abundant with at least five beautiful flowers per stem and multiple stems per bulb.





At Garden Express we stock many dormant Daffodil bulbs that are available in either single or multiple variety packs ready for you to plant either indoors or outdoors. Have a browse through our Daffodil collection and place your order.

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