Oxeye daisy (Leucanthemum vulgare)

five white flowers with white pedals and a yellow middle.

 
 

Oxeye daisy is a perennial plant. As with other daisy species, it has flowers with white petals with a yellow center. Oxeye daisy can become abundant in disturbed areas, but is not thought to be a big threat to high quality, native habitats.

Description

Appearance

Oxeye daisy is a perennial herbaceous plant. Its thin, 1-2 feet tall stems typically branch to produce two or more flower heads. The plant smells like sage. It frequently escapes garden plantings.

Leaves and Stem

Oxeye daisy has a base of leaves at the ground and flowering stalks with alternate leaves. Leaves are deeply cut and lobed.

Flowers

This plant has white daisies with a yellow central disc, 2 inches across, that bloom all summer.

Seeds

The seeds are tufted and dispersed by wind.

Rhizomes and Roots

Oxeye daisy can spread vegetatively with horizontal stems growing below the soil surface (called rhizomes) forming roots and producing new plants.

Biology

Oxeye daisy is a perennial plant that grows in disturbed, open areas. Oxeye daisy can spread by seed and can also spread vegetatively by rhizomes sending up plants nearby the parent plant.

Origin and Spread

Oxeye daisy is native to Europe and was introduced to the United States in the 1800s as an ornamental plant. It has spread from gardens to become one of the most common roadside weeds.
Refer to EDDMapS Distribution Maps for current distribution.

Don't be fooled by these look-alikes

  • Shasta daisy, Leucanthemum × superbum (non-native) – Shasta daisies were bred as hybrids of multiple daisy species including oxeye daisy. Shasta daisies do not spread by rhizomes as oxeye daisy does. Shasta daisies are taller and have larger leaves and flowers than oxeye daisy. Shasta daisy leaves are not deeply cut and lobed.
  • Eastern daisy fleabane, Erigeron anuus (native); Philadelphia fleabane, Erigeron philadelphicus (native); and lesser daisy fleabane, Erigeron strigosus (native) – The fleabanes have numerous white petals that are very thin.
  • False chamomile Matricaria recutita/chamomilla (non-native) and scentless chamomile Tripleurospermum perforatum/inodorum (non-native) – These chamomiles have very fine, thin leaves.
 
Regulatory Classification

Oxeye daisy is not regulated.

Threat to Minnesota
  • It frequently invades disturbed fields and meadows, competing with native plants, especially when grazing livestock is present.
  • It is not a threat to intact prairies and savannas.
What you should do

One way that invasive plant seeds and fragments can spread is in soil.  Sometimes plants are planted purposefully.  You can prevent the spread of invasive plants.

PlayCleanGo: Stop Invasive Species in Your Tracks

  • REMOVE plants, animals & mud from boots, gear, pets & vehicle.
  • CLEAN your gear before entering & leaving the recreation site.
  • STAY on designated roads & trails.
  • PLANT non-invasive species.
Native Substitutes
 
Control Methods

Mechanical control can be done by hand pulling or digging the plant out.

Herbicide control can be done using systemic herbicide such as glyphosate or 2,4-D applied to the rosette stage. Systemic herbicides are taken up by plants and move within the plant, which can kill leaves, stems, and roots.

Reporting

Oxeye daisy is unregulated, but you can add to the public information about this species by reporting new occurrences through EDDMapS Midwest.

Resources