The simple name is the Montauk Daisy for Nipponanthemum nipponicum [nip-pon-AN-the-mum, nip-PON-ih-kum]. It is also known by the botanical names Chrysanthemum nipponicum and Leucanthemum nipponicum. It is a herbaceous composite flower perennial from the Aster family, Asteraceae.
Montauk is native to the coastal regions of Japan and has been naturalized in the United States in Long Island, New York and New Jersey.
Unlike other daisy species such as Leucanthemum vulgare (Oxeye daisy), this species is the only one previously associated with Chrysanthemum family.
Now, it is famously known by common names such as:
- Nippon Daisy
- Montauk Daisy
- Japanese daisy plant
… which are referring to the plant’s native habitat.
The fresh daisy-like flowers are the reason why these plants are cultivated popularly in various regions.
One of the most common types of daisy flowers is the Shasta Daisy or Leucanthemum × superbum hybrid which was then crossed with N. nipponicum.
Montauk Daisy Care
Size & Growth
These perennials may grow up to 1.5’ – 3’ feet tall, sprouting shrubby foliage with alternate leaves.
Each leaf is toothed, has a slightly leathery texture, and oblong-shaped.
They grow quite well under the right conditions, putting on a great floral show come bloom time.
Flowering and Fragrance
In late summer or early fall, Montauk daisies put on a showy display of beautiful white flowers until the hard freeze arrives.
These bloomers with daisy-like white flowers have 2” – 3” inches wide flower heads with white rays and green centers.
Rarely, these plants produce red or purple flowers.
Light & Temperature
These plants are hardy to USDA Hardiness Zones 5 to 9.
They are acclimated to coastal climes, doing well in warm but not excessively hot temperatures.
As for humidity, the plant can tolerate different levels.
Full sun is the optimal light conditions for Montauk daisies but partial shade in very hot and overly sunny regions is preferable.
Watering and Feeding
Weekly watering is more than enough for N. nipponicum but they are drought-tolerant and survive without frequent watering every 7 to 10 days.
If the soil has sufficient organic matter, fertilizers aren’t necessary.
If your soil is poor in nutrients, add a balanced, 10-10-10 NPK ratio fertilizer in early spring.
Don’t overfeed the plants as the plant may flop.
Soil & Transplanting
Montauk daisies are drought-tolerant and can succeed in dry, well-drained soils.
They thrive in most average soils with medium moisture.
If the soil doesn’t drain well, improve it by adding sand or small pebbles.
Be careful with using heavy soils with poor drainage as Nippon daisies don’t tolerate sogginess around the roots.
Transplant root divisions in spring or mid to late-summer, moving them to a new position in full sun, planted in dry soil.
Grooming and Maintenance
Growth on these daisies can become leggy and woody if it doesn’t die back during winter. It’s important to cut back the foliage in late fall.
In spring to early summer, when the plant is in its active growing season, to encourage better growth pinch plants back to half their size.
Cease pinching the stems once the flowering season begins.
Deadheading spent daisy flowers can stimulate the plant for additional blooming.
Sterilize the pruning shears before you pruning daisies.
Besides these grooming requirements, the plant is deer-resistant and low-maintenance.
More from the world of Daisies
How to Propagate Nipponanthemum
The Montauk daisy is successfully propagated with divisions.
You simply have to lift the roots carefully, divide the root ball into clumps and plant them in a new location in spring just as new growth is starting to emerge.
Follow these steps:
- First water the parent plant to soften the soil around the base so it’s easy to dig without the roots sustaining damage.
- Use a pitchfork or shovel to lift up the plants.
- Gently tease out the crown from the ground.
- Use your hands to loosen up the root ball and divide the clumps.
- Transplant the healthy and new-looking clumps to new locations.
Montauk Pest or Disease Problem
Like other daisy plants, this species is relatively free of pest and disease problems.
However, the plant might have some susceptibility to fungal diseases, leaf miners and aphids, which are easy to deal with.
As for other diseases, lack of good drainage in the soil can lead to stem rot, root rot, and leaf spots.
However, these are infrequent and are treated with non-toxic solutions from your local nursery or gardening center.
Suggested Montauk Daisy Uses
Gardening enthusiasts recommend the plant for various regions in your garden.
While these are great cut flowers, they look great planted along mid-borders in dry soil.
Or space them in flower beds and gardens among other perennials.
Use perennials with lush foliage or low-growing plants.
We recommend this as Montauk daisy plants seem to lose their lower leaves.
Other perennials will cover up the stems so the flowers could put on the best display.