06.03.2014 Fresh as a Daisy

Just a little something from the backyard before work this morning.  These just showed up a few years back and I mow around them, but of course, until they are spent.  Our neighborhood was a large farm before development (our yard, I believe, was part of a pasture) and we have a few wildflowers that were here before us and will most likely continue to be here after us.  I am sure there will be a few more backyard posts before the summer has passed.  Soon I will join Andrew with our “Insects on Parade”. 🙂

The Oxeye Daisy (Chrysanthemum leucanthemum) is not a native to the US but, to me at least, it is a most welcome alien plant.Oxeye-Daisy-060314-600WebAdded two more:Oxeye-Daisy-2-060314-600Web Oxeye-Daisy-3-060314-600Web

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About Steve Gingold

I am a Nature Photographer with interests in all things related. Water, flowers, insects and fungi are my main interests but I am happy to photograph wildlife and landscapes and all other of Nature's subjects.
This entry was posted in Closeup Photography, Flora, Nature Photography, Western Massachusetts, Wildflowers and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to 06.03.2014 Fresh as a Daisy

  1. Andrew says:

    There are really intricate patterns to the eye of the daisy. You are fortunate to have old pasture as your yard, Steve. I think ours is builders rubble.

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    • The first house my family owned was part of a development built on an old landfill, Andrew. We’d find some amazing things when digging our garden.
      I love looking at the pattern in a daisy’s floral disk. All the tiny flowers seem to do a dizzying dance.

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  2. Lottie Nevin says:

    Your backyard sounds rather enchanting. How lovely that it used to be pasture. If the Oxeye’s are not native to the US, I wonder how they turned up there? Stunning photo, Steve.

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    • Thanks, Lottie. It’s made all the more so by Mary Beth’s efforts in the gardens.
      The aliens get here in a few ways. People buy plants which escape in one manner or another. Or sometimes seeds either travel as stowaways in cargo or mixed in with other species. I suppose it is also possible that some could travel distances on the winds or migrant bird express.

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      • Some 19th century farmers condemned the Oxeye Daisy as a “vile weed … that has rightly been outlawed in most state weed laws.” An Ohio botanist, A.D. Selby, complained in 1897 that the Oxeye “is found a bad pest in many counties.”

        _Chrysanthemum leucanthemum_ is native to Europe and parts of Asia, growing in the wild in grasslands throughout the British Isles. Popular among British gardeners as an ornamental species, it migrated to North America as a garden plant early in the 19th century. Some folk just couldn’t leave it behind! Chaucer, Shelley, Wordsworth, and other lyrical dreamers found the Oxeye and its cousins charmingly beautiful.

        Landscapers and some gardeners don’t like this pretty flower because it grows with great density, crowding out and eventually slaying other species. It must be pulled up by the deep roots to eradicate it. Who would dare use herbicides?

        Farmers don’t like the Oxeye, aka the whiteweed, because their cattle and sheep don’t care for the taste of the Oxeye and leave it be in the pasture — most of the time. It can be challenging to dairy farmers because every now ‘n then a hungry herd of milk cows will dine upon the Oxeye, imparting a bitter taste to the milk they produce.

        Steve: What lens for the 8-Oxeye bunch shot? What angle? What time of day? Love the clarity and form of the ‘bouquet.’

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      • You are the very fount of knowledge, researched or what comes naturally, Eb. I really enjoy the history and tidbits you impart in your posts and, in this case, comments. I knew from whence they came, but that they are reviled is news. I have never seen them take over a field but have seen a profusion on occasion. To me that is the height of floral beauty but I can understand the problems that can come with that.
        The lens was my trusty 180 macro at about 45° from @6 feet. It was ballpark 5:30 am just before the sun broke the horizon and got the eddies flowing. I was just out looking at them 4:30 pm, but it is pretty breezy and I am not one for flowers swaying blurry through the frame (aka motion blur)….not that there is anything wrong with that. 🙂
        Thank you very much, Eb.

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  3. I just added two more from yesterday morning.

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  4. Just Rod says:

    I live the group of 8 plus 2.
    We get wild daisies growing in our so called lawn at the cabin. I also mow around the emergent daisies until their flowering is finished.
    So simple but so beautiful.

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    • Thanks, Rod. It would be a shame to mow down such beauty just to have a “nice” lawn. During the Spring our lawn is a patchwork of different flowers and grass. In addition to the daisies we get bluets, various violets and now fireweed/hawkweed is moving in. On an old wood chip pile are some nice cinquefoils. My next door neighbor slimes his lawn with some kind of commercial chemical spray. Who wants a monoculture? I’d much rather have plantains and clover mixed in with numerous other plants and just a hint of timothy. 🙂

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      • Just Rod says:

        LOL. I’m with you Steve. I love the moss most if the year and the bees love the clover. Our daughter has a friend who can find four leaf clovers really quickly. She would sit on our green patch and within ten minutes would have at least four leaf clovers.
        We also get beautiful tiny violets and some yellow flowers I haven’t yet identified. I miss the buttercups from England though. They were my favourite growing up.

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      • AAuggghhh! I forgot the buttercups, Rod. Thanks for reminding me. 🙂 We need to shave our beards so we can tell whether or not we like butter. 😀

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  5. I’ve always liked these daisies but for some reason I’ve planted them about 3 times over the course of many years and they have never flourished and eventually croaked. Don’t reckon I gave them them the right places to grow. I’ve been told by many people and no I’m not bragging that I have a green thumb but- a number of plants have not grown very well for me. It is so true that everything needs the right environment to prosper.

    These photos are lovely and I’m glad that you save the daisies by mowing around them. These daisies are sold in several nurseries in my town.

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    • Thank you, Yvonne. I try to avoid several flowers in the lawn. Some are just impossible to save without just plain not mowing. We have neighbors that mow and trim and feed their lawns, but ours is a more natural lawn with all sorts of “weeds”.
      As much as I enjoy them, I was surprised with Ebenezer’s information about their lack of popularity in certain places.
      We have never been able to successfully grow Delphiniums or Poppies. No idea why.

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      • Our lawns at 3 Dog Acres are like Steve’s …. I leave un-mowed patches everywhere to see what emerges, and as a result we have gorgeous outbursts of daisy-like fleabane, towering swirls of Queen Anne’s lace, thin and elegant stalks of bluestem, late-summer goldenrod, pokesalat, sumac …. so many wondrous expressions of nature’s bounty mixed in with the swaths of mowed clover, rye, fescue, onion, and crab grasses.

        As for Steve’s troubles with Poppies and Yvonne’s difficulty with daisies, it’s one of those mysteries of affinity that afflict each of us in the gardens. I’m sure Steve and Yvonne can grow other species with great success — species that baffle other gardeners. Each of us puts a special magic on certain plants that bedevil others. I’ve never done well with vincas, zinnias, or blackjack saplings. Every one of my 7 pawpaw saplings died this spring, but at a party on Friday night I listened to a fellow gardener praise her young pawpaws. All the while, some of the plants that thrive under my care are consistent thorns-in-the-sides of others I know. We each have our own way of dancin’ ! –Ebenezer

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