PHEASANT'S-EYE

POET'S DAFFODIL

Narcissus poeticus

Onion & Garlic Family [Alliaceae]  
Formerly in: Lily Family [Liliaceae] then in Amaryllis Family for a while.

month8apr month8april month8may

status
statusZarchaeophyte
 
flower
flower8bicolour
 
flower
flower8white
 
inner
inner8yellow
 
inner
inner8orange
 
morph
morph8actino
 
petals
petalsZ6
 
stem
stem8round
 
smell
smell8perfume smell8jasmine smell8hyacinth small8narcissus oil
perfume
toxicity
toxicityZlowish
 

28th April 2010,Craven Arms, Shropshire. Photo: © RWD
With long linear greyish leaves as tall as the flowers. Here growing in dampish ground next to a brook amongst Dogs Mercury and Lesser Celandine. Single flowers atop each stem. [Some other short-corona-type species are much shorter with multiple flower-heads atop each stalk].


28th April 2010,Craven Arms, Shropshire. Photo: © RWD
The six petals are usually white, but can be off-white cream, or yellowish in places. The yellow corona is very short. Authentic Pheasants Eye has a red-rimmed corona, and not deep orange as in this example.


28th April 2010,Craven Arms, Shropshire. Photo: © RWD
Petals are separated by gaps and do not overlap until near the centre. In this sub-species the white petals are sun-blushed lemon yellow near the centre imparting a pleasant glowing appearance.


28th April 2010,Craven Arms, Shropshire. Photo: © RWD
Corola very short. Note the paper-like bracts common on most daffodils.


28th April 2010,Craven Arms, Shropshire. Photo: © RWD
Some minute bugs populate the flower.


28th April 2010,Craven Arms, Shropshire. Photo: © RWD
The anthers and styles.


28th April 2010,Craven Arms, Shropshire. Photo: © RWD
Rear of flower-head.


Uniquely identifiable characteristics (Apart from distinguishing between sub-species).

Distinguishing Feature : A white daffodil with a very short central corona which has a red or orange rim.

No relation to : Pheasant's Eye (Adonis annua) a very rare if not extinct wild flower with the same common name but which belongs to the Buttercup Family and not the Amaryllis Family.

The Pheasant's Eye type of Daffodils have a very short central corona (the trumpet). There are many subspecies, the majority more likely to be found growing in parks and gardens than in the wild.

PHENANTHRIDINE ALKALOIDS

The powerful anti-cancer properties of Pheasant's Eye was already known to Greek philosopher Hippocrates, who used Narcissus Oil for treating uterine tumours, a practice which was common later in the Middle Ages. It is likely that the constituents Narciclasine, Pancratistatin and their congeners are the most important factors contributing to the anti-cancer properties of this oil. A great many other chemically very similar analogues are also present. Pancratistine is a phenanthridine alkaloid.


Narciclasine, a phenanthridine alkaloid, is responsible for the so-called vase-effect whereby introducing Narcissus bulbs into the same vase as other plants (particularly Roses) leads to the reduction in uptake of water by the Rose, and its subsequent withering. Both Pancratistatin and Narciclassine suppress growth in other plants, such is the competition between plants. Lycorine, present in Wild Daffodil also possesses similar growth inhibitory effects on other plants. These compounds inhibit growth via differing biochemical pathways.

Narcissidine is a phenanthridine alkaloid similar to Lycorine, another amaryllidaceae alkaloid.

Ambelline is a phenanthridine alkaloid, one of the amarillidaceae alkaloids with a resemblance ti the chemical structure of both Haemanthamine and to Galanthamine, both of which are also phenanthridine amarillidaceae alkaloids.

Pancracine is a phenanthridine alkaloid, one of the amarillidaceae alkaloids present in a wide range of Amarillidaceae Family plants.

Other alkaloids also present in Pheasants Eye include Galanthine, Homolycorine, Lycorenine, Nartazine, Poetaminine and Pluviine.


  Narcissus poeticus  ⇐ Global Aspect ⇒ Alliaceae  

Distribution
 family8Daffodil family8Amaryllidaceae family8alliaceae family8onion family8garlic

 BSBI maps
genus8Narcissus
Narcissus
(Daffodils)

PHEASANT'S-EYE

POET'S DAFFODIL

Narcissus poeticus

Onion & Garlic Family [Alliaceae]  
Formerly in: Lily Family [Liliaceae] then in Amaryllis Family for a while.

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