Flowers and Plants

Gerbera Daisy Key Facts

Gerbera Daisies are among the most gorgeous houseplants you can grow in your home. They are famous for their bright colored flowers that can be so stunning and vivid that they can leave you speechless. It is therefore not surprising that so many people like to grow these beautiful plants in their homes or gardens.

The first thing you need to know about these plants is that Gerbera is a large genus that belongs to the same family as sunflowers (Asteraceae). These plants are native to South Africa but today they can be found all over the world.

Since Gerbera Daisies are so popular, there was a lot of breeding in the past that resulted in the gorgeous, daisy-like flowers that people like so much. Initially, these plants were bred to be cut flowers. In fact, they are among the most popular cut flowers in the world even to this day. However, more and more people choose to grow them in their homes and gardens.

A great thing about these plants is that they can be grown both from seed or plant, so you can choose the method that suits you best. Keep in mind that these are great houseplants as well as outdoor plants but they are not frost hardy. In other words, if you live in a cold climate it is best to grow them indoors, in containers and pots.

Gerbera Daisy is also known under other names: Transvaal Daisy and Barberton Daisy. Do not be confused is you see these names mentioned in the books or online: it is the same species of plants in question.

Most of the time, Gerbera Daisies are grown as annuals or potted plants, but this is not the only way to go. Keep in mind that Gerbera Daisies are actually perennial plants. You might be able to grow them for at least several years.

Plant Description

Gerber Daisies are gorgeous pants you can grow both inside the home and outside in your garden. They are mainly grown for their beautiful flowers, though they also have gorgeous leaves and can look very beautiful even when they are not in full bloom.

This plant has large flower heads with rayed petals that go around a central disk. The disk is typically green or black in color and it actually consists of tiny flowers. The petals themselves come in many different colors, which makes these plants very vibrant. Typical colors go from cream and other pale pastels to vibrant yellow, orange and red. There are also flowers that are bi-colored.

Leaves of this plant form basal rosettes. The rosettes slowly spread from the base. The leaves are gently fuzzy and often toothed. The foliage is lobed or pinnate. Gerbera Daisies have very beautiful leaves that go great with their colorful blooms.

Main Classes of Gerbera Daisies

There are many different varieties of Gerbera Daisies you can grow. These plants come in 4 main classes:

  • Single flowers. This is the main class of Gerbera Daisies. These plants have either one or two layers of petals.
  • Semi-double flowers. This class of Gerbera Daisies have a row of short petals surrounding the center disk. The popular cut gerbers are typically semi-double flower plants.
  • Double flowers. This class of Gerbera Daisies come with multiple layers of petals. Typically, they have around 5 to 7 layers of petals. These plants look more like dahlias or zinnias than daisies. Keep this in mind if you wish to grow double flowers Gerbera Daisies in your home or garden.
  • Spider flowers. This unusual class of Gerbera Daisies have more pointed, thinner petals.

Gerbera Daisies Mature Size

Many people who wish to grow Gerbera Daisies in their home or garden ask about the mature size of these plants. This is a very good question, because this is the only way to know how much space your plants will take. This is particularly important if you wish to grow Gerbera Daisies in containers indoors.

However, it is also important to know their size if you want to grow them outside in the garden because you need to know how much room they require and how much space you need to leave between individual Gerbera Daisies when planting.

It is not easy to answer how big can Gerbera Daisies grow, since that depends a lot on the variety. Generally speaking, Gerbera Daisies can grow anything from 10 to 18 inches (24-45 cm) in height. However, there are mini varieties that typically grow around 8 inches. On the other hand, there are some larger varieties that can grow as high as 24 inches.

Typically, Gerbera Daisies spread to the area of 1 to 2 feet (30-60 cm). Keep this in mind if you want to grow more Gerbera Daisies in the garden: you need to give each individual plant some space to grow. This is the only way to make your Gerbera Daisies thrive.

Flowering Period

Most people grow Gerbera Daisies for their flowers, so it’s not surprising that everybody wants to know about the blooming period. This depends slightly on the variety but generally speaking, Gerber Daisies flower from early summer all the way to through the frost in colder climates.

In warmer climates, Gerbera Daisies can bloom all year long. However, they tend to give the richest and most beautiful flowers in the period from fall to spring.

Hardiness Zones

Before growing any plants, it is important to know about the hardiness zones they can survive in. This is particularly important if you wish to grow your Gerbera Daisies outdoors. However, even if you intend it to be a houseplant it is important to check what kind of temperatures and other climate conditions it can survive.

When it comes to Gerbera Daisies, they are hardy to U.S. zones 8 to 11. It means that they will need some winter protection if you live in zone 8. Keep this in mind when deciding where to plant your Gerbera Daisy. If you live in a cold climate it might be best to grow Gerbera Daisies indoors, as potted plants.

The Best Varieties to Grow

Your choice of the Gerbera Daisy variety to grow will largely depend on your preferences and climate conditions (if you wish to grow them outside, in your garden). However, there are some recommended varieties that are relatively easy to care for. These Gerbera Daisies will not take a lot of your time but will reward you with gorgeous, bright flowers in vivid colors.

The most common species of Gerbera Daisies is Gerbera jamesonii, also known as the Transvaal or Barberton Daisy. This is a very popular houseplant or garden plant. A great thing about this species is that it comes in many different varieties you can choose. Many times, you will be able to start growing your Gerbera Daisy straight from the seed. In fact, most of the seeds sold are of the Gerbera jamesonii.

Out of these, perhaps the most popular variety is Jaguar. This is a gorgeous plant that can give stunning flowers. You can purchase Jaguar seeds in individual colors or in many different combinations, depending on your taste.

If you are looking for a smaller variety, then smaller flowered Gerbera (Gerber minis), might be the right one for you. It is getting increasingly popular these days, so chances are that you won’t have a problem finding it in your garden center or online. These mini Gerbera Daisies come in a wide variety of colors so you can have just the ones you like the most. A good thing about this variety is that you can grow it directly from seed.

If you want to purchase an already grown-plant, you have even more choice. Since a lot of Gerbera breeding is done through tissue culture, you have others doing this complex job for you and you can buy an already grown, beautiful plant for your home.

Photo credit: blackpictures Gerbera via photopin (license)