The Gerbera is a variety of colorful daisies. They have quite a bit of a profile, you can’t miss them, and it’s no surprise that a lot of professionals, as well as backyard gardeners, prefer the Gerbera daisy. It’s very colorful and adds a dynamic element to any kind of flower garden regardless of its size. If you have an open space at the back of your home or in your front yard and you want to dd a bit of color and personality to the area, you can’t go wrong with the gerbera flower.
Also known as Gerber or Transvaal daisies. They have long symbolized purity and innocence. People also associate this flower with ideas of beauty and cheerfulness. It’s not surprising because if you have a garden full of Gerberas and other greenery, you can’t help but feel relaxed. This amazing backyard scene is a great stress reliever. There is also something inherently charming about this flower.
Gerbera Daisy Facts
|Plant Family||Asteraceae (Daisy Family)|
|Native||South Africa; Also found in South America and Asia|
|Color||Yellow; Orange; White; Pink and Lavender.|
|Other Names||Transvaal daisy, Gerbera Jamesonii, Barberton daisy|
|Blooming season||Spring through Autumn|
|Uses||Mainly used as decorative flower plants in the garden and as cut flower.|
|Interesting Facts||The plants was named after German doctor Traugott Gerber.|
It is the 5th most popular cut flower variety in the world.
How do you care for a Gerbera plant?
This variety of daisy is very vulnerable to pests and other plant problems.
The plant can develop grey mildew when it’s too damp outside. If you live in a humid part of the country, the Gerbera’s leaves will become covered with nasty grey mildew. This will then start infecting the stems and roots and will cause the plant problems until it dies.
The flowers can also get infected and it usually shows up as brown spots. To prevent it, do not wet the flowers when you water the plant. In other words, direct your hydration where it needs to go which is at the base of the stem.
Aphids can also threaten Gerberas. These are also known as plant lice. Aphids can suck up the nutrients of the plant until they become stunted or they die. Thankfully, these pests are quite weak to even the mildest herbicides. So if you can get your hands on the most natural or organic type of herbicides, you can make your aphid problem go away without leaving nasty chemical residues in your garden to worry about later on.
Ideal temperature range for Gerberas
This plant thrives between seventy to seventy-five degrees Fahrenheit. It can be hardy when it comes to temperature since it can tolerate cold as low as thirty degrees Fahrenheit. However, it is susceptible to frost. Once it appears, it can get damaged quickly. This is why it’s a good idea to keep Gerberas when you are in a climate zone that is between forty to seventy degrees Fahrenheit.
You may also want to wait until you are sure the last frost of the season has passed before cultivating gerberas.
You only need to water the Gerbera daisies once a week but when you do, make sure you water extensively. The standard is to water eight inches deep into the soil since they tend to grow deep roots. Don’t worry about pooling water. As long as the water drains to the roots, you should be fine. If you are planting in pots, make sure that it has good drain because keeping the potting mixture too soggy can rot the plant.
In the summertime, when the temperature goes up to eighty-five degrees or higher, you need to double your watering to twice a week. Otherwise, your plants will dry out.
You can quickly test if your soil is moist enough by doing a simple finger test. If you poke your finger into your soil and notice that it is moist and cool to the touch, your soil has enough moisture. But if your finger doesn’t get wet in the slightest, this is a sign that you need to water your soil.
On the other hand, you can also use this ‘finger test’ to see if you have over watered your soil. If your finger comes up with some mud or quite a bit of soil stuck to it, this is an indication that your soil is too wet and doesn’t drain well enough.
Gerberas love the sun and will do well under direct sunlight even in the afternoon. Put them under the shade for at least two to three hours a day when keeping them indoors. However, place further from the walls or anything that reflect too much heat on to the plant.
Ideally you should put Gerberas indoors in a spot right next to a window.
How do you grow Gerbera daisies?
Buy from Garden Center
This is the easiest and the best option. You could plant the seed or get the plant from a florist. However, Garden centers usually have the best Gerbera plants available.
Look for a healthy plant with deep green leaves and white color roots. You might also want to take a good look at the underside of the leaves to avoid plants infected by insects.
Planting the seed
Plant them during the early spring. For best results, you can plant them indoors and transplant them to your garden outside when the weather is warmer.
To germinate the Gerbera daisy seeds, put the potting mix into a seed tray, spray it with water to moisten, poke quarter-inch holes all over the tray, drop a seed in each hole facing downwards, and cover with soil. Water them with the mist again and cover the tray with plastic wrap. Then put it somewhere it can get a lot of sunlight for eight hours straight.
With that said, choose an indirect sunny spot because you do not want to dry it out. After about two to three weeks, your Gerbera seeds will sprout.
When you have two sets, put them in a sunny area with shade in the afternoon and add compost to the soil where you will transfer them. Dig holes by hand to fit the root ball of the Gerberas twelve to eighteen inches apart. Place the baby plants and cover the roots with soil completely. Pack it in, water deeply, and avoid getting the leaves wet.
Again, the secret to Gerbera watering is to aim the water directly at the roots as much as possible. This means hydrate only at the base of the stem.