Daffodils at Cotehele

Mother and child in daffodils at Cotehele, Cornwall

Delight in the variety of daffodils across the estate.

Long season

The daffodils at Cotehele give a real character to the place at this time of year. From mid-February they start to emerge and continue to flower right through into May. 

You can see the daffodils flowering all over the estate, but particularly across from the Barn Restaurant, in the meadow behind the house and in the old orchard. These areas start to change colour from the silvery/blue of the daffodil foliage to sunny yellows and whites as the flowers start to open. 

Daffodils near the Barn Restaurant at Cotehele
Daffodils growing in front of the house at Cotehele, Cornwall
Daffodils near the Barn Restaurant at Cotehele

Market gardens

The daffodils at Cotehele are mainly old varieties, some dating back to 1620. They were important in the market garden history of the Tamar Valley as a cash crop. Many were picked as surplus produce, which then became an international industry. Growers sent them to flower markets as far as Covent Garden in London. 

In the eighteenth century, a boat similar to the Shamrock on Cotehele Quay was used to take the flowers to Plymouth. By the nineteenth century the railway at Calstock was used. The flowers were sent open not like today, when they are sent in tight buds.