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NARCISSUS "VAN SION" AT MONEWDEN P . J. O . TRIST

double-form daffodil may be seen in large numbers on one of the fields at Monewden which is the subject of an agreement between the owners and the Suffolk Trust for Nature Conservation. This plant was first fiowered by Vincent Sion, a Fleming living in London in 1620 and before his death he gave his bulbs to George Wilmer. The plant was subsequently named "Wilmers Double Daffodil" and "Ajax Telamon" which was later changed to "Telamonius". More recently the name of "Telamonius Plenus" has also been used. THIS

Who planted the original stock in the parish of Monewden? Frederick William Martin took the Rookery Farm in 1899 from the Garnham family, who are believed to have held the farm for several generations. Gravestones in Monewden churchyard record Garnham burials from 1830-57 and Narcissus "Van Sion" can be seen growing on three of the graves. On the First Church Meadow at Rookery Farm, there are many hundreds of plants. This meadow and two others, comprising a total of nine acres, have never been ploughed or sprayed and have only had a light dressing of fertiliser on one or two occasions. Hay is taken in mid-July and there has been no aftermath grazing since 1962. The farm is a mile from the church via a footpath. The Church Field, First and Second Church Meadows are all named on a farm map dated 1656. The reason for these names is lost. This plant naturalises freely and this is borne out at Rookery Farm. The Church Field has been in arable for the past seventy years, but ten plants were seen in 1973 to have found their way on to ditch bank. In the Second Church Meadow, which lies to the east of the First Church Meadow, almost 200 plants fiowered on the north, west, and south boundaries, on the ditch bank or on the hedge brew. This field was formerly in grass and is said to have only had a few daffodils, which may have spread from the large population in the First Church Meadow. It was ploughed out of grass in 1962. To the south, several small colonies were flowering on the ditch banks in the two adjacent fields, both of which were in grass up to 1962 and previously had no daffodils in the out-field. To the east of Church Field a few plants are on a ditchside on the neighbouring Cherry Tree Farm and as would be expected, there are several "Van Sion's" in the Rookery farmyard, which still has its rookery. At the end of March-early April, the fiowers in the First Church Meadow are a wonderful sight. They, and other interesting


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plants, have been the joy of several generations of farmers at the Rookery. It is fortunate that their pattern of farming has proved to be perfect conservation. P. J. O. Trist, O.B.E., B.A.Hons., M.R.A.C., F.L.S., 28 High Street, Balsham, Carnbs.

Glovers,

Narcissus 'Van Sion' at Monewden  
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