The family Compositae is filled with the many-rayed flowers we know as daisies. Daisies come in all sizes, colors and shapes and bloom at different times of the year. You can grow a daisy garden that looks like a wild garden, an English garden, or a formal garden. Some daisy-flowered plants grow in neat mounds and others will sprawl. Most of them do well as cut flowers and tend to flower abundantly. There are many ways to design with daisies.
You can cross the rainbow with daisy flowers. Reds and pinks can be found in Pyrethrums, Gebera Hybrids and the charming little English daisies (Bellis perennis). Oranges blaze in Tithonias and Cosmos or glow in the peaches of Dimorphotheca. Yellows shine in Coreopsis and giant sunflowers. Greens subtly shine through varieties of Rudbekias. You can even find a sky blue color in the flower of the Felicia. Mauves of all shades are offered by many asters and Swan River Daisies (Brachycome).
Purples are offered by Echinacea purpurea and more asters. And whites glisten in Shasta daisies and the diminutive Chamomile. Rusts and chocolates color Chrysanthemums, many Black-eyed-Susans (also in the Rudbeckia family) and sunflower hybrids. There are many other daisies to choose from and some of the above families come in whole selections of additional colors.
You can have daisy gardens by color groupings. Mixing blues, purples and pinks gives a cool feel to a garden. The hot bright reds, oranges and yellows create a bold statement. Selecting soft pastel shades will create a gentle feel to a garden. And white contrasts wonderfully in a shade garden with lots of green.
Daisies also mix well with other shaped flowers and add a sparkle of color to foliage gardens. Although many daisies bloom in the spring, if you chose carefully, you can have one variety or another in bloom practically year-round. Look for daisy-flowered plants available at your local nurseries and home stores. Look for varieties of Argyanthemum in single and double flowered pinks, whites and yellows. They will form a neat mound for several years. The bigger yellow-flowered Euryops can take our full sun and tough soil in most warm-climate locations, but it will grow 3 to 4 feet in size. Felicias offer a remarkable sky blue flower, though they tend to grow rather straggly after a few years.
Take a look around and chose some daisies for your garden. Create a whole garden of them. Use them to fill out bare areas, or plant them in patches. Bring the flowers inside for bouquets. You can design with daisies to bring color, playfulness and a feeling of eternal springtime to the garden.
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