Grow Gerbera Daisy
Gerbera daisy (Gerbera Jamesonii) also known as African daisy, Barberton Daisy, and Transvaal Daisy originates from South Africa, Madagascar to South American and tropical Asia.
Gerbera daisy is known for its bright vivid colors and large daisy-like flowers that grow on bare stems 10-18 inches tall. It is hardy in zones 9-10 and usually grown as an annual or tender perennial that can be brought inside during the winter. This eye-catching flower attracts bees and butterflies. In a NASA study for indoor air improvement, Gerbera proved effective in removing chemical vapors and toxic gases.*
Soil and location
Plant gerbera daisy in a sunny location protected from the hot afternoon sun. Full sun is best for more flower production. It should be planted in rich well-drained soil when the night temperatures are in the 40’s at night. As with many plants, they don’t like wet, soggy soil. If you have clay soil, one that holds moisture and stays wet, you will need to amend the soil by adding organic material such as peat moss, compost,etc. to improve drainage. If the soil cannot be amended, then a raised bed or container is suggested. Plant the crowns above the soil level, too deep will invite crown rot.
Water early in the day and allow it to dry slightly between watering. Avoid overhead watering. Improper watering and poor drainage will lead to problems such as crown rot and poor flower production.
Feed monthly with a 1/2 strength balanced fertilizer and every two weeks during the flowering period (spring and summer). Maintain the plant by removing spent flowers and old leaves.
Gerbera daisy can be started from seed 10-20 weeks before the last frost. No pretreatment is required. After collection, seeds should be germinated within 1-2 months. They may even reseed themselves during the summer. Keep in mind that plants grown from seed may differ from the parent plant. You can also divide the plant in the spring or take basal cuttings in the summer and dip in rooting hormone.
Not only is Gerbera daisy attractive in the garden or as a potted plant; they are also a favorite cut flower. The long vase life of up to 14 days and a myriad of available colors make this a favorite for floral designers. Hybridizers have produced hundreds of varieties with almost every color available except for blue and purple.
*Eco Friendly House Plants/Wolverton
Problems: Thrips, leafminer, spider mite, caterpillar, botrytis, powdery mildew, fungal rot and crown rot.