The birth month flower for December is the Narcissus. There are several meanings for Narcissus which include conceit and self love. The narcissus or commonly called daffodil is a tall standing single stemmed flower that can grow up to 24 inches tall. It has slender flat strap like leaves that can be 3 inches to 20 inches tall. The narcissus is a late winter to early spring bloomer. The flowers can range in style from single or double trumpet shaped and come in a variety of colors such as orange, peach, pink, red, white, yellow and bicoloured. They can do well in Zones 4-9 hardy. Soil type should be sandy loam with high average moisture, good drainage and high – medium fertility such as 5.5 – 6.5 pH.
The Narcissus does well in garden beds, borders, containers, and slopes. They look great in cottage, shade and woodland gardens. They are excellent cutting flowers and are popular in early spring arrangements. They also have a resistance to deer, rodents and diseases. They are easy to grow.
Narcissus are bulbs, and can be divided easily, these bulbs produce offsets which can be carefully separated from the mother bulb. Bulbs are ready to lift after they flower and the foliage dies back. Remove the bulbs from the ground with a spade fork and discard bulbs that are damaged. Shake any soil from the bulbs and have them dry out for a few days on a wire rack in a dry, warm and well – ventilated area. Dust the narcissus bulbs with a fungicide to prevent any mold developing and store them in a dry garden peat moss or cleaned, washed and dried sand. The best area to store the bulbs would be with humidity of 25 percent or less and temperatures of 45 to 50 degrees F (7 – 10 C), such as in an attached garage or cool basement.