The Backhouse Collection

My name is Caroline Thomson I am a direct descendent of William Backhouse the daffodil breeder, we are gathering together the remaining varieties of Backhouse Daffodils into a Heritage Museum Collection, hopefully this will prove to be a useful resource in the future for anyone interested in daffodils and bring pleasure to those who tend it.

Our web site is there is a list of all the bulbs we are still looking for.  I am asking for help at the moment from everyone involved in the world of daffodils to try and gather these fast disappearing varieties together, any help you could give we would be so grateful for.

At the moment I am seeking National Heritage status as this will highlight our profile and will hopefully alert more people to what we are trying to do. In order to achieve this status we need 75% of anything listed in the RHS Plantfinder. We are currently looking for CJ Backhouse and Gloria Mundi in order to achieve this. The only Scottish nursery Croft 16 who stock them tell me their order book for these varieties is already full for the next two years.

5 thoughts on “The Backhouse Collection”

  1. Best wishes from the Northern Group with your searches. It’s so easy for important collections to disappear, it’s good to know that you are acting before it’s too late. Please let us know if we can help further.

  2. Dear Wendy, thank you for your kind words they are much appreciated. If you or anyone reading this know of any gardens containing named varieties of Backhouse Daffodils please do get in touch as the Backhouse Daffodil Collection would be delighted to know of them by contacting me at

  3. Dear Ian, how interesting to hear you have Backhouse daffodil varieties in Backhouse Park Sunderland, do you know which of the Backhouse family bred them or if any of them are named varieties by any chance? Kind Regards, Caroline

  4. finding further information on this i am lead to believe that one William Backhouse (1807-69) bred narcissi at St. John’s Hall, Wolsingham in Weardale and made important developments in the breeding of daffodils.

    no doubt without further reading into it that would be Thomas backhouses’s source persumably .

    Intersting that Local Government Ombudsman is investigating how Sunderland University are selling off Ashburne House for luxury houses when Mr Backhouse left it to the People of Sunderland .



    Grid Reference:

    <> F. Green, 1995, A Guide to the Historic Parks and Gardens of Tyne and Wear, p 48-49

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