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Rijnveld’s Early Sensation


‘Rijnveld’s Early Sensation’ seems to be something of a secret (despite the name). It’s just a yellow trumpet daffodil. But I think it deserves more attention.

“This two-toned yellow daffodil wouldn’t win a ribbon, but it has won a place in our hearts,” says Brent and Becky’s catalogue. Since I don’t move in show circles, I don’t know what they consider to a good daffodil. And to be honest, I hadn’t even noticed Rijnveld’s Early Sensation was two-toned – unless they mean the green streaks which linger from the opened bud, making a green star.

If you like the star effect, I found the deepest-colored ones came from the just-opened flowers I picked and put in a vase inside; sun seems to fade them a bit, though not entirely.

While Rijnveld’s Early Sensation is early, this year, its first year of planting, it has been beat out by my old established Dutch Master.  The first year bulbs are planted, they tend to come out later than they do in subsequent years, so next year Rijnveld may come before Dutch Master. (It may do that anyway; the number of flowers from Dutch Master has drastically dropped this year, not my previous experience. Maybe the calcium treatments I’m giving all my Mediterranean bulbs will help.)

While my Rijnveld’s Early Sensation opened in late February and are blooming in early March, Brent and Becky, who are in Virginia, say that this daffodil often blooms in January for them. Once it opened in December. And they report that it doesn’t mind snow a bit, something I can testify to.  Scheepers, which also carries Rijnveld, says the flower dates from 1943, and that it’s “the earliest to flower by two weeks, with several flowers per bulb.” The difference in bloom time could mean B&B and Scheepers have different strains of Rijnveld; I haven’t noticed any multiple flowers from my own bulbs, for instance, but it’s early days yet.

Of course the difference in bloom time could simply be a climate difference: there’s a lot of ground to cover between the Netherlands (where Scheepers gets their bulbs) or Connecticut (where Scheepers is located in the U.S.) and Brent and Becky’s trial gardens in Virginia (which does have cold winters, but not as cold as in the north).

Despite its 1943 date, I haven’t found Rijnveld’s in my heirloom (or just old) books and catalogues, unlike its early-blooming yellow-trumpet kindred, Golden Spur and Narcissus obvallaris (the Tenby daffodil). Rijnveld’s isn’t  statuesque: only 12 to 14 inches (about 30 to 35 cm); it’s not unusual (except possibly in its time of bloom). The scent is pleasing, but mild. I suppose, among all the other, showier daffodils, this one just gets lost, so you don’t see it in most books or catalogues. But I love Rijnveld’s little snouts and green stars. I think more gardens should have an Early Sensation.



P.S. If this post has gotten you interested in Rijnveld’s Early Sensation, check out Fairegarden’s  post on how it has colonized and spread in her garden.


{ 12 comments… add one }

  • Racquel March 5, 2009, 7:37 pm

    What a beauty, I love the stripes on the back of the petals!

  • Pomona Belvedere March 6, 2009, 2:48 pm

    Aren’t they cool? I don’t remember seeing another daffodil that does this – but maybe others have.

  • tina March 12, 2009, 9:49 am

    I just love it when I do a search on a plant and find good info on a blog-especially one I know. Great info! Especially the year of introduction.

  • Pomona Belvedere March 12, 2009, 4:05 pm

    I write this kind of post with just that kind of plant search in mind. Glad it worked for you – and thanks for letting me know that it did.

  • Frances March 13, 2009, 2:45 am

    Hi Pomona, I am so happy to see that you have this little gem. The two toned effect comes with age of the flower it seems. They begin more solid yellow then the outer petals lighten up. Hard cold has laid them flat out on the ground in bloom, and when it warms back up, they also spring back up. I have spread them all over, while in bloom to see where they can be used to best show off the early yellow dots on the hillside. I have not seen the multiple flowers either though, but maybe have not examined them closely enough, preferring to view them from afar. They are indeed two weeks or more ahead of the next early bloomer, Jetfire, here.

  • Daffodil Planter March 14, 2009, 1:55 pm

    My longtime Rijnveld’s are usually first by a week or two, but this year the old Dutch Masters beat them easily. Odd. Wonderful detail here about a Narcissus that should be grown by ALL.

  • Jan (Thanks For Today) March 9, 2010, 3:43 pm

    I am north of Brent and Becky, and we had a very cold winter here. It was pretty cold& snowy all over VA, though. I wonder how the Rijnveld’s did this year for them? I must have a later-blooming variety, because they didn’t break through the ground until first of March. But usually even mine are up in January, blooming in Feb. I’m going to add Rijnveld’s to my list for fall purchases, and place them around my house where I can see them from the windows. I could really use a little color early in the year when it’s feeling so bleak.

  • Frances March 9, 2010, 5:08 pm

    This harder than normal winter, Rijvveld has not yet bloomed, more than a month late, although the buds are beginning on a couple of the older plantings. It will still be the first daff to open here. I am wondering how the other bulbs will fare, will they all be late, or will there be more overlap as the weather warms up?

  • Helen at Toronto Gardens March 10, 2010, 5:47 am

    It breaks my heart that daffodils are unhappy in my garden. I’ve planted so many with dreams of drifts… only to see them quickly dwindle in the dry shade. I am enjoying all of yours, however. Happy dreaming.

  • Karen B July 30, 2015, 2:32 am

    I put some of these in last Fall. As mentioned here, they didn’t beat some of the more established daffodils in being the first bloomers, and they began blooming about 1 week later than the snow crocuses that I put in at the same time. But what won my heart is that they continued blooming for about a month — and I also liked that they’re a bit shorter than some daffodils, so good for my rock garden and under the weeping cherry. They also handled a late April snow with grace and some unusually warm days that did my tulips in.

    I’m planning to put more in, but need to find a new company, as the one I ordered from last year isn’t carrying them.

    I’m eager to see how they do in their 2nd season, here on the shores of Lake Ontario. Last winter was extremely cold — especially the Spring. So, by March and April, I’m desperate for something blooming.

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