Gerbera daisies come in a large variety of colors such as red, pink, orange, cream, white, purple and pink and in 30 different varieties. They are a great flower for use in landscaping, gift giving, and weddings or other special occasions.
Whether you are growing them indoors in pots or the outdoor flower bed, gerberas are easy to grow and care for. Unless you live in USDA zone 8-11, gerbera daisies are considered to be an annual plant and will need replanting every year.
How to Grow Gerbera Daisies
Gerbera daisies grow best in warm conditions, and especially well at about 75F/24C degrees. They will freeze if the temperature goes below 43F/6C minimum night temperatures. Potted Gerbera daisy plants will need to be brought indoors if the temperatures at night get that low. Put the plants in a greenhouse or inside a house to avoid freezing. Gerberas prefer full sun conditions.
While you’ll need to be mindful of colder weather, gerbera daisies love heat and don’t mind harsh, bright sunlight. Gerberas also like a humidity of about 65 per cent, especially if they are in full sun. A light shade during the hottest part of the day will keep gerberas from burning up if you live in a very hot climate.
Starting Your Gerberas from Seed in Pots
Your pot should be a minimum of 5 inches deep and wide to give your plants room to grow. Next, you need to:
- Fill the pots with potting soil and water the soil thoroughly with water soluble fertilizer. After planting the seeds and the initial watering, only fertilize the pot of gerberas every two weeks.
- Choose about five seeds from the packet and place them about 2 ½ inches deep. Keep the seeds planted about 12 inches apart.
- If the soil you are using is hard, loosen it with peat moss or sand. Keep the seeds well-watered and keep the soil moist around the seeds.
- Your gerbera daisy seedling should appear within two to three weeks. Once the plants have reached the size where they have two sets of true leaves, you can transplant them if desired. You may gradually put the plants outdoors as the weather warms hardened off and the weather is consistently over 43F at night.
How to Care for Gerbera Daisies in Pots
Once your plants have been transplanted or reached maturity, keep them moderately moist. Don’t let water pool under the plants or on top of the soil. Enjoy the blooms as they appear. Once the blossoms die, cut them off. Sometimes gerberas repeat bloom when the dead blooms are cut back.
If you are in a warm climate, keep your plants alive by watering them only when dry until they begin to bloom the following blooming season again.
Planting Mature Gerbera Daisies Outdoors
Many people choose to buy several full grown gerbera daisies from their favorite nursery. If you have a short growing season, or if you want color NOW, purchasing a fully grown Gerbera plant is just the ticket. Plant mature gerbera daisy plants for quick results for cut flowers, to beautify your surroundings and to give you instant color and beauty in your flower beds.
Gerbera daisies remain one of the sturdiest plants you can grow. Here’s how to provide your newly transplanted gerbera daisy plants for the best results:
- If your gerberas have been in a greenhouse or started indoors, place them outdoors for an increasingly longer period during the day when the weather warms up. This process, called “hardening off” will get your daisies used to being outside without causing the plants any harm.
- Choose an area for planting located in full sun during the majority of the day.
- Loosen the soil in the area the plants are to be planted to a depth of 8 to 10 inches.
- Add any peat moss or compost needed to make the soil less compact if needed.
- While tilling the soil, add any dry fertilizer recommended for flowers to the bottom of the hole you dig for the plant. In most cases, you’ll only need to add this fertilizer and no others during the plant’s blooming season. Or add an inch or two of manure at the bottom of the hole you prepared before placing the plant in the ground to feed the huge blooms of the gerbera.
- Dig the hole for the plant. Make the hole two times as large as the root ball. Bury the plant so that ½ inch to 1 inch of the crown is above the dirt. Water in thoroughly.
- Keep your gerberas evenly watered. Don’t overwater the gerberas and don’t let them dry out completely.
- Before you know it, you’ll have glorious gerbera daisies to enjoy.
What to Plant with Gerbera Daisies
Pretty much every plant looks great with gerbera daisies. You have several choices to make before planting other plants with gerberas, however. It’s always a safe bet to have a large section of the garden planted only with gerberas.
But if you have a smaller garden or want more variety, choose from the following plants to add to your gerbera bed or flower pots, such as:
Choose a complimentary color. Blue, white, purple and red petunias look great planted at the base of a gerbera daisy or two. The variety of flower shapes makes petunias and gerberas an attractive combination.
Blue, pink and white ageratum is delicate and softens the intense statement that gerberas can make in the garden. The blue varieties’ blooms last longest and are the most reliable, however.
Salvia comes in a variety of colors, especially blue, though they come in white red and yellow. The spire-like shape is a direct contrast to the round shape of the gerberas, making a striking contrast in your garden or flower pots.
Portulaca grandiflora or moss roses aren’t roses, but a succulent that comes in reds, salmons, pinks, purples and yellows. They grow very close to the ground, enjoy full sun, and make a complimentary blend with gerbera daisies.
Sunflowers are no longer merely giant seed-producing flowers, but come in a huge variety of colors and sizes to suit any flower bed. Put your favorite variety of maroon or golden sunflower variety in the background behind you gerberas to catch the eyes of your neighbors.
Coleus remains a striking annual that grows well both indoors and outdoors. Buy an all green variegated variety or one of the red and green varieties to your gerbera beds or indoor pots for a stunning combination of colors.
Shasta daisies. The contrast of creamy Shasta daisies and brightly colored gerberas
If you haven’t grown gerbera daisies, try some of the showy plants indoors in pots or your garden this gardening season. You’ll be impressed with how easy the flowers are to grow, the glorious flowers they produce, and the flair they add to your flower garden.
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