Narcissus tazetta are bulbous perenial plants grown for their fresh coloured graceful scented flowers. This plant has thin, flat leaves up to 40cm (16 inch) long and 15mm (0.6 inch) wide.
Narcissus tazetta are bunch flowered (polyanthus) types of Narcissus and are most suitable species of this genus for use as indoor plants. Umbels have as many as 8 flowers, white with a yellow corona. The flowers have a cup (trumpet) shaped corona that are sometimes very much reduced in size and are backed by 6 petals.
Planting in potting mixture:
For growing Narcissus tazetta in potting mixture or bulb fibre use either waterproof containers (such as decorative bowls) or pots or pans with drainage holes. Plant several bulbs together, each bulb half in and half above the fibre or potting mixture which may be either soil or peat based. Make sure that the fibre or potting mixture is moist, not sodden, before planting. Store the container in the coolest possible position and in the dark. If it is impossible to provide such outdoor treatment, enclose the potted bulbs in black plastic bags and place the bags in a cool position.
Examine the container once or twice during the nest few weeks. If the potting mixture appears to be drying out, add just enough water to keep it evenly moist. When the bulbs have made 8cm (3 inch) of top growth and flower buds have cleared the necks, move the container gradually (over a period of about a week) into a brightly lit position. Once acclimatised the plants need as much as direct sunlight as they get.
Outdoors Narcissus tazetta plants bloom in late winter or early spring. They are not as hardy as the majority plants of this genus and will not do well in gardens with very cold winters.
Remove flower stems at the base of the plants with hand clippers after the flowers fade. This tidies up the garden and prevents the plants from using their energy to produce seeds. They will save energy in their bulbs and will help them to produce prolific blooms again the next year. Do not cut back the plants until the foliage begins to fade (about 6 weeks), typically in summer when the bulb goes dormant. Use pruning shears and snip the foliage to the ground. As long as a Narcissus tazetta is green, it is still photosynthesizing sunlight into energy, which is stored in the bulb for the next growing season, so do not prune early.
Narcissus tazetta is best grown in a warm sunny corner with shelter from cold winds. Place Narcissus tazetta bulbs in full sun so the flowers and foliage receive at east six hours of sunlight a day, preferably in the morning with afternoon shade.
Narcissus tazetta plants prefer a deep rather stiff soil but succeeds in most soils and situations. They grow well in heavy clay soils, but prefer an alkaline soil with a pH between 7 and 8. These plants can live in regular well-tilled garden soil, although, they grow best in well-drained loamy ground. The flowers are not so long-lived on light land as of those that are grown on loamy soil. On ground containing a lot of clay, sand should be mixed in freely along with compost or other organic matter.
Early through middle fall is the best time to plant the bulbs in the garden. Their size determines the depth at which they should be planted. Large bulbs should be covered no less than 10-13cm (4-5 inch), medium sizes should have a covering of 8-10cm (3-4 inch) and smaller ones with 5-8cm (2-3 inch). One of the most common mistakes is to plant them too close to the surface. Narcissus tazetta bulbs can be left undisturbed for many years until they become so crowded that they fail to bloom abundantly. Usually, they need to be lifted at the end of 3 or 4 years. When they are planted in grass or woodland, they should be set further apart so that they can be left undisturbed for a longer period of time. The best flowers are obtained by lifting and replanting them annually or in alternate years, as soon as the leaves have died down.
Water Narcissus tazetta from fall until spring while it is actively growing and when rain is insufficient. Keep the soil moist by watering it with 3cm (1 inch) of water when the soil is dry to the touch 5 to 8cm (2-3 inch) deep.
Apply low-nitrogen, high-potassium fertiliser after blooming if bloom performance was poor. Feed Narcissus tazetta with a bulb fertilizer or an all-purpose fertiliser after they finish blooming and the flowers have faded. Sprinkle the fertilizer around the foliage and, because nutrient rates differ among fertilisers, use the recommended rate as stated on the package label. Repeat every two weeks for two months for a total of four feedings; however, do not fertilise after the foliage turns yellow.