Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Unkempt four-nerve daisy

with 19 comments

A common wildflower in Austin, and one that’s found here for most of the year, is the four-nerve daisy, Tetraneuris linearifolia. Here’s the rather wildly arrayed flower head of one seen from the side. Look at the midsection of the ray pointing “northeast” and you can easily count the four “nerves” that have given the species the first part of both its scientific and popular names.

I took this photograph on April 1st along Yaupon Dr. in my extended neighborhood.

© 2018 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

April 12, 2018 at 4:53 AM

19 Responses

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  1. It seems this 4-nerve daisy is a nervous wreck. Do you keep track of the compass directions in your posts? Yesterday you were southeast. Today we are directed northeast. I am trying to imagine your photos set around the points of a compass.


    April 12, 2018 at 7:13 AM

    • You’ve hit on it: I try to be all-encompassing in my photographs. As for the nervous wreck of a flower, I suspect a spider had something to do with it, at least in the formation of the little “heart” that Eve saw in the lower portion.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 12, 2018 at 7:29 AM

  2. Such a beautiful flower and excellent photo, Steve, and your description was easy to follow and very informative, thank you.

    Jet Eliot

    April 12, 2018 at 8:06 AM

    • You’re welcome. I show the four-nerve daisy every year, partly because I like it, partly because it’s so easy to find, and partly to promote it because I have the impression that beyond the community of native plant folks few people are aware of it.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 12, 2018 at 8:28 AM

  3. Sweetly enticing and beautifully rendered.


    April 12, 2018 at 11:50 AM

  4. The four-nerve daisies were everywhere in the hill country when I was there, and I finally was positive of my ID. My photo of the nerves isn’t quite as vivid as yours, but they clearly show, along with the delightful fuzziness on the underside.

    I know a few people who’ll say things like, “She gets on my last nerve.” It looks to me as though something’s gotten on this nervy little daisy’s last nerve, too.


    April 12, 2018 at 10:03 PM

    • Just be aware that there are two similar species of Tetraneuris in central Texas, T. linearifolia and T. scaposa. I’m not always sure which one I’m seeing. I’m glad you finally got to see, and of course enjoy, a four-nerve daisy. I suspect it won’t be your last nerve.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 12, 2018 at 10:59 PM

  5. […] contrast to the willful four-nerve daisy flower head (Tetraneuris linearifolia) you saw last time, the flatness of this one that I found on the same […]

  6. I think spiders should stick to web design, and not floral arrangements. but I like this photo, the flower appears to be clasping its hands in front of it 🙏

    Robert Parker

    April 13, 2018 at 11:43 AM

    • If spiders stick to web design, I’ve heard they can earn lots of money. Your notion of clasping hands reminds me of that venerable zen parable about the sound of two ray flowers clapping.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 13, 2018 at 5:00 PM

  7. Do the redbuds happen to be blooming now? (I don’t mean to change the subject, but there is no other way to ask.)


    April 14, 2018 at 2:01 PM

    • No, the redbuds are well past that stage. The blossoms reached their peak about a month ago:


      Steve Schwartzman

      April 14, 2018 at 3:00 PM

      • WOW! Everything seems to be so far behind our schedule that I really did not expect something to be AHEAD of our schedule. Ours still have color on them! We have Eastern redbuds here, which could be different from your native redbuds. (I was never really clear on that.) Our native Western reddbud is not used in landscapes much.


        April 14, 2018 at 3:02 PM

        • We have the eastern redbud here, too, though it’s Cercis canadensis var. texensis.

          We drove north 10 years ago at this time. As we got into higher latitudes, the spring receded. By the time we got to Kansas City, we were back to resplendently flowering redbuds like the ones we’d seen a month earlier in Austin.

          Steve Schwartzman

          April 14, 2018 at 3:19 PM

  8. […] via Unkempt four-nerve daisy — Portraits of Wildflowers […]

  9. […] tinged with orange, and green ‘nerves’ in the ray flowers (akin to those seen in the four-nerve daisy, or Tetraneuris linearifolia) become more […]

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