Tips on Growing the Montauk Daisy
The Montauk Daisy is one of the few plants that can liven up a fall garden. That’s because the Montauk Daisy has green foliage all spring and summer, and then in September or October bursts forth with a huge number of flowers. Named after Montauk, New York, which is a city on Long Island, the Montauk Daisy is known as a profuse bloomer. Unlike many plants, it withstands sea salt with no problems at all. Its only fault seems to be that some people like its fragrance and some people hate it.
The scientific name for the Montauk Daisy is Chrysanthemum nipponicum, and sometimes people refer to it as a Nippon Daisy. Each plant grows to be two feet high and two feet wide. They like very acidic soil and full sun. They do need pruning--they should be cut in half in the spring and their growth should be controlled by pinching off new stem growth in the spring and early summer. Montauk Daisies like both compost and synthetic fertilizers. They will blossom with large 3-inch flowers in the fall and bloom until they are killed by frost. The flowers have yellow centers with white petals like traditional daisies.
If you want to take the origin of this daisy back to its beginnings, it was named Nipponanthemum, which roughly translated means Japanese flower. In the 1860s, a Russian botanist, Carl Maximowicz, brought the Nippon Daisy with other Japanese plants to his botanical garden in St. Petersberg. He distributed many of these plants around the world so that more people could study them and appreciate their beauty. It is believed that the Nippon Daisy, now known in the United States as the Montauk Daisy, went to France. Adrien Rene Francet, director of the Natural History Museum in Paris, was the first person to present this daisy publicly and he is credited with its further distribution.
The Montauk Daisy, like many other daisies, has flowers that open in the morning and close in the evening. You can use their green summer foliage to add to the attractiveness of other plants. When fall blooming begins, they will refresh your garden with color at a time when most of the summer plants are dying. The blooms of the Montauk Daisy last for a long time. They are also great as cut flowers because they have tall stems that are quite strong.
In order for your Montauk Daisies to stay healthy, you should lift out the clumps and separate them every two or three years. The best time is in the spring when they are just starting to awaken from being dormant. If you want to expand your daisies, you can replant the separated clumps. Some people like to have a row of the daisies while others fill in a large space so that their whole yard will look alive in the fall. They also look nice when planted with other flowers that will bloom in the fall, such as asters.
The Montauk Daisy is a strong, hardy plant that can survive adverse conditions, including drought. It requires little in the way of care, making it a popular plant even with beginner gardeners.