Common name: Dahlberg daisy, golden fleece
Latin name: Thymophylla tenuiloba var. tenuiloba, syn. Dyssodia tenuiloba
Plant type: Annual
USDA Hardiness Zones: n/a
Plant size: 6-12″ high and wide
Cultural needs: Sunny, well drained, neutral or slightly acidic poor soil
Delicate little annuals with lacy foliage and small yellow daisies soften the toughest rocks. Dahlberg daisy seeds, sown mid spring between cracks in slate mountains, will need little water or nutrients once established. Flowers bloom all summer followed by typical aster-family fluffy seeds that find the wind and new cracks to grow in. This Texan/Mexican native seems to be a guarded secret. Finding seedlings in nurseries is difficult, but Bobby Waal found some in spring and got a jump on the season so he could have mature plants by June here in his Alps Railway. I’ve found them (rarely) at hardware stores. Seeds are available from several seed companies online.
Be sure to give golden fleece plenty of sun to produce the flowers. I like the ferny, needle-like foliage coming up between pavers. It’s fun to be surprised by the aromatic leaves, which give off a pungent, lemony fragrance. Scatter seeds as a groundcover that thrives on neglect. Allow the seed heads to dry on the plants and collect some, label an envelope, and sow seeds in the spring.