Learn everything about Gerbera Daisy Care & Growing to grow this magnificent flowering plant both indoors and outdoors.
Scientific Name: Gerbera jamesonii
Other Names: African daisy, Barberton daisy, Hilton Daisy, Transvaal daisy, Gerbera, Gerber
USDA Hardiness Zones: 8-11
Soil pH: 5.5-7
Gerbera daisies come in a variety of colors, in the beautiful shades of red, purple, pink, yellow, orange, off white, and peach and are a treat to watch. Also, the blooms are long-lasting with the large center eye, and the foliage is light and glossy green. Not to mention, it’s one of the most popular flowers and florist’s favorite.
Taking care of Gerberas growing in the outdoor setting is not difficult, but it can be a bit tricky indoors. Let’s discuss both in detail.
Check out our article on growing gerbera daisy from cuttings here
How to Propagate Gerbera Daisy
There two ways to propagate a gerbera daisy plant, from seeds and root division. If you’ve got an already established plant, multiply that by division. If not, sow the seeds. Sow seeds 1/4 inch deep in individual pots or seed trays, and transplant them once the seedlings germinate two sets of true leaves.
The main benefit of growing gerbera from seeds is you can grow any variety you want, and it’ll be a cheap way to have so many plants. However, it’s always a better option to buy healthy individual gerbera daisy plants from the garden center, if you’re not growing them in large numbers.
Indoor Gerbera Daisy Care
Sunlight is crucial for the Gerberas to bloom, so placing your plant at a location that receives as much sunlight as possible makes sense. Sunny south or west-facing window is an ideal spot.
If summers are hot and temperature touches 100 F in your area, protect the plant from the afternoon sun. During gloomy winters in the absence of natural sunlight, artificial lights will aid in Gerbera’s survival.
Root rot, powdery mildew, and crown rot may affect this plant if gerbera daisy remains in standstill water and soggy soil. To prevent this, make sure to provide adequate drainage holes at the bottom of the pot. Ideally picking a container with drainage is better, but you can also drill holes by yourself if you’re using any DIY planter.
The potting medium should be light and free from any contamination. Plus, it should be rich in organic matter to enhance drainage. Regular potting mix for houseplants should be fine, better if it’s a bit sandy and doesn’t retain moisture. You can make your own potting mix that drains well with the help of this guide.
Gerbera daisy prefers slightly moist growing medium all the time when growing outdoors. But when growing any plant indoors, be extra careful with watering. Water it when the topsoil is a bit dry, thoroughly without wetting the foliage. Don’t water too frequently to keep the soil overly moist all the time as it’ll lead to root rot.
We all want our Gerbera’s to bloom after all that is what makes this plant eye-catchy. Using a fertilizer specifically formed for blooming or a balanced fertilizer will help the plant in the blooming season. You can start feeding the plant from the spring up to early to mid-fall. The feeding instructions are available on the package, follow them.
Feed the plant once in every 2-3 weeks, if you live in a frost-free climate, don’t stop fertilizing in winter. Also, gerberas are prone to iron, manganese, and magnesium deficiency, check out the fertilizer label before buying, better if it contains these micronutrients.
Note: Don’t go for low to no phosphorus fertilizers as suggested on many websites; it can result in slow growth and inferior plants. Check out this article to learn more!
If you are not familiar with this term, it’s the process of removing fading flowers. You can pinch off the stem at the base of the flower or use any sharp tool cut it off. The energy that was previously wasted on the dying and wilted blooms will now be redirected towards new blooms and growth. It’ll also signal plant not to produce seeds and continue producing flowers. Also, the dead and wilting flowers are not aesthetic and provide shelter to bugs.
Transplant the Gerbera in a new pot when it outgrows the old one, you’ll know that as the plant will start to look to big for its old pot. Any pot that’s 2-3 inches larger in diameter than the current one will do.
Don’t forget to ensure drainage holes at the bottom of the new pot too. Provide a base of three inches thick potting mix before placing the plant in the container and filling it up again. The roots should be below the surface of the topsoil.
NOTE: Cut back the rotten or diseased roots before re-potting Gerbera and remove a bit of soil around the root ball to free the roots.
Mites, aphids, and other such typical households pests can trouble the plant apart from that it’s mostly pest free. You can handpick these pests easily or wash the plant with jets of water. Spray an insecticidal soap solution over the plant is also effective.
The early you act the more chance you have of saving the plant from severe damage. So, always be on a lookout for such pests.
Outdoor Gerbera Daisy Care
Morning and early noon sun are ideal for this plant, but prolonged exposure to hot afternoon sun is not suitable. Especially in the scorching summer heat, protecting from the sun in the mid hours of the day is crucial.
Pot Size for Gerbera Daisy
Gerbera daisies usually grow between 6-18 inches tall, depending on the variety. All the varieties can be grown in pots and pot size can be between 6-10 inches deep and wide similarly or more.
Also Read: 110 Container Gardening Tips
The plant won’t tolerate frost so move outdoors only when there is no trace of frost left. Dig a hole about 8-10 inches deep and plant the Gerbera in it. If you plan to plant multiple plants, space them 12-18 inches apart.
Keep the soil slightly moist but wait before watering again until the top 1 inch of soil is dry. Water thoroughly until it starts to seep out from the bottom holes.
Check out the indoor section above to learn how to fertilize gerbera daisy.
Gerbera daisy is perennial in frost-free climates and blooms intermittently at any time of the year in frost-free zones. In cold climates, they can bloom from spring to autumn. You can treat it as an annual or overwinter it indoors as it can’t tolerate freezing temperatures below 30 F (-1).
Mulching and Composting
Add a layer of mulch and compost in gerberas growing outdoors either on the ground or in the pots. Spring and early summer is time to do that. It’ll help the soil to retain moisture and keep it cool during hot weather.
Deadheading of the outdoor Gerbera is done the same way as indoor ones.
Also Read: How to Grow Million Bells Flowers
Gerbera Daisy Benefits
Apart from being the most popular cut flower after roses, carnations, chrysanthemums, and tulips. Its flowers can last long up to 14 days in vases.
Also, gerbera daisy is one of the best air purifying plants and known to remove benzene, formaldehyde, and trichloroethylene according to the NASA study. The plant, when in bloom promotes happiness due to its colorful blooms.
Also Read: How to Grow Safflower