Sunday, November 29, 2009

Easy-growing Gerberas

I planted some vividly coloured Gerberas (also known as Barberton daisy or Transvaal Daisy) a couple of years ago and am starting to see great results as the plants clump and produce lots of blooms.

The species is indigenous to South Africa’s Mpumalanga Province and its common name arose from the old gold‑rush town of Barberton, where it grows in great profusion. In its natural environment Gerbera jamesonii grows in well‑drained soil in grassland areas.

If grown in the right conditions, the plants will flower for many months through summer and into winter. Although these daisies grow best in sheltered, frost‑free positions, they will tolerate some frost. The soil should be well drained, and mixed with plenty of organic material. If the soil in your garden is heavy, compensate by raising the beds 15‑30 cm above ground level and mixing some river sand into the soil.

Gerbera daisies are among the best and most attractive flowers for cutting, but they should be cut a day or two before they are to be displayed, because the flowers tend to close up the night after they are cut. To make the flowers last longer you should dip the ends of their stems in boiling water after cutting.

There is a full profile on Gerbera daisies with good growing tips on my website Drop by now to find out just how easy it is to grow these magnificent plants.

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