Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center - The University of Texas at Austin information

 Native Plant Database

Calyptocarpus vialis

Horseherb, Straggler daisy, Hierba del caballo, Lawnflower

Asteraceae (Aster Family)

Calyptocarpus vialis (Horseherb)
Lytle, Melody

Depending on your point of view, Straggler Daisy or Horseherb is a pest or a welcome, shade-tolerant groundcover that tolerates moderate foot traffic. If you have a shady lawn anywhere within its range, you probably already have it. It gained in popularity during the growth in interest in native plants and is now occasionally available for sale at native plant nurseries (though it is so easy to propagate that you can easily grow it on your own). Thriving in sun or shade, its tiny, yellow daisy flowers add a minute touch of color to shady areas and attract small butterflies like sulfurs and skippers.

Because it is dormant in cold winters, mix with cool-season spring annuals and evergreens for continuous color. In central Texas, Baby Blue-eyes (Nemophila phacelioides), Widows Tears (Commelina spp.), False Dayflower (Tinantia anomala), Violet Ruellia (Ruellia nudiflora), and sedges (Carex spp.) are good companion plants for shady areas.

Image Gallery:

18 photo(s) available

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb
Leaf Retention: Semi-evergreen
Leaf Arrangement: Opposite
Leaf Complexity: Simple
Leaf Shape: Deltoid
Leaf Pubescence: Strigose
Leaf Margin: Serrate
Inflorescence: Axillary
Fruit Type: Achene
Size Notes: 6-12 inches high
Leaf: medium green
Size Class: 0-1 ft.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: Yellow
Bloom Time: Mar , Apr , May , Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep , Oct , Nov
Bloom Notes: Will bloom year-round in frost-free regions.


USA: AL , AZ , AR , FL , GA , HI , LA , NM , TX
Native Distribution: Native to eastern Mexico and south to south-central Texas. Non-native elsewhere in Texas and USA.
Native Habitat: Woodlands, fields, meadows, often in disturbed soils

Growing Conditions

Water Use: Low , Medium
Light Requirement: Sun , Part Shade , Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist , Dry
Drought Tolerance: High
Heat Tolerant: yes
Soil Description: Well-drained sand, loam, clay, caliche, calcareous preferred
Conditions Comments: Evergreen in areas with mild or no winter, deciduous in areas with cold winters. Sometimes struggles with heavy fallen tree leaves that dont decompose quickly.


Use Ornamental: A good shade groundcover with small, yellow daisy flowers. Also does well in full sun.
Use Wildlife: Attracts small butterflies
Interesting Foliage: yes
Attracts: Butterflies
Nectar Source: yes

Last Update: 2015-10-29