Daisy flower Bellis perennis is a common European species of daisy, of the Asteraceae family, often considered the archetypal species of that name. Many related plants also share the name "daisy", so to distinguish this species from other daisies it is sometimes qualified as common daisy, lawn daisy or English daisy. Historically, it has also been commonly known as bruisewort and occasionally woundwort. Bellis perennis is native to western, central and northern Europe, but widely naturalised in most temperate regions including the Americas and Australasia.
This daisy may be used as a potherb. Young leaves can be eaten raw in salads or cooked, noting that the leaves become increasingly astringent with age. Flower buds and petals can be eaten raw in sandwiches, soups and salads. It is also used as a tea and as a vitamin supplement
Bellis perennis has astringent properties and has been used in herbal medicine. In ancient Rome, the surgeons who accompanied Roman legions into battle would order their slaves to pick sacks full of daisies in order to extract their juice; bellum, Latin for "war", may be the origin of this plant's scientific name. Bandages were soaked in this juice and would then be used to bind sword and spear cuts.
The medicinal properties of Bellis perennis have been recorded in herbals as far back as the 16th century. John Gerard, the 16th century herbalist, recommended English daisy as a catarrh (inflammation of mucous membrane) cure, as a remedy for heavy menstruation, migraine, and to promote healing of bruises and swellings.