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FNA | Family List | FNA Vol. 26 | Liliaceae | Narcissus

4. Narcissus papyraceus Ker Gawler, Bot. Mag. 24: plate 947. 1806.

Paper-white narcissus

Bulbs ovoid, 4–6 × 3–5 cm, tunic dark brown. Leaves 4; blade flat, keeled, 20–35(–45) cm × 6–15(–20) mm, glaucous. Inflorescences umbellate, 5–15(–20)-flowered, 25–35 cm; spathe pale brown, 4–6 cm, papery. Flowers strongly fragrant; perianth 3–5 cm wide; perianth tube 1.5–2 cm, gradually tapering to base; distinct portions of tepals spreading to reflexed, white, narrowly ovate to oblanceolate, 1–2.5 × 0.8–1 cm, apex acute; corona white, cup-shaped, 2–4 × 5–8 mm, apex crenulate to ruffled; 3 short stamens included in perianth tube, 3 longer stamens and style exserted into mouth of corona; pedicel of variable length, to 6 cm. 2n = 22.

Flowering winter--spring. Roadsides, waste places; 0--100 m; introduced; Calif., La.; w Europe (se France, sw Spain, Portugal), Mediterranean region; n Africa; expected naturalized elsewhere.

Although Narcissus papyraceus and N. tazetta are distinct and easily distinguished as fresh specimens, they are very difficult to separate in herbarium material. Many early authors considered the two synonymous, making literature references to N. tazetta unreliable.


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