Tag Archives: evergreen

Meadow Blooms 3 – daisy

English Daisy meadow WSO
photo by SVSeekins

My breath caught when I turned the corner along a wooded trail revealing this spring meadow.  Doesn’t it evoke images of butterflies & unicorns?

In my quest to ID this tiny smiling flower, I sent these photos to Saanich Parks’ horticultural supervisor, Kelly Mulhern.  She quickly confirmed my suspicions: English Daisy.

Kelly says it originated in Europe but has naturalized all over the world.    Although many folks enjoy it, “lawn purists” don’t.

The Cedar Hill Golf Course is home to this particular meadow.  Their white drift of spring bloom laughs in the face of the perfect golf green.

English Daisy meadow CU
photo by SVSeekins

I reckon it might be a new version of a sand trap.    The plant grows in a low rosette shape, almost making a cup; perfectly suited for catching & cuddling a golf ball.  And wouldn’t it be a bugger to find a white ball in this sea of white daisies?

The Royal Horticultural Society supports this daisy’s usefulness for planting in a wildflower meadow.  I’m with them (surprise surprise).

But the debate rages.  🙂

C says he prefers the even texture of uninterrupted grasses.  He’s one of those purists.  How about you?

© SVSeekins and Garden Variety Life, 2013

P.S.  Here’s some other meadow faves:

Strawberry Tree vs Urban Deer


arbutus unedo flower in autumn, strawberry tree, garden Victoria BC
photo by SVSeekins
  • They’re evergreen – that’s a big plus in my book.
  • They have pretty little flower clumps – a 2nd season for interest.  That’s another plus.
arbutus unedo berry in autumnstrawberry tree, garden Victoria BC
photo by SVSeekins
  •  They even have edible fruit!  Well, it’s not tasty, but it is edible.  And dangling strawberry-like fruit hanging from a shrub is funky – a 3rd season of interest.

That’s 3 plus signs!  They seemed a perfect choice for my shrub border.

  • They’d give the yard some privacy from the street.
  • They wouldn’t be too tall to interfere with utility lines overhead.

I had to have one! Okay, 3 – because they’re so cool.

  • It turns out the deer think strawberry trees are cool, too.  And delicious.
arbutus unedo protected from deer
photo by SVSeekins

For the bushes to survive & grow to any height, I resorted to protecting them with stucco wire.  It’s worked well.  Instead of being deer pruned, knee height, struggling little bushes, they’ve grown over my head in just a couple of years.

I think they’re kind of pretty. And the dangling strawberries are definitely funky. But the ‘protective custody’ sort of ruins the ‘nature at it’s finest’ vibe.

arbutus unedo - no protective cage
photo by SVSeekins

I removed the wire protection from the 3rd tree this summer. An experiment.

Strawberry Tree vs. Urban Deer.

Blooms only on the top section.

Fullness trimmed out of the lower section.

My guess is that the deer can only reach so high while they’re helping out with the pruning.

Now the experiment continues with crossed fingers.  Hopefully, the deer will leave some of the lower branches though the winter.  Otherwise, this strawberry tree might end up being shaped a little less like a shrub, and a little more like a tree.

There’s a word for that, isn’t there?  A standard?


© SVSeekins and Garden Variety Life, 2011. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to SVSeekins and Garden Variety Life with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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