Thursday, January 9, 2014

Daisy fleabane - Erigeron quercifolius


Daisy fleabane (Erigeron quercifolius) is a herbaceous short-lived perennial found statewide in a variety of open, upland disturbed habitats.  Outside of Florida, it is common in much of the Southeast.  It is often found along roadsides and open fields as it takes quick opportunity to colonize just about any opening or disturbance.
Daisy fleabane is also known as "oakleaf" fleabane as the basal leaves are lobed like some oaks are. In fact, the Latin name means "foliage like an oak."  These leaves form rosettes that are up to 6 inches across. The leaves lie flat to the ground, are somewhat linear and have a deeply notched margin.  They also are often yellow-green on color and are rough to the touch.
Leaves emerge in the spring or overwinter and the basal leaves form colonies of many plants.  Flower stalks emerge from the center of each and reach a mature height of 12-24 inches by early summer.  The flower heads are only 1/4-inch across, but are produced in large numbers.  Each is composed of many thin white ray petals surrounding a rounded yellow disc.  The flowers attract a diversity of small pollinators.
Daisy fleabane is sometimes sold commercially and can easily be propagated from seed collected in the late summer and fall.  It is not fussy as to growing conditions, but should not be grown in shade or in wet soils.  I find it to be a bit weedy, but can be attractive if used in mass with other wildflowers.

1 comment:

  1. I have enjoyed scrolling through your blog. We recently relocated from SW Florida to North Central, near Gainesville.
    The property we bought has a lotta trees and shade. Outside the chainlink on one side a jungle has been allowed to grow. The shrubs, vines and small trees have been cleared and as time and energy allow I dig up and remove all the stumps and invasive tubers. I would like to plant wildflowers there in about a 3'X50' swath that will attract birds, butterflies and beneficial pollinators. The pecan trees do not make leaves until mid April or later, then shade happens Can I plant the same variety of wildflowers I see on the roadside? It seems little information is available as to when and how. I am late seventies and most of the area will not be prepared any time soon, though some is. I hope I have not worn you out with this and covet your thoughts.
    Charles E. "Charlie" Brown
    Another address for me is: charlie@ethiopianchild.org


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