Phylum: Magnoliophyta - Class: Equisetopsida - Order: Asterales - Family: Asteraceae
One of many 'daisy-like' wildflowers, Scentless Mayweed is perhaps best distinguished by its very finely divided pinnate leaves and the habitat in which it grows. The yellow-centred flowers are compound and have white outer rays on the florets around the perimeter of the central disc. Flower heads are usually 3 to 5cm across. Despite its common name, this flower does have a slight scent and it is rather unpleasant, which helps distinguish it from other similar 'daisies' such as Chamomile which has a pleasant (and much stronger) odour.
This plant, a member of the daisy family Asteraceae, is common and widespread throughout the UK and Ireland and its range extends through most of mainland Europe and into Asia as well as parts of northern Africa. In North America this is an introduced invasive weed of cultivated land.
Scentless Mayweed grows in cultivated field margins as well as on waste land and road verges, often forming dense masses of flowers from May through to November.
A close relative is the Pineapple Mayweed, an interesting flower of well-trodden land; it has finely divided leaves very similar to those of the Scentless Mayweed. It is quite easy to distinguish between the species once the flowers are out: Scentless Mayweed has white outer-ray 'petals' while the flowers of Pineapple Mayweed have no white petals at all.
In Britain and Ireland Scentless Mayweed can usually be seen in flower from May through to November. The photographs shown on this page were taken in West Wales in May and June.