Vectors of spread:
General: Oxeye Daisy is an upright perennial, up to 1m in height in dense clumps.
Flowers: Flowers are daisy-like, with white rays and yellow disks, up to 5cm across. Flowerheads are solitary at the end of branches.
Stem: Stems are multiple and unbranched, up to 1m tall. They are smooth, frequently grooved, and generally hairless.
Leaves: Leaves are alternate, and decreasing in size up the stem. Upper leaves have wavy to toothed edges; lower leaves are spoon-shaped.
Non-native ornamental lookalikes
Shasta Daisy (Leucanthemum x superbum): a harmless ornamental, it has a larger yellow disk and white ray flowers. Shasta daisies also grow 15-30cm taller than Oxeye Daisies.
English Daisy (Bellis perennis): has much rounder foliage, and the flower petals are often double. English Daisies are also generally more compact, and they don’t grow past 15-20cm tall.
Native Asters (Aster spp.) and Fleabanes (Erigeron spp.) resemble Oxeye Daisy but typically have undivided leaf margins without lobes or teeth. Seeds of Aster and Fleabanes also have a pappus while Oxeye Daisy seeds do not. (Erigeron acris picture should be on its way from Bryan Kelly-McArthur – see email) (Also contacted a photographer off E-flora for permission to use a photo of Asters alpinus)
Scentless Chamomile (Matricaria perforata) is another invasive plant in the Sea to Sky. Its foliage is much lacier and fern-like. You can learn more about Scentless Chamomile here.
Habitat and Origin
Oxeye Daisy was introduced from Europe in the early 1800’s primarily as a grass seed contaminant, and subsequently spread as an ornamental.
It lives in mesic to dry areas such as roadsides, pastures, waste areas, grasslands, and forested areas within low to mid-elevations. In BC, it is common south of the 56th parallel.
Propagation and Vectors of Spread
Oxeye Daisy is spread by seed, garden waste, machinerie, footwear and soil; it is also sold as an ornamental. It also spreads vegetatively through underground stems.
One plant can produce up to 26,000 seeds, and seeds can remain viable in the soil for many years.
Ecological and Economic Impacts
Impacts of Oxeye Daisy infestations to the forest industry are not well-known and require further research; in terms of economic impact for agriculture, it carries several crop diseases including Yellow dwarf virus of potatoes.
Oxeye Daisy forms dense stands that inhibit forage production, dominating rangelands; it also reduces forage for wildlife and livestock, and decreases local plant biodiversity.
What Can I Do?
Oxeye Daisy is found throughout the Sea to Sky region, so STRATEGIC CONTROL and PREVENTION of further spread are key.
Learn to identify Oxeye Daisy: use the images presented in this profile page to learn how to identify Oxeye Daisy.
What to do if you spot it: You can report any Oxeye Daisy sighting by clicking here.
- Regularly monitor properties for weed infestations.
- Ensure soil and gravel is uncontaminated before transport
- Minimize soil disturbance in area surrounding infestation
- Ensure plants (particularly flowering heads or root fragments) are bagged or covered to prevent spread during transport to designated disposal sites (e.g. landfill).
- Avoid wildflower mixes that contain Oxeye Daisy.
- Plant Oxeye Daisy in a garden, no matter how well-contained its enclosure may seem.
- Move soil that has been contaminated with Oxeye Daisy.
- Unload, park, or store equipment or vehicles in infested areas; remove plant material from any equipment, vehicles, or clothing used in such areas and wash equipment and vehicles at designated cleaning sites before leaving infested areas.
- Hand dig before seed production, ensuring as much root as possible is removed.
- Mowing can be effective to reduce seed production, but should be repeated as it may stimulate vegetation growth.
- Clopyralid, metsulfuron methyl, picloram and 2,4-D have all proven effective in specific situations. Picloram, however, is not suitable for wet, coastal soils.
- We recommend that any herbicide application is carried out by a person holding a valid BC Pesticide Applicator Certificate. Before selecting and applying herbicides, you must review and follow herbicide labels and application rates; municipal, regional, provincial and federal laws and regulations; species-specific treatment recommendations; and site-specific goals and objectives.
- Grazing by sheep and goats may reduce Oxeye Daisy populations.
- No biocontrol agent is currently available for Oxeye Daisy in BC. Further research is required.
- BC Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, Best Practices for Managing Invasive Plants on Roadsides, https://prrd.bc.ca/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/ManagingInvasivePlants.pdf
- Garry Oak Ecosystems Recovery Team, Leucanthemum vulgare, https://www.goert.ca/documents/InvFS_oxeyedaisy.pdf
- Invasive Species Compendium, Leucanthemum vulgare, https://www.cabi.org/isc/datasheet/13357
- Invasive Species Council of BC, Oxeye Daisy, https://bcinvasives.ca/invasives/oxeye-daisy/
- Invasive Species Council of BC, Oxeye Daisy TIPS Factsheet, https://bcinvasives.ca/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/Oxeye-Daisy_Factsheet_10_04_2019.pdf
- Invasive Species Council of Manitoba, Ox-eye Daisy, https://invasivespeciesmanitoba.com/site/index.php?page=oxeye-daisy
- Lillooet Regional Invasive Species Society, Oxeye Daisy, https://lriss.ca/species/oxeye-daisy