Daffodil Question

Asked May 9, 2018, 8:01 PM EDT

It's that time of year again when daffodil flowers wither & we are left to wait out the return to earth of the leaves. Some of our daffodil clumps are in the middle of other flowering plants & it can get quite messy awaiting out the process. I was wondering, will it hurt next year's flowering if I cut the leaves back about half way or less? I have already cut a few clumps but before I proceed, I thought I better check with you. Thanks!

Howard County Maryland

1 Response

The daffodil bulbs need the foliage to carry on photosynthesis and produce carbohydrates to store in the bulbs so you have flowers next spring. If you cut off the foliage when it is green, you are limiting the amount of energy that gets stored, and weakening next spring's blooms. Eventually it will stop flowering.

Ideally, you leave the foliage until it yellows. The longer you leave it and the more you leave, the healthier your bulbs will be. Until then, tuck it down the best you can to hide it with the other flowers.