Gerberas - Juicy Daisies
Do you know that gerbera is grown not only for cutting, but also as a houseplant? In the fall, from Holland we are supplied with flowering plants of dwarf varieties. In culture, there are both non-terry and terry forms with inflorescences-baskets up to 5 cm in diameter, often incorrectly called flowers. They have a variety of colors and yellow, orange, red, pink and white marginal flowers ("petals") around the yellow center. About the features of growing gerbera at home, read this article.
- Botanical description of the plant
- Gerbera Care
- Gerbera breeding
- Possible difficulties growing gerberas
- Gerbera pests and diseases
Botanical description of the plant
Gerbera (Gerbera) - a genus of perennial herbs of the Astrovian family, or Compositae (Asteraceae) There are several dozen species, most of which grow in Africa (primarily in South Africa and Madagascar), some species are also found in tropical Asia.
Gerbera flowers in shape are similar to flowers of representatives of the genera Nivyanik, Osteospermum and other "daisies"; the color of gerbera flowers can be anything but blue.
Gerberas are grown all over the world (including in greenhouