Even experienced gardeners do not always understand how to care for a gerbera daisy, given its capriciousness. Gerberas are bright plants, similar in flowers to chamomile. They are grown in gardens and greenhouses for cutting and arranging bouquets, but you can also get this flower at home. For the plant to take root, it is worth following some simple rules for caring for it at home. Today we are going to talk about how to grow gerbera daisies and how to care for them to get beautiful and healthy plants that will delight not only you but all your guests.
What Is a Gerbera Daisy
Gerberas are a genus of perennial herbs of the Asteraceae family. There are several dozen species, most of which grow in Africa (primarily in South Africa and Madagascar), some species are also found in tropical Asia.
What Do Gerbera Daisies Look Like
Gerbera combines the modest appearance of chamomile and the large range of colors in which the flowers are painted. These are herbaceous perennials that are successfully grown in open ground, on the windowsill, and in greenhouses. In many landscaping projects and bouquet designs, a colorful flower is an essential component. In a basal rosette, elongated pinnately divided leaves of luscious green hue are gathered. The root system has matured nicely. Fluff covers the bases of the leaf plate, peduncles, and petioles in several species. The flower bears classic aster inflorescences, which are baskets on long, leafless peduncles that can reach 60 cm in length. Gerbera inflorescences vary in size according to the cultivar. There are little blooms up to 4 cm in diameter and big blossoms up to 15 cm in diameter. After flowering, the plant produces achene, which is a kind of fruit.
How to Care for Gerbera Daisies
The gerbera should be grown in soil that is somewhat wet. These flowers adore the golden mean and will not tolerate the soil drying up or becoming waterlogged. Watering should be done twice a week on average, although precipitation and air temperature should be considered. Water often and generously during vigorous development and budding. When the buds start to blossom, the amount of watering is reduced. Light loosening should be done after absorbing rainwater to ensure that the roots receive enough oxygen and do not become waterlogged. Watering should be done under the root using water that has been warmed in the sun. Early in the morning is the best time to water your plants. If water droplets fall on leaves or buds during moistening, they will not hurt the plant since the moisture will have time to evaporate before the onset of heat. The evening operation is not recommended owing to the risk of root undercooling.
Fading inflorescences should be removed as soon as possible to extend gerbera blooming and induce the setting of new peduncles. But keep in mind that they are not cut off, but broken out at the base or twisted out.
Does Gerbera Daisy Need Full Sun?
Well, gerberas prefer full sun but may tolerate some shade. When the plants cease flowering due to decreasing light levels, it’s time to relocate them. Choose a location that gets six to eight hours of sun every day. Improve the water and nutrient retention of sandy soils by adding organic matter.
Your gerbera daisies’ fertilizer requirements are determined by the quality of your soil. Monthly feeding with a water-soluble fertilizer is advised to keep the blooms flowering throughout summer. Alternatively, you might apply organic compost around the roots every month.
Temperature and Humidity
Gerbera daisies thrive in USDA hardiness zones 8 through 11, however in zone 8, where most gardeners grow them as annuals or potted plants, they will require winter protection. They can bloom with a winter temperature of 45 to 50 degrees Fahrenheit, which is chilly but not frigid. Gerbera daisy also doesn’t require any specific humidity.
How to Propagate Gerbera Daisies
How to Grow Gerbera Daisy from Seed
If you want to grow gerbera daisies from seeds, start them indoors around 12 to 18 weeks before your region’s last frost date. Gerbera daisies dislike having their roots disturbed by transplanting, therefore sowing seeds in peat or paper pots is an excellent option. Instead of burying the seeds beneath the dirt, gently press them onto the surface – they require light to sprout successfully.
To keep the soil and exposed seeds moist, cover your gerbera daisy seedlings with plastic wrap or a lid. Wait two to four weeks for the seeds to germinate in a warm, sunny location (a temperature range of 70 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit is ideal).
After all the threat of frost has gone, you can move your seedlings outside. Plant the seedlings in the ground so that the crown is 1/2 inch above the soil level in a well-draining location with excellent light exposure.
Growing Gerbera Daisy from Cuttings
- Take a 6-8 inch gerbera daisy cutting from a healthy plant. Make careful not to cut too deeply, since this might badly harm the donor plant.
- Remove any blooms or buds at the top of the stem, as well as all the lower leaves.
- Dip the cut end of a gerbera cutting into a rooting hormone before planting it in a pot with good potting soil.
- Mist the soil lightly with water and cover the cutting with a plastic bag. To keep the moisture in the air, mist it every day.
- Place the container where it will receive both direct and indirect light, as well as warmth. After 10-14 days, gently remove the cutting from the pot. If it resists, it means it has developed roots, and you may now put it in a separate pot.
How to Keep Gerbera Daisy Blooming
Gerbera daisies, like many other repeat bloomers, benefit greatly from pruning and deadheading. Throughout the growing season, it’s important to keep the plant well-maintained, which includes removing any dead or diseased leaves and fading blossoms.
If you find a flower stalk is withering, prune it back to where it intersects with the leaves (if you want to remove the dying bud before it goes to seed). Prune your gerbera daisies back to approximately one inch above soil level before the first forecasted frost in your region.
Fertilizer is also necessary for a healthy blossoming process. Though your specific fertilizer requirements may vary depending on the condition of your soil, most gerbera daisy plants should be fed bi-weekly with a phosphorus-rich combination.
Is Gerbera Daisy Poisonous?
Humans will not experience signs of plant poisoning if they eat gerbera daisies. Gerber daisies are not harmful to humans, but if eaten, they can trigger allergic reactions. Choking is one of the most serious side effects of plant consumption, and it is especially frequent in children.
Gerber daisies consumed by cats, dogs, and horses have no harmful consequences on their health. Gerber daisies are harmless to animals, according to the ASPCA. However, animals might experience gastrointestinal distress after consuming any form of plant material.
If the plant is accidentally eaten and causes harm to people or animals, see a doctor or a veterinarian as soon as possible. Take a sample of the daisy with you to ensure that the plant is correctly recognized.
Now let’s find out how to plant gerbera daisies.
How to Plant Gerbera Daisy
Excessive wetness can cause crohn’s disease and root rot in gerberas, therefore good soil drainage is essential. Consider planting them in pots or raised beds if the soil does not drain well. Gerberas also prefer soil that has been amended with compost. Once they’ve established roots, their soil moisture requirements are ordinary, but make sure the transplants get enough water when they’re first planted.
When to plant gerbera daisies? After the risk of frost has gone, plant gerbera daisies in the spring. Where to plant gerbera daisies? Plants should be spaced 12 to 18 inches apart, with the plant’s crown at or slightly above the soil level. The place where the stem and roots touch the earth is known as the crown. To limit the spread of foliar diseases, avoid watering when it rains. To prevent the possibility of the crown and root rots, leave the crown to dry out between watering. Keep in mind that watering early in the day can help to prevent fungal disease by allowing the leaves to dry out before evening.
To maintain soil moisture and limit weed development, mulch around the plants with a 2- to 3-inch layer of organic matter such as pine straw or pine bark. Mulching reduces the demand for chemical and mechanical weed control.
Growing gerbera daisy is not as difficult as it might seem at first glance. If you like exotic garden flowers that fill the garden with bright colors, then you will not be able to remain indifferent to the gerbera. This flower is very popular among Dutch gardeners, and for good reason. The beauty of the gerbera is amazing. You can also grow a flower as a home plant, but if you live in warm latitudes with fairly hot summers, then you may well try to breed gerbera in the open field.
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