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Last Updated: Friday, 3 March 2006, 10:50 GMT
Absent daffs mean event delayed
Click here to see how the drive should look in March (Pictures courtesy of National Trust)

The unusually cold spell is being blamed for the postponement of a well-known annual celebration of daffodils in Cornwall.

The National Trust has put back its Daffodil Week at Cotehele because of the absence of flowering daffodils.

It attracts thousands of visitors from all over the UK keen to see the display of more than 200 varieties.

Trust staff estimate that spring is about four weeks late and the daffodils are not even in bud.

The Cotehele estate, near Saltash, is famed for its array of daffodils and used to grow the blooms commercially and this is the first time the event has been delayed.

'Really struggling'

Cornwall, usually regarded as the UK's mildest county, has been affected by the unusually cold recent weather of heavy snow and hard frosts.

David Bouch, the trust's head gardener at Cotehele, said: "Usually at this time of year the daffodils are in bloom and the garden is full of spring colour, but daffodils are really struggling this year."

And Mr Bouch said it was not just an issue affecting Cotehele.

"I have been having great problems finding flowering daffodils for our cut display," he said.

"I've only been able to find them flowering in the Isles of Scilly."

The daffodil event, which was planned from 11 to 16 March, has been moved back by a month to start on 8 April.

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