Gerber Daisy

COMMON NAME:  Gerber daisy
GENUS:  Gerbera
SPECIES:  G. jamesonii
FAMILY:  Compositae
BLOOMS:  late spring-summer
TYPE:  perennial
DESCRIPTION:  Large, bright, daisylike flowers are borne on strong, 20-to 24-inch stems. Flowers measure 2 to 2 1/2 inches across and can be single or double. Colors include white, yellow, red, and orange. The leaves are attractive, tongue-shaped, and lobed.
CULTIVATION:  In southern areas, this plant can be left in the ground over the winter if it is protected with mulch. In northern areas, pot it up in the fall and enjoy it indoors. Plant gerbera daisy outdoors in full sun in moist, rich soil. Place the crowns slightly above ground level to keep them from rotting. Water this plant deeply and regularly, but allow the soil to dry slightly between watering. Fertilize it with liquid fertilizer.

Forty-five species of this genus are native to the hottest parts of Africa and Asia. Other common names for G. jamesonii include Transvaal daisy {from its original home, the Transvaal plain} and Barberton daisy.
The genus was named for a German naturalist, Traugott Gerber, who died in 1743. Another great German plant breeder, Robert Diem, specialized in Gerber daisies and became famous for his beautiful specimens of this plant.
Gerber daisies come in many crayon colors and are outstanding because the petals are arranged in such perfect order. Many people think they look almost artificial, so evenly are the plant parts arranged. They make wonderful cut flowers, sometimes lasting as long as three weeks in water. They are economically very important to the flower trade in Holland.


Do not cut the blooms until they are fully open. Once you bring the blossoms indoors, make sure that they stand upright in the water. If they are allowed to lie horizontally for even a short time, the flower heads will droop and the stems will bend.

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