Springtime in Connecticut conjures up images of rainy days filled with plants bursting into bloom that hint at the promise of sweet summer days. The vivid yellow of the early blooming daffodil is a simple reminder that the cold snow-laden days of winter are finally behind us. As the daffodil gently pushes through the ground to announce its perfectly timed arrival, we too push aside the darkness of the preceding season and emerge again, ready to turn our faces toward the warmth of the sun and allow ourselves to grow.
Daffodils are synonymous with spring and symbolize rebirth and new beginnings. Folklore confirms the association of the daffodil with a sign of winter’s end and marks it as a symbol of luck, prosperity, remembrance and happiness in many cultures around the world.
Legend has it that if you discover the first daffodil blooming of the season in Wales, for example, wealth will be bestowed upon you for the next twelve months. According to legend, daffodils are thought to have bloomed the first time during Christ’s resurrection and have since been known as the “Lent Lily." Chinese legend says that if you force a daffodil bulb to bloom in the New Year, it will bring you good luck to your home.
Each spring in March and April the lawn of the Historic Denison Homestead in Mystic comes alive with hundreds of daffodils. The cheerful blooms brighten the lawn and are a sure sign of spring in full bloom. The daffodils were planted in honor and memory of Nancy Ryon Richartz of Stonington. The blooms honor a friend’s love and gardens and her legacy of community service.
The blooms are at their peak in early April, but if you hurry, you can still take advantage of their stunning beauty. Drive by to enjoy the view or call the museum to schedule a tour at 860-536-9248.
Fun Blooming Tales
- Originating in the Mediterranean, the daffodil is believed to have come to England by way of the Romans. The word dates back in the English language to the 1500s.
- If you step on a daffodil, bad luck will follow you.
- In Germany, daffodils are called Osterglocken, or Easter bells.
- The Druids consider the daffodil their national flower, symbolizing purity.
- Medieval Arabs used the juice of the daffodil as a cure for baldness and the Arabians used it as an aphrodisiac.
- The original name for the daffodil was Affodyl, meaning that which comes early.
- The Greek god Narcissus (the botanical name for the daffodil) was blessed with eternal youth and beauty.
- A gift of a daffodil is a sign of love, joy, hope and respect.
- Daffodils are a symbol of the Cancer Society, giving people hope.