I love Oxeye daisies – they are so cheerful along the sides of roads from late spring, all through summer and I even have them flowering now beginning of May
- also known as Marguerite Daisies they were originally an ornamental ￼plant from Europe
- now wild and carefree
- conspicuous with large, white, showy, daisy-like flowers with yellow centres
- the name Leucanthemum is from the Greek meaning ‘white- flowered’ while vulgare (Lat.) means common
tall flower stalks up to 1 m tall which grow from a rosette of spoon-shaped long stalked leaves that have toothed margins
- leaves get smaller and more elongated as they go up the stem, are without stalks and hug the stem. The photo right shows leaf forms.
- the young leaves are a tasty addition to a salad, raita or bruschette (recipes below) and good for adding variety to your smoothie
- the flowers can also be eaten, are tasty and have been used successfully to treat whooping cough, asthma, to calm the nerves and as a soothing lotion for conjunctivitis of the eyes
- externally the plant has been used to treat bruises, wounds and ulcers
- the roots were eaten as a salad vegetable in Spain
- ￼ I could not find any nutritional information, but oxeye daisy will be rich in antioxidants, amino acids, chlorophyll, protein and many other minerals and vitamins
- The flowers and leaves can be used in your smoothie
- On the right a beautiful patch of oxeye daisies.
Recipes Inspired by Robin Harford who leads foraging courses in the UK www.eatweeds.co.uk
Ox-eye Daisy Raita
Ox-eye daisy leaves have a unique flavour, and I consider them to be one
of the tastiest wild edible greens. This recipe is a cooling accompaniment to spicy curries. Ingredients￼ 20gm ox-eye daisy leaves 150 ml coconut milk 150ml natural yoghurt or coconut yoghurt 1/2 a juiced lime
- Roughly chop the ox-eye daisy leaves
- Put in a bowl and then add the yoghurt, coconut milk and lime juice
- Mix thoroughly and allow to sit at room temperature for 10 minutes before serving. Serves 2.
Oxeye Daisy Bruschette￼
1 handful of oxeye daisy greens (chopped)
2 garlic cloves (crushed)
14 cherry tomatoes (quartered)
1 tsp red wine vinegar
Olive oil Salt & pepper
Put chopped cherry tomatoes into a bowl. Make sure they are ripe and at room temperature, then add the crushed garlic and red wine vinegar. Mix together. Season with salt and pepper. Leave to stand for 15 minutes. Next slice your rustic bread into portions, and lightly toast, when done drizzle olive oil over the bread, then top with the tomato and oxeye daisy mix. Serve immediately as a light luncheon snack. Serves 2.
Below is a photo of a mason wasp Pison spinolae on the Oxeye daisy. Sometimes the insect is referred to as the mason bee, but the females store paralyzed spiders in their cells and not nectar and pollen, so using `bee’ is incorrect. The native mason wasp uses the holes in my solitary bee house to lay its cocoons. Check this website for more info.