Narcissus tazetta


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One of the most intense scents of flowers that one can meet in Crete is that of the famous Daffodils. The daffodils during the winter months adorned the vases of most houses in the villages and cities of Crete. Crete hosts 2-3 of 6 total species of narcissus growing in Greece, called Manousakia in Crete. The most common and well-known species is the Narcissus tazetta. Narcissus tazetta is among the tallest of the narcissi, and can grow to a height of up to 80 cm, 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.

Like the rest species of narcissus, it has one of the most intense and most recognizable scents from the flowers of the Mediterranean area. This unique flavor is the reason that today its populations have severly reduced, as it is collected for vases. The Daffodils are perennial plants with bulb and bloom in early winter but many times their flowering lasts until the spring months. The scientific name is the entire family of Narcissi derives according to the Greek mythology from the a attractive young man Narcissus, who was proud of its beauty. From there comes the word narcissism. The fragrance of daffodils is so intense that in a closed room they can even cause sedation. For that reason, when someone was about to sleep, the jar with the Daffodils was moved to another room.

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