The Butter Daisy
THE ONLY thing a bit lackluster about the plant, Melampodium paludosum is its first name, but that may be just a matter of my opinion.
This apart, Melampodium (Mellie for short) or for some people, the Butter Daisy, will transform anywhere it is planted into a glowing profusion of yellow.
Melampodium is of the Asteraceae (ass-ter-AY-see-ee) or sunflower family, and of the species paludosum (pal-oo-DOH-sum).
It is a vigorous, bushy shrub 10 to 15 inches high, with bright green leaves that have many daisy-like flowers of a bronze yellow colour about an inch in diameter.
It is a rugged plant that is native to the tropical to subtropical regions that include Central America, Southwestern United States, California, Florida, the Caribbean, and South America.
Most of the 39 species can be found in Mexico, five in the southwestern United States, and three are scattered in Colombia and Brazil.
Melampodium is among the most prolific of flower plants, in that it stays covered with flowers from an early age all year round, and self germinates. Once it matures, it plants its own seeds, and doesn’t need any help whatsoever with continued proliferation.
The plant can be placed where there is need for some contrast between flowers and foliage, and can also be used as a sunny ground cover or be planted toward the front of flower borders.
It is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds, is drought-tolerant, and suitable for xeriscaping ie: Landscaping, using only drought-tolerant plants, so that (apart from initial establishment) you never need to water the garden, even in semi-desert regions.
Local horticulturalist, Ms. Britta Neher of the # 1 Plant Shop located at 70 Sheriff Street (Tel # 227 8094) says that Melampodium is available at her establishment at a price of $500 each.
The Butter Daisy