So variable in size that measurements are almost meaningless (height from less than 4cm to more than 10cm): many forms have been described. Leaves green, one to three per bulb, by l-3mm wide, usually shorter than stem, erect or spreading. Stem erect, lightly striate. Pedicel 4mm long. Flowers yellow (tepals sometimes green or green tipped on opening) ascending, to 2cm in diameter or more, tube yellow or with green streaks.
4mm long, tepals very narrow, deflexed to patent. Corona extremely variable from narrow to petunioid, with margin from entire to very crenate. Anthers uniseriate, at right angles to filaments. Style curved upwards at outer end, overtopping anthers. Wet meadows, mountain slopes and rock pockets in acid soil. Much of Spain and Portugal, High Atlas and Anti-Atlas, Morocco. N.b. var. citrinus differs from type in having citron coloured flowers, variable in size. South-western France, northern and central Spain, northern Portugal. Some forms from Picos de Europa almost evergreen. N.b. var. conspicuus covers robust spring blooming plants with erect leaves and flowers about 3-3.5cm long by 2cm across in varying shades of yellow, though usually deep yellow in cultivation. N.b. var. graellsii is similar to var. citrinus but flowers greenish white to pale citron. Sierra de Guadarrama and Castille, Spain. is162 N.b. var. nivalis has up to seven leaves per bulb, to 12cm long by 5mm wide. The flowers are to 3.6cm across, deep yellow, the tepals often with green tips, the style long exserted. Morocco (Atlas Mountains) to Portugal. N.b. var. obesus; see N. obesus. N.b. var. pallidus has leaves up to 20cm in length and coronas about 3.4cm across in shades of deep to pale primrose yellow, late winter. Atlas Mountains. is162 N.b. subsp. praecox is rather like var. citrinus, but comes from Morocco and blooms in winter. N.b. var. serotinus is difficult to distinguish from var. conspicuus, but said to have recurved tipped leaves to 4mm wide, and flowers to 4cm or more in diameter. Western Portugal. [Pl.288]
Joint Rock: Joint Rock Awards, AGS Kent Show, 21 March 2015