Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Nothing Humble about These Daisies; COLOURFUL AND VIBRANT, DAISIES COME IN MANY FORMS AND ADD CHARM TO ANY GARDEN

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Nothing Humble about These Daisies; COLOURFUL AND VIBRANT, DAISIES COME IN MANY FORMS AND ADD CHARM TO ANY GARDEN

Article excerpt

Byline: YOUR GARDEN With Diarmuid Gavin

THERE'S a basic prettiness and innocence about daisies - probably because they evoke childhood garden memories of picking them from the lawn and making daisy chains. However, the lawn daisy is but one of a massive family, the asters, which has more than 23,000 different species and can be found all over the world, from the poles to the tropics.

Did you know that lettuce belongs to the daisy family? We grow it for its edible leaves but if you have ever let it flower to collect seed, you will see it has small yellow daisy flowers.

The majority of daisies are instantly recognisable by their central disc and surrounding petals which radiate like sunrays.

The name daisy is believed to be from the Old English 'daes eage', meaning day's eye, referring to the way the flower opens at dawn.

And at this time of year many daisies, such as dahlias, chrysanthemums and heleniums, play an important role in our gardens providing late summer blossoms right through to early autumn. My favourite late summer daisy can be seen now. It's Echinacea purpurea or the coneflower. You'll recognise its picture from products in your local pharmacy or health store, where it is sold as an immune system booster and relief from colds and flu.

In gardens, it's a key element in the planting style known as New Perennial developed by Dutch garden designer Piet Oudolf in the 1980s.

This informal way of planting mixes North American prairie natives and grasses and is widely used in contemporary schemes today.

E. purpurea has a rusty orange central cone and purple petals, and is attractive to bees and butterflies. Due to its popularity, breeders have been busy making varieties in different colours - 'White Swan' is very elegant and 'Tomato Soup' creates a vivid warm red splash. Plant in welldrained soil, preferably in full sunshine.

More traditional British border examples are Asters or Michaelmas daisies. These are invaluable for providing flowers in September and October. However, many are susceptible to mildew so it's best to choose mildew-resistant varieties.

For example, aster novi-belgii are prone to mildew but the New England asters, novi-angliae, have good resistance. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.