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gerbera

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BOTANICAL NAME
Gerbera jamesonii
(GUR-bur-uh  jaym-SO-nee-eye)
(also JUR-bur-uh, jur-BEE-ruh,
gur-BEE-ruh and JAYM-sun-eye)

COMMON NAMES
Transvaal daisy, Barberton daisy,
African daisy, Veldt daisy

DESCRIPTION
Gerberas’ large daisylike (composite) blooms, including single, double, semidouble, quilled and crested flower types, generally range from 2 to 31⁄2 inches in diameter and stand on leafless stems above a base of crinkly, deeply lobed leaves. The newer, compact varieties of potted Gerberas usually reach 6 to 12 inches in height, depending on pot size, which range from 4 to 6 inches.

COLORS
Gerberas are available in a variety of warm, usually vibrant, hues including reds, pinks, orange/peach/salmon/apricot, yellows and cream/ivory/white as well as bicolors.

DECORATIVE LIFE
In ideal environments and with proper care, potted Gerberas’ bloom cycles can span from two to six weeks, depending on variety.

AVAILABILITY
Gerbera plants are available year-round.

IN-STORE AND CONSUMER CARE
LIGHT These plants require bright light, including some exposure to direct sun.
WATER Gerbera plants need moderately moist soil. Water them thoroughly when the soil surface is dry to the touch. Be careful, however, not to overwater, and do not allow pots to stand in water.
TEMPERATURE Moderate temperatures are preferred. When flowering, potted Gerberas like daytime temperatures between 65 F and 70 F and nighttime temperatures from 60 F to 65 F. During the winter, do not expose these plants to temperatures lower than 55 F.
HUMIDITY Gerbera plants prefer humid environments. Place pots on a pebble tray, or mist leaves frequently in spring and summer, if the relative humidity level needs to be raised.
FERTILIZER  Feed potted Gerberas weekly during their blooming cycles.
SOIL Loose, humus-rich soil or a standard soil mix with sand is preferred.
GROOMING Cut off flowers as they fade.
REPOTTING After the first set of blooms fade, weather permitting, transplant the plant into a patio pot, and enjoy for the rest of the season. In colder regions, store the plant indoors or in a greenhouse during the winter months. Some people choose to discard Gerbera plants, which are grown from seed, following their initial blooming cycle.

CHALLENGES
PESTS Watch closely for whiteflies. Treat infested plants with insecticidal soap.
DISEASES Powdery mildew, a fungal growth that appears as a dusty white to gray coating on leaf surfaces or other plant parts, can occur. On indoor plants, powdery mildew can be removed by rubbing the leaves, in most cases. For severe cases, spray the plant with a commercial plant fungicide. In addition, reduce the relative humidity around the plant, and gather and dispose of fallen leaves.
 
 

fun facts


 
 


WHAT'S IN A NAME The genus Gerbera is named after Traugott Gerber, an 18th-century German medical doctor and naturalist who was the director of the oldest botanical garden in Moscow, taught medicine at the university and created a medical garden to educate medical students in herbology.

The species epithet, jamesonii, was given in honor of Robert Jameson (1832-1908), a Scottish condiment manufacturer who collected live specimens of these plants while on a gold prospecting expedition in Barberton, South Africa, in 1884.

HOME SWEET HOME Gerberas are native to South Africa.
 


 

Some information provided by:
Chain of Life Network®, www.chainoflifenetwork.org
Dictionary of Plant Names, by Allen J. Coombes
Flowering & Foliage Plants Book 2 by The John Henry Company
The Houseplant Encyclopedia by Ingrid Jantra and Ursula Kruger
The New House Plant Expert, by Dr. D.G. Hessayon
New Pronouncing Dictionary of Plant Names by Florists’ Review
Stearn’s Dictionary of Plant Names for Gardeners by William T. Stern

 

Super Floral Retailing • Copyright 2009
Florists' Review Enterprises, Inc.