Single Daffodil

Discussion in 'Earth Science' started by Orleander, Apr 23, 2009.

  1. Orleander OH JOY!!!! Valued Senior Member

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    How does a single daffodil grow in a forest? Every once in a while I see one and can never figure out how it got there.

    I think maybe a long gone pioneer used to live there and planted it. But daffodils spread, and there is just 1.
    Or an animal put the bulb there. But they are toxic and animals don't eat them.

    How did it get there??? :wallbang:
     
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  3. takandjive Killer Queen Registered Senior Member

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    My guess is the seeds stick to fur? Opossums or squirrels or something known to travel?
     
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  5. Orleander OH JOY!!!! Valued Senior Member

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    daffodils have no seeds. They are bulbs, like tulips.
     
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  7. takandjive Killer Queen Registered Senior Member

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    OOOH I was thinking of dandelions. Hmm. Is there a water source within 500 ft?
     
  8. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    First guess: buried by squirrels raiding a garden, forgotten or abandoned.

    Second guess: long ago garden plot, vanished homestead.

    Third guess: daffodils grow from seeds, originally, not bulbs. Birds defecate seeds, they get blown around, carried by water, fall from bouquets or other stores carried by people, etc etc.
     
  9. Orleander OH JOY!!!! Valued Senior Member

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    nope.
     
  10. Orleander OH JOY!!!! Valued Senior Member

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    I thought that as well, til I learned squirrels won't touch them. They are toxic. My tulips get dug up all the time and carted away by them. But they don't touch the daffodils.

    I thought that as well. LOL But there are big old trees everywhere. They would have had to tear them all down, build a house, plant a garden, move away, the house fall down, all the trees grow back, all the flowers die except 1. Daffodils spread

    I don't know of any animal that eats any part of a daffodil due to its toxicity. But the wind thing....

    Hmmm, thanks. Now I have a new theory to play with.
     
  11. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    Those big old trees are probably grown from seed since well after the Civil War. Most places in the eastern US near existing towns were gardened, pastured, or otherwise messed with before then. And daffodils are durable - they'll seed themselves in and propagate from bulbs for decades.

    There's a patch of lilies - day and tiger, mostly - near the edge of a wood in a park near me. It is surrounded by red oak and basswood and sugar maple trees of above average size for the area, easily described as "big old trees". It is the last remnant of a dairy farm from the 1890s - the only other obvious trace is an odd looking hollow or trench, recognizable as a feature of dairying operations from that era if you've seen others with the building adjacent. It takes careful searching to find a scrap of barb wire, the old garbage dump with its glass jar fragments, etc.

    And as far as toxicity - it's not that simple. Things like this happen in the real world:


     
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2009
  12. Orleander OH JOY!!!! Valued Senior Member

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    Thanks iceaura
     
  13. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    Large tunneling animals don't do very well in a forest. Too many big thick roots.
     
  14. Orleander OH JOY!!!! Valued Senior Member

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    good point Fraggle. Do you have a theory?
     
  15. Enmos Registered Senior Member

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    Of course daffodils have seed. All flowering plants produce seed, what else are the flowers for ?

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  16. Enmos Registered Senior Member

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    It could be a remnant of a larger patch.
    For example, if there used to be a large patch of daffodils at the edge of the forest and the forest caught up with it, the patch would be broken up.
    Patches of bulb flowers also tend to disperse outwards and the older bulbs in the middle might die off eventually.
     
  17. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    Neither do daffodils.

    Hence the likelihood that the flower is left over from long ago gardening, or a product of aberrant behavior by something - squirrel, gopher, woodchuck, even vole (for the seeds) etc - of the past.
     
  18. Orleander OH JOY!!!! Valued Senior Member

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    my daffodils grow fine around my trees. The bulb's root system is shallow.
     
  19. Enmos Registered Senior Member

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    He probably means that daffodils wouldn't do very good in a very shady forest.
     
  20. Orleander OH JOY!!!! Valued Senior Member

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    really? The shade isn't mentioned but the roots are.
     
  21. Enmos Registered Senior Member

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    Roots aren't mentioned either..
     
  22. Orleander OH JOY!!!! Valued Senior Member

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    :bugeye: uh, yes they are. But that's ok. You go ahead and tell me he meant shade.
     
  23. Enmos Registered Senior Member

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    I don't know if he meant shade, I just offered it as a possibility.

    Ice was responding to the bold part. Ice did not mention roots, Fraggle did.
     

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