APRIL’S birth flower, the daisy, comes in many colours and sizes. Its name is derived from the Olde English “day’s eye” as this flower closes at night and opens at the first touch of the sun.Daisies symbolise a number of things — innocence and purity which stems from an old Celtic legend that whenever an infant died, the gods sprinkled daisies over the earth to cheer up the parents.In Norse mythology, the daisy is the sacred flower of Freya who is the goddess of love, beauty, and fertility, and as such the daisy came to symbolise childbirth, motherhood, and new beginnings. The flower also mean chastity and transformation — thanks to the Roman myth of Vertumnus and Belides. Vertumnus, god of seasons and gardens, became enamored with Belides, a nymph, and relentlessly pursued her. In order to escape his affections she turned herself into a daisy.The word daisy also made its way into slang words and phrases. In the 1800s, the phrase “ups-a-daisy” was commonly used to encourage children to get up when they fell. This eventually became “oopsy daisy” or “whoops-a-daisy” — an exclamation after a stumble or mistake.Daisies can be eaten and are even medicinal. Wild daisy tea is used to treat coughs, bronchitis and inflammation.