Townsendia Plant Growing & Care Guide for Gardeners

Article by Dean Ravenscroft, Ph.D. - Updated 27th Oct 2023

In this Gardener's HQ guide, we'll explore cultivating Townsendia plants in your garden, indoor spaces, and other settings.

At a Glance: Townsendia
  • Plant Characteristics: Townsendia boasts vibrant daisy-like flowers, bringing a cheerful ambiance to gardens. These perennial herbs make excellent ground covers and can uplift rock garden aesthetics.
  • Ideal Growing Conditions: They prefer full sunlight and well-drained soil. Tolerant of drought, so suited for drier, arid regions.
  • General Care: Minimal watering is required. Deadheading spent blooms promotes prolonged flowering.
  • Tips for New Gardeners: Easter daisy is a resilient choice for beginners. While it is low-maintenance, ensuring good soil drainage is crucial. May be affected by aphids, but these are generally manageable.

Townsend Daisy: Cultivation & Garden Use

Townsendia are small hardy perennials that reach from 10 to 20 cm (4 to 8 inches) in height.

Their small size makes them an ideal plant to grow in rock gardens.

Townsendia plants have narrow leaves and come into bloom from spring to summer.

They carry flowers that are reminiscent of Asters. These may be pink, white, or purple, and often have a yellow centre.

Townsendia incana
Townsendia incana - Hoary Ground Daisy by pellaea.

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Townsendia Growing and Care Guide

  • Common Names: Townsend daisy.
  • Life Cycle: Hardy perennial. Some annuals and biennials.
  • Height: 3 to 8 inches (7—20 cm).
  • Native: North America.
  • Growing Region: Zones 3 to 9.
  • Flowers: Spring through to summer.
  • Flower Details: White, purple, pink, blue, yellow. Daisy-like ray and disc florets. Showy.
  • Foliage: Wide variation in appearance. Some plants are erect whilst others have a more prostate nature. Rosette. Linear, or lance-shaped. Rough hairs.
  • Sowing: Cover seeds. Germination time: one to three months. Spacing 3 to 6 inches (7—15 cm).
    Seed: Method 1: Seeds should first be sown into flats in the autumn. Next sink the flat into the ground in an area that offers shade, preferably close to a wall that faces north. Provide a glass/plastic covering. Keep an eye on the flats to ensure that the soil remains moist. Bring the flats indoor at the beginning of spring and keep at 60°F (16°C). Transplant seedlings outdoors well after the last frost in spring.
    Seed: Method 2: In the spring, sow seeds in a moist growing medium, in flats. Then wrap in a large plastic bag, and stratify by refrigeration for three weeks. Next bury the flat as described above. Transplant them to their final location in the autumn.
  • Requirements and care: Full sunlight. Excellent drainage. Gritty. Moist soil. Propagate: from seed.
  • Family: Asteraceae (Compositae).
  • Closely Related Species: Aster, Daisy, and Sunflowers.
  • Miscellaneous: Genus was named after the American banker and amateur botanist David Townsend.

How to Grow Townsendia

When growing Townsendia from seeds, it is best to first sow them in flats.

This can be done in the autumn (bring indoors for the winter) or spring. If starting in spring, then the seeds should first be refrigerated. To do this, sow the Townsendia plant seeds in the flat and lightly cover, then put the flat in a black plastic bag and place in the fridge for about three weeks.

The flat should then be sank into a shady part of the garden, and covered with glass.

Once the Townsendia seeds have germinated, allow them to grow a while and transplant to their final location in the autumn.

Plants like to grow in sunny areas of the garden that have very good drainage. Therefore the soil should be gritty and moist. Ideally the Townsendia plants should be spaced at about 10 to 15 cm (4 to 6 inches) apart.

Caring for Townsendia

It is important to keep an eye on Townsendia in the winter as they do not like to get too wet. So it is best to surround the plant with gravel.

If you require more plants, then it is usually best to propagate from seed.

Common Questions

How many members does the Townsendia genus have?

The Townsendia genus consists of about 30 species, commonly referred to as Easter daisies.

Do members of Townsendia make a good garden or landscaping plant?

Yes, Townsendia is great for rock gardens or border fronts, providing lovely spring flowers.

Which Townsendia species are most frequently grown by gardeners?

The most commonly grown species is Townsendia incana, appreciated for its silver foliage and pink flowers.

Are members of the Townsendia plant genus fragrant?

Townsendia flowers are not typically known for their fragrance.

What is the perfect location to grow Townsendia?

Townsendia prefers full sun and well-drained soil, particularly in rock gardens or gravelly areas.

Is Townsendia invasive in the USA, if so in which states?

Currently, Townsendia species are not considered invasive in the USA. Always consult local regulations for the most current information.

How do I remove Townsendia plants from my garden?

To remove Townsendia, dig up the plants, making sure to remove the entire root system.


The Townsendia plant genus includes perennial plants native to North America. They are valued for their daisy-like flowers that bloom in spring or summer, often before their foliage fully develops.

Grow Townsendia from seeds or divisions, ideally in spring. They prefer a sunny location and well-drained, sandy or gravelly soil. Regular watering is necessary, particularly during dry periods, but overwatering should be avoided to prevent root rot.

I hope that you enjoyed this guide on how to grow Townsendia plants. You may also enjoy the following Gardener's HQ growing guides: How to grow Venidium and Arctotis plants.

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