The humble yet cheerfully attractive plants is familiar to most as a 'weed' of lawns and a feature of many children's games (4). The small, hairy, spoon-shaped leaves, which are green throughout the year, are arranged in flat, neat rosettes (5). The upturned flower heads look like single flowers, but actually consist of a number of small, tightly packed individual flowers or 'florets'; this arrangement is a type of inflorescence known as a 'capitulum'. The flower heads have bright golden-yellow central discs, composed of 'disk florets', which are surrounded by petal-like white 'ray-florets' that often have deep pink or reddish flushes on the underside (2). This species was described as the 'day’s eye', by Chaucer and 'the emperice and flour of floures alle' (5).
Found in all types of mown, trampled or grazed calcareous and neutral grassland, but thrives best in areas that become fairly wet for some of the year. This species is known chiefly as a weed of lawns, pastureland and roadside verges, but it also occurs on riverbanks, dune-slacks, and lake margins (3).
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