Information About Gerbera Daisies


Gerbera Houseplants: Tips For Growing Gerbera Daisies Indoors

By Mary H. Dyer, Credentialed Garden Writer

Gerbera daisies are relatively simple to grow outdoors, but growing gerbera daisies indoors can be tricky. However, if you can provide the right growing conditions, your gerbera daisy may survive for two or three years. This article will help.


GERBERAS

Gerbera is a genus of the family of sunflowers, Daisies and Asters - Asteraceae, with a wide distribution from Africa to Madagascar, tropical Asia and South America. Through hybridization, Gerberas are available in a massive array of colors.

Kingdom Plantae Division Magnoliophyta Class Magnoliopsida Order Asterales Family Asteraceae Subfamily Mutisioideae Genus Gerbera

The meanings of gerbera flowers stem from those attributed to the general daisy family. These meanings include innocence and purity. Daisies are also a classic symbol of beauty however, the gerbera variety holds an added meaning of cheerfulness, which stems from the assortment of colors available.

Some Interesting Facts About Gerberas

  • Having a long vase life, Gerbera flowers are widely used in the Cut Flower Industry. Gerberas are great flowers for adding color to any room or garden.
  • Gerberas are also referred to as Gerbera Daisies, daisy being a general name for all species in the family Asteraceae, to which Gerberas belong.
  • Gerbera flowers often measure 7 inches (17.8 cm) across.
  • Gerberas come in a wide range of colors - from light to dark yellow, orange, pink, brilliant scarlet, deep red, and many more.
  • Gerberas can be used in landscapes as bedding plants for borders and flower beds or as Cut Flowers for table arrangements.
  • Gerberas are native to Transvaal, South Africa.
  • Hybrid Gerbera varieties cloned through tissue culture are uniform, and have long-lasting flowers with thick peduncles that are not light sensitive hence, flowers remain open in the dark, lending themselves to indoor use in flower arrangements.

About Gerbera Flower

Gerberas are perennial flowering plants featuring a large capitulum with striking, 2-lipped ray florets. The capitulum on the Gerberas has the appearance of a single flower, but is actually a cluster of hundreds of individual flowers. The morphology of the flowers varies depending on their position in the capitulum of the Gerberas.

Various Forms of Gerbera Flowers

Gerberas come in various forms. Broadly, they can be put into four groups-

  • Single Flowers - These Gerberas have a row of non-overlapping petals (ray florets) with a green center (disc florets). These are the most common gerberas available in the market.
  • Double or duplex - These Gerberas have a double row of overlapping petals with a green, black, or dark red eye.
  • Crested doubles - These doubles contain two rows of overlapping petals with one or more inner rows of shorter petals with a green, black, or dark red eye.
  • Full crested doubles - These have solid overlapping rows of petals with an inner row diminishing in size, covering the eye entirely.

Growing Gerberas

  • The most inexpensive way to produce gerberas is from seed obtained from reputable seed suppliers.
  • Seeds should be germinated in an artificial growing medium. Germinating seeds in field sand or field sand mixed with materials such as perlite and/or peat moss is not recommended because field sand is usually not sterile. Artificial growing media that are sterile, lightweight, and have good water retention capacity and drainage can be purchased in garden supply stores. These materials often have fertilizers incorporated.
  • The medium can be placed in flats or pots that have drainage holes. Make shallow rows in the medium approximately twice the depth of the diameter of the seed, sow seeds in the rows, cover lightly with extra medium and water carefully.
  • After seeds are planted and watered, cover the container with a sheet of glass or clear plastic and place the germination container approximately 18 inches (45.7 cm) below a fluorescent light. Check the medium daily for moisture and for signs of seed germination.
  • The medium should never be allowed to dry, especially when gerbera seeds are starting to germinate. When watering is necessary, apply a sufficient amount to allow excess water to drain out of the container. Any water that collects in the saucer beneath the germination container should be discarded.
  • Tall and spindly seedlings can be avoided by transplanting seedlings to small pots as soon as the first true leaves appear. Seedlings can be grown in small pots until they are large enough to transplant into flower beds.

Interested in finding books on growing flowers online? Good books on Gardening are a great asset for gardeners at all levels of expertise.


Gerberas

Gerberas are becoming fashionable again, particularly as cut flowers. Gone are the narrow petals and insipid pale orange and salmon flowers. Available now are gerberas in vibrant new hues with broad petals in double and semi-double forms. As well as improving flowers, plant breeders have developed a range of more compact plants for the instant potted colour market.

