Erigeron karvinskianus

posted in: Gardening | 10
this is a multiple exposure montage of Erigeron karvinskianus daisies

The only way I can fully describe Erigeron karvinskianus is to use words like splendorous, billowing, myriads, festooned and floriferous. These little daisies might look like distant cousins of the daisies that you try to remove from your lawns. BUT these ones have utter sophistication written all over them.


They have an attitude of elaborate self-abandonment as they bloom so abundantly.

The plant is easy to grow and so rewarding. Correctly pronouncing Erigeron karvinskianus is probably more challenging! Calling it Mexican Fleabane, Santa Barbara, Stallone or Mexican daisy is so much easier to say and remember.

air-IDJ-er-on kar-vin-skee-AY-nus

It grows to approx. 25cm in height. Flowers from June to November in my garden each year. While further south it can stay in flower for up to 9 months of the year.

It produces oily smoke when burnt that repels fleas so hence the common name Fleabane.


Baron Friedrich Wilhelm von Karwinsky von Karwin was the Hungarian botanist responsible for introducing this plant to Europe from Mexico. As a result it's been growing in UK gardens since 1836.


Masses of narrow white petals surround the yellow disc florets. Later these petals slowly age to pink and purple. In effect there are many shades of colour gently cascading over pathways, walls and containers all summer long.

Erigeron karvinskianus also known as stallone daisy
this is an image of Erigeron karvinskianus commonly known as Mexican fleabane

A Plant with a Reputation!

Now some things are too good to be true! This little daisy grows too well in some parts of the world. It’s an invasive weed in some countries … but not here in Perthshire.  As they say one gardener’s weed is another gardener’s desirable plant. The bees and butterflies love this plant as much as I do. Furthermore it’s also fashionable favourite with many of today’s garden designers.


This little daisy is so versatile in the garden. It looks just as good in a gravel garden. At the front of a border or path. As well as in a container or window box with its soft airy clouds of pastel coloured blooms.  

Growing in Scotland

The plant is trouble free, low growing and doesn’t mind inland or coastal gardens. Plant it in a sunny part of the garden in free draining soil. Under those circumstances it should survive our cold damp Scottish winters.


Make sure you don’t pull the plant out in your early spring tidy up as it’s slow to green up. Cut off the old dried stems in mid spring once you see the new growth appearing at the base.


I usually give the plants a little boost of a nitrogen feed to help them along in May.  


If the plant is growing in a container feed it with a high potash food during the summer months. Dead heading will encourage repeat flowering and keep the plant looking tidy.


It self-seeds freely in southern parts of the UK. Although it hasn't self seeded in my Perthshire garden over the last 3 years. 


Maybe that’s really a blessing in disguise considering its international reputation!



Erigeron karvinskianus
Rosie Nixon
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Rosie is based in Perth, Perthshire as a garden photographer, writer and nature lover. She enjoys soaking up nature in her own garden and is easily distracted from doing the weeding by anything that flutters, flies, buzzes, creeps or crawls! She enjoys sharing the beauty of creation through her photography. Rosie has been featured on TV on BBC2's The Beechgrove Garden and she uses the Scottish outdoors as her natural light studio. Her work can be seen at the only photographic gallery in Scotland - Close Gallery, 4b Howe Street, Edinburgh.

10 Responses

  1. Avatar

    I love the little daisy. I was looking to see if it the same as a little daisy we call the English daisy here, but I don't think so. I've not seem them in the garden centers, but I'd love to have them here at the Garden Spot. I may try garden catalogs. Lovely little flowers, aren't they.

    • Avatar
      Rosie Nixon

      Thanks for the visit Ann 🙂 It's quite similar to the 'english daisy' but much much bigger and there are so many different colours of blooms. I'm sure you'll find it in the USA though it might be too invasive.

  2. Avatar

    They are so beautiful Rosie, i saw some of them in New Zealand. And i smiled at your phrase "attitude of elaborate self-abandonment", maybe i will borrow it sometime. Thanks

    • Avatar
      Rosie Nixon

      Thanks for popping by Andrea … I think these could be called a weed by some New Zealand gardeners!

  3. Avatar

    Daisy gone crazy! Love it:) I have a soft spot for Erigeron. Mine has been with me for many years and surviving many hard winters. Nice to learn some history about it. Thanks for that.

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    lucio bovolini

    This is amazing. Thanks for sharing this beautiful and elegant post.:) x-)

  5. Avatar

    WordPress seems to have removed you from my reader! I was looking again at your macro photos and rediscovered your blog.I admired this plant in a friend's garden and put one in myself earlier this year. I was pleased to read your comments about it surviving the winter here in Scotland, though disappointed it is unlikely to self seed here. I wonder if it will divide? I have sent you a message regarding your photos.

    • Avatar
      Rosie Nixon

      Many thanks for the visit 🙂 Myaberdeengarden. I don't think it will divide. You would have to collect the seed and sow indoors with a propagator up here in Scotland. I have a large pot and have 3 of these plants in it. (Must take some photos of that) They are still in full flower at the end of October and billowing over the edges of the pot. I have 10 plants in pots and maybe another 7 in the ground. Hopefully I'll get them all through another winter.

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