Anthemis, sometimes called golden marguerite daisy, looks something like a golden daisy-and the cheerful flowers appear throughout the summer. The foliage, which is sometimes a bit fuzzy, is often finely divided, giving the plant a soft texture. The flowers are wonderful cut flowers.
- Common name: Anthemis; marguerite daisy
- Botanical name: Anthemis tinctoria
- Zones: 3 to 7
- Size: To 3 feet tall
- From: Areas of Europe and Asia
- Family: Compositae (daisy family)
- Sun: Full sun
- Soil: Moist, but well-drained soil.
- Moisture: Once established, the plants are drought tolerant.
- Mulch: Lay a 2- to 3-inch-deep layer of mulch over the soil around the plants. Use winter mulch only after the soil has frozen.
- Pruning: Cut plants back in autumn after freezing temperatures arrive or in spring before plants begin to grow.
- Fertilizer: Fertilizer is generally not necessary in soils that are rich in organic matter. If desired, use a balanced fertilizer in spring.
- Division: Divide plants any time of the year. Spring and summer are easiest. Division every few years may be necessary to prevent the plants from forming too large of clumps in these types of soils.
- Seed: Start seed in the garden as soon as it is ripe. Old seed take longer to germinate and can germinate more erratically. Note: Named cultivars of anthemis will not come true from seed, and need to be divided to produce more of the same plant.
- Aphids: These small insects often appear in large numbers on new growth. Spray them off daily with a stream of water; they will not attack a plant after being knocked off. Use an insecticidal soap or neem-oil-based spray if infestations are severe.
- Fungal diseases: If portions of the plant rot or have spotted leaves, the plant may be suffering from fungal disease. To prevent these diseases, try to avoid wetting the plants' foliage, especially after mid-afternoon. It is also helpful to divide plants so that the clumps do not become especially large. This will ensure good airflow, which also discourages these diseases.
- Slugs/Snails: Slugs and snails tend to eat at night, chewing up leaves. To deter them, try surrounding plants with a ring of horticultural grade diatomaceous earth. Some people have found success with laying copper strips around plants, but this does not seem to work for everyone. If slugs are not particularly numerous, set out shallow containers of stale beer at ground level. Slugs, attracted to the beer, crawl into it and drown.
- Gardeners with sensitive skin may suffer from skin irritation if they come in contact with anthemis foliage.
- In particularly rich soils, some anthemis plants have been known to spread faster than a gardener would like.
- Anthemis tinctoria ‘Kelwayi': Grows to 2 feet tall with yellow flowers through the summer.
- Anthemis tinctoria ‘Moonlight': Grows to 3 feet tall with creamy yellow flowers through the summer.