Narcissus tazetta

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Narcissus tazetta in Israel
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Monocots
Order: Asparagales
Family: Amaryllidaceae
Subfamily: Amaryllidoideae
Genus: Narcissus
N. tazetta
Binomial name
Narcissus tazetta

Narcissus tazetta (paperwhite, bunch-flowered narcissus, bunch-flowered daffodil,[1] Chinese sacred lily, cream narcissus, joss flower, polyanthus narcissus) is a perennial ornamental plant that grows from a bulb. Cultivars of N. tazetta include 'Paperwhite', 'Grand Soleil d'Or' and 'Ziva', which are popularly used for forcing indoors, as is the form of N. tazetta known as Chinese Sacred Lily.[2][3][4]


Narcissus tazetta (the mountain ecotype) in Israel.

Narcissus tazetta is amongst the tallest of the narcissi, and can grow to a height of up to 80 cm,[5] with thin, flat leaves up to 40 cm long and 15 mm wide. Umbels have as many as 8 flowers, white with a yellow corona.[6][7][8][9][10]



Six subspecies are accepted by the World Checklist of Selected Plant Families:[11]


Narcissus tazetta contains a fragrant compound found in only a few other plants, including roses and Acnistus arborescens, called orcinol dimethyl ether, which is almost undetectable to the human nose. Experiments with honeybees have shown they can readily detect it.[17]


Narcissus tazetta is a widespread species, native to the Mediterranean region from Portugal to Turkey. It is also naturalized across the Middle East, Central Asia, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Nepal and Bhutan, as well as the Canary Islands, China (Fujian, Zhejiang), Japan, Australia, Korea, Norfolk Island, New Zealand, Bermuda, Mexico and the United States (Oregon, California, Texas, Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia)[18] and South America.[19]


Narcissus tazetta is grown commercially for its essential oil, mostly in southern France. An interspecies hybrid, with Narcissus poeticus, is also grown for its essential oil.[20]


  1. ^ "BSBI List 2007". Botanical Society of Britain and Ireland. Archived from the original (xls) on 2015-01-25. Retrieved 2014-10-17.
  2. ^ Judith Farr; Louise Carter (31 October 2005). The Gardens Of Emily Dickinson. Harvard University Press. p. 252. ISBN 978-0-674-01829-7. Retrieved 25 July 2012.
  3. ^ Tovah Martin; Brooklyn Botanic Garden (1 March 2000). Old-Fashioned Flowers: Classic Blossoms to Grow in Your Garden. Brooklyn Botanic Garden. p. 14. ISBN 978-1-889538-15-0. Retrieved 28 July 2012.
  4. ^ H. L. Li (3 December 2002). Chinese Flower Arrangement. Courier Dover Publications. p. 48. ISBN 978-0-486-42316-6. Retrieved 28 July 2012.
  5. ^ Michaux, Jean (2009). "Narcissus tazetta". La Flore. Académie de Besançon. Retrieved 26 November 2014.
  6. ^ Linnaeus, Carl von. 1753. Species Plantarum 1: 290 Narcissus tazetta
  7. ^ Haworth, Adrian Hardy. 1819. Supplementum Plantarum Succulentarum 142, Hermione tazetta
  8. ^ Rafinesque, Constantine Samuel. 1848. Flora Telluriana 4: 21 Jonquilla tazetta
  9. ^ Rouy, Georges C. Chr. 1912. Flore de France 13: 40 Narcissus linnaeanus
  10. ^ Sessé y Lacasta, Martín & Mociño, José Mariano. 1894. Flora Mexicana ed. 2: 85 Pancratium tazetta
  11. ^ Search for "Narcissus tazetta", World Checklist of Selected Plant Families, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, retrieved 2012-12-26
  12. ^ Baker, John Gilbert. 1888. Handbook of the Amarylldaceae p 9
  13. ^ a b Baker, John Gilbert. 1888. Handbook of the Amarylldaceae p 8
  14. ^ Flora of China v 24 p 269, Narcissus tazetta var. chinensis, common name 水仙 shui xian
  15. ^ Masamune, Genkei & Yanagihara, Masayuki. 1941. Transactions of the Natural History Society of Formosa 31: 329.
  16. ^ Baker, John Gilbert. 1888. Handbook of the Amarylldaceae p 7
  17. ^ Natalia Dudareva; Eran Pichersky (27 March 2006). Biology of Floral Scent. CRC Press. p. 95. ISBN 978-0-8493-2283-9.
  18. ^ Kew Checklist of Selected Plant Families
  19. ^ Chile Flora
  20. ^ Nigel Groom (30 June 1997). The New Perfume Handbook. Springer. pp. 225–226. ISBN 978-0-7514-0403-6. Retrieved 28 July 2012.





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