Euryops pectinatus (golden daisy bush)
Euryops pectinatus growing in the South African Landscape at the British Museum in 2010 (Photo: Emma Allen)
Euryops pectinatus (L.) Cass.
golden daisy bush, golden Euryops
Not yet rated according to IUCN Red List criteria.
Rocky, sandstone slopes.
All parts of the plant are poisonous if ingested.
About this species
The generic name comes from the Greek ‘eurys’ meaning large and ‘ops’ meaning eye, referring to the showy flower heads (capitula) with eye-like centres. There are over 100 other species of Euryops, which occur throughout southern and tropical Africa and in Saudi Arabia, with one occurring on Socotra. The specific epithet means pectinate (with narrow divisions like a comb), referring to the divided leaves. Euryops pectinatus has been awarded a Royal Horticultural Society Award of Garden Merit (AGM).
Geography and distribution
Restricted to South Africa where it is found in the south-western Cape from Gifberg to the South Peninsula. It has a characteristic distribution in the fynbos (shrubland or heathland vegetation in coastal and mountainous areas, having winter rainfall and a Mediterranean climate).
Euryops pectinatus is a half-hardy, vigorous, evergreen shrub growing up to 1.5 m tall. Its upright shoots are clad with pinnately dissected, hairy, soft, grey-green leaves in spirals. The leaves are 40-100 mm long.
The bright yellow flower heads (capitula) are produced nearly all year round, with the main display being in spring. The flower heads are borne terminally in loose clusters, or can be solitary, each one being held on a pedicel 7-10 cm long. Each flower head is 5 cm in diameter and consists of an outer ring of female ray florets, with a circle of hermaphrodite disc florets in the centre.
The fruits are one-seeded, hairless or covered in myxogenic (slime-producing) hairs, and are topped by a pappus of white or brown caducous (falling before mature) bristles, although the pappus may be absent.
Grown as an ornamental for its bright yellow flower heads and fern-like leaves.
Golden daisy bush requires a moderate amount of water and should be planted in a position where it can receive full sunlight. When these conditions are satisfied it is fast-growing and flowers freely. After flowering the dead flower heads should be removed, and the shrub should be pruned back lightly. Euryops pectinatus responds well to pruning and can be cut back hard every few years. It can be propagated from seed or by cuttings, which strike easily when placed in sand and kept moist.
This species at Kew
Euryops pectinatus is grown in the behind-the-scenes Decorative Nursery at Kew.
Pressed and dried specimens of E. pectinatus are held in the behind-the-scenes Herbarium at Kew, where they are made available to researchers from around the world, by appointment. The details, including an image, of a specimen of E. pectinatus subspecies lobulatus can be seen online in the Herbarium Catalogue.
Nordenstam, B. (1968). The genus Euryops, part I: Taxonomy. Opera Bot. 20: 1–409.
Scott-Macnab, J. (ed.) (2003). Reader’s Digest New Encyclopedia of Garden Plants and Flowers. The Reader’s Digest Association Ltd, London.
Turner, S. (2001). Euryops pectinatus (L.) Cass. South African National Biodiversity Institute. Available online (accessed 07 June 2010).
Kew Science Editor: Emma Allen/ Nicholas Hind
Kew contributors: Andy Connor, Steve Ruddy, Annie Waddington.
Copyediting: Emma Tredwell
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