The Q&A Archives: Growing Gerbera Daisy

Question: I am looking for some information on how to grow Gerbera Daisys. I have a couple plants that I purchaced in the store that are doing fine, but they do not look like the magnificent large, long stemmed, cut flowers I love so much that I get from the florist. The plants produce a small, short, single petaled flower. Are they a different species and why can't I find anything in my gardening catalogs about Gerberas of any kind?

Answer: Gerbera jamesonii or Transvaal daisy is native to South Africa. Gerbera's thrive in full sun and rich soil with excellent drainage. They prefer a thorough watering and then dry soil, followed by a flooding again. The plants need frequent feeding during the growing season and will produce new leaves and flowers if the old leaves and flowers are pinched off regularly.

Gerbera daisies are fussy about watering. Try not to splash water on the crown of the plant. Gerbera daisies like the nightime temperature to be about 60F degrees, and the daytime temperature about 75F. The plant will take full morning sunshine, but appreciates some afternoon shade. You may have a new species, but I suspect that the growing conditions are not quite what your plants require to produce the long stems and full flowers you expect. Try giving more light and feeding a little more often.

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