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The noted American botanist and horticultural expert Luther Burbank introduced this popular flower in 1901, a product of more than 15 years of selection and breeding. He named this stunning little flower after California’s Mt. Shasta, a snow-capped mountain. The poet Chaucer was the first to give this family of flowers the name “day’s eye,” because of their habit of opening in the morning and closing at night. A common saying of the era stated, “When you can put your foot on seven daisies, summer is come.” In the language of flowers, daisies symbolize innocence, simplicity, and modesty.
Sowing: Direct sow in spring after the last chance of frost, sowing on the surface of the soil; press the soil down lightly and keep moderately moist until germination, which should take place within 10-14 days. To start indoors, sow on the surface of a flat 6-8 weeks before the last frost of spring. Keep the soil lightly moist and at a temperature of 70 degrees F until germination. Transplant or thin the seedlings as soon as they reach a height of several inches.
Growing: Water seedlings regularly until they become established; mature plants also appreciate occasional watering, but too much moisture will cause disease and root rot. To encourage branching and bushy growth, pinch off the growing tips. When grown from seed, Shasta daisies may not bloom fully until their second year. Tall plants may need support or staking. Watch out for aphids, slugs, and earwigs, which can cause damage. This plant will self-seed and spread slowly by rhizomes; mature plants can also be divided in the fall or early spring. Cut the plants down to 2″ above the ground after the first frost. These plants attract butterflies and resist deer.
Harvesting: Daisies make long lasting fresh flowers; cut the stems long and place them in water immediately.
Seed Saving: Late in the season, allow the blossoms to fully mature; when the centers turn brown, cut them off and spread them out to dry away from direct sunlight. After about two weeks or when the heads have fully dried, rub them lightly to separate the seed from the husks. Store the seed in a cool, dry place.
Latin Name: Chrysanthemum maximum
Species Origin: Europe
Type: Garden Flowers
Life Cycle: Perennial
USDA Zones: 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
US Regions: California, Mountain, Arid/Desert, Plains/Texas, Midwest, Northern, Northeast, Southeast
Seeds per Ounce: 25,000
Stratification: No Stratification
Germination Ease: No Stratification
Sunlight: Full Sun, Part Sun
Height: 30 Inches
Bloom Season: Blooms Early Summer, Blooms Late Summer
Uses: Cut Flowers, Deer Resistant
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