The Crown Daisy (Glebionis coronaria), or lelluxa in Maltese, is one of the most prolific wild flowers in Malta. From February to May various areas around the island are carpeted with its golden flowers. The plants will wilt and dry as soon as the temperature starts to rise. This plant does not grow readily in areas where the soil contains a lot of clay as it prefers well-drained soil. But sometimes it seems as if they will grow just anywhere …
Crown daisies are not poisonous and their flowers have a pungent smell reminiscent of camomile. They are said to have expectorant properties and were used with copious amounts of black pepper to treat gonnorrhoea.
Crown daisies are frequently used by children in games of ‘he loves me, he loves me not’ when subsequent petals are removed until the last remaining petal will confirm whether he loves you or not.
A variant of this flower exists consisting of a yellow centre and white petals. This flower is much less common than the all-yellow flower. Crown daisies are at their peak right now. In a few weeks they will all disappear leaving us only with the memory of fields paved with gold.
Photographed at Fawwara