Talk to me about Montauk daises - pros, cons.
I found them in gallon pots for $5 two or three years ago and bought several.
Pros: They bloom late September into October when little else is blooming. The foliage stays nice right through the year and has quite a thick substance to it. They don't appear to be bothered by any garden pests.
Cons: They need to be cut back or they'll get too large for the space you give them. The lower foliage can get ratty looking but that might be due to where I have them planted in less than full sun. I couldn't honestly say they're drought tolerant after seeing them get crispy last summer.
I have them growing in part sun. They really suffered badly in last season's drought but came back strong again this year. I don't see any buds on mine yet so they may have put all their energy into recovery this year and not bloom again until next year. Photos are from October 2009.
Be aware that deer will snack on the new growth in spring. That works for me, because I always cut the new spring growth back by about 1/2 when it has reached about 14 to 18 inches. Bambi helps. I just need to even it up. Bambi lets it alone when the new spring growth matures. I do like the deep green leathery leaves that, as said above, are attractive all the growing season. It is not evergreen however. The plant becomes woody with age, but covers it's legs well with foliage in early spring. Mine is not showing any sign of budding up yet, but it is still early.
It does reseed some and I have moved these seedlings to other places and they do well in my somewhat ammended clay soil.
I've seen these for sale locally. I was under the impression that they bloomed late enough so that heavy frost could stop the show prematurely in upper zone 6 and further north. I'd still take the chance except that after a good season of Shasta daisies, I'm not sure I need a lesser show of similar white daisies in fall.