Oxeye Daisy
Leucanthemum vulgareAsteraceae
Whole Plant
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Flower
Leaf
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Habitat
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Photos (c) Cheryl Comeau Beaton unless otherwise noted

Synonyms:

  • Leucanthemum vulgare
  • L. leucanthemum
  • ox-eye daisy, field daisy, white daisy

The Plant:

  • An herbaceous perennial, 1-3 feet tall.

The Leaves:

  • decreasing in size up the stem
  • basal and lower leaves lanceolate, toothed, long petioles
  • upper leaves alternate, narrow, clasping

The Stem:

  • long slender
  • smooth, frequently grooved
  • sometimes branched at tops

The Flowers:

  • Typical daisy-shaped flowers. Yellow disk (center) flowers have 20-30 white ray florets radiating from center. Petals are notched at tips.

The Fruits:

  • brown to black
  • white ridges down the sides

The Habitat:

  • pastures, fields, meadows, roadsides, waste areas

Dispersal:

  • abundantly-produced seeds are easily spread through contact by humans, animals, vehicles and water
  • also reproduces vegetatively by rhizomes

Key ID Features:

  • basal and lower leaves lance shaped
  • toothed
  • upper leaves alternate
  • daisy-like flower
  • notched at tips
  • white ray flowers with yellow disk flowers (center)

Similar Species:

  • Shasta daisy (Leucanthemum maximum) is a commonly planted garden flower which resembles Oxeye daisy, though it is a much more robust plant, with toothed, lanceolate leaves up to 9 inches long.

Notes:

  • Oxeye daisy was planted as an ornamental and escaped through its heavy seed production. It was planted and utilized in home remedies, such as curing whooping cough, asthma, and as a tea for its antispasmodic properties. Also the young leaves are eaten in salads. It is a common seed in wildflower mixes sold at garden centers, care should be taken when purchasing these commercial seed mixes.
  • On Nantucket, this is a fairly common species. More information is needed to determine whether it is displacing native species where it invades.

Growth Form: Herb

Origin: Europe

Level of Invasiveness for Nantucket: Likely Invasive

Level of Invasiveness for Massachusetts: Not evaluated

Massachusetts Cultivation Restrictions: no




Credits: The Electronic Field Guide to the Invasive Plants of Nantucket (c) 2005-2006 Maria Mitchell Association, EFG Project, UMass Boston