Cultivated gerberas (Gerbera jamesonii) are derived from a wild South African daisy sometimes referred to as the Transvaal or Barberton daisy.

Preferred growing conditions

Gerberas are perennials and do best in full sun, in well-drained soil. They will grow in most parts of Australia but are happiest in a warm climate. In cool or moist areas plants need excellent drainage and shelter from the cold. If your soil is poorly drained, grow the plants in a raised garden bed. If you experience wet autumns and winters plant gerberas where they will keep dry during the colder months.

Care

Gerberas are susceptible to fungal disease (sclerotium stem rot and phytophthora are two diseases which attack gerberas) so must have very well drained soils. Clean up plants by regularly removing diseased leaves and spent flower stalks. Fertilise once a month in spring and summer to encourage vigorous growth and plenty of big flowers. Reduce watering in autumn and winter.

Getting started

1. From seed. Gerberas can be raised from seed planted in spring or early summer.

2. Crowns. Divide up your own gerbera clumps in late summer or autumn outside the tropics, or all year round in northern Australia.

Planting tip: When planting gerberas make sure that the crown (the part of the plant from which the new growth arises) is 1-2cm (1″) above the soil level. This will reduce the likelihood of disease such as rots which affect the crown and stems.

3. Potted plants. A wide range of gerberas should be available at your nursery, especially in warmer climates.

Cut flowers

As cut flowers gerberas are available at florist shops most of the year. If you are growing gerberas yourself, you can pick your own flowers. Pick flowers that are fully open. As cut flowers gerberas should last 10 to 14 days.

Picking tip: Careless picking can leave behind a spot that can become infected. Instead of cutting the stem, waggle it at its base until it pulls away cleanly. To arrange the flower cut off the hairy white part on the bottom of the stem, or the flower won’t be able to absorb any water.


Arctotis Grandis also is known as the “Blue-Eyed African Daisy” has satiny-white petals with a hint of blue and a very distinct blue center.

  • Plant in early spring
  • Fairly drought-resistant and do not require a lot of watering
  • Protect from frost
  • Full sun
  • Free draining soil


How to Grow Gerbera Daisies from Seed

Gerbera daisies make a beautiful addition to any garden.

Gerbera daisies are a little tricky to grow from seed, but it definitely can be done. Follow these tips for propagating and growing Gerbera daisies from seed in your garden.

    Collect Viable Seeds: This is the most important tip! Your Gerbera daisy blossom will soon start to look like a dandelion, covered in seeds, but most of those seeds aren’t viable. The seeds look kind of like little brooms, with a hairy brush at one end and the seed at the other. Sort through the seeds, and choose only the ones with a fat, fertilized seed pod.

Unfertilized Gerbera daisy seeds (left), and viable Gerbera daisy seeds (right).

How to Plant and Grow Gerbera Daisy Seeds

Preparing to plant daisy seeds. Step #1: Prepare Trays: Fill trays or pots with a light seed starting medium, or make your own mix using peat moss, perlite, and vermiculite. Dampen the medium with water.

Step #2: Plant Seeds: Use a toothpick to poke a hole in the planting medium. Plant the Gerbera daisy seeds with the seed end pointing down, and the little brush part just barely at the top of the soil.

Step #3: Grow Seeds: Keep the seeds moist, but not waterlogged, and above 70° F, with eight hours or more of bright light per day. The easiest way to do this is to cover the trays with a clear plastic tent and place them indoors in a bright window or under grow lights. When the Gerbera daisy seeds germinate in two to three weeks, remove the plastic cover but keep the seedlings moist.

Gerbera daisy seedling. Step #4: Transplant Seedlings: After the Gerbera daisy seedlings have developed two sets of true leaves, you can carefully transplant the plants to larger pots.

Step #5: Harden Plants: When it’s consistently warm outside, and the Gerbera daisy plants are hardy and growing, move the pots outdoors to a protected spot for a few days to get the young plants used to the breezes and temperature shifts found outside.

Step #6: Enjoy Flowers: At this point, you can leave the daisies in their pots or plant them in the yard. Locate the plants in a spot with plenty of morning sun and a little afternoon shade to keep them from wilting. Feed the plants regularly with a balanced organic fertilizer, and keep them watered but not soggy.

Beautiful Gerbera daisy flowers can brighten up any garden.


Watch the video: Simplest Way to GrowPropagate Gebera from Cuttings


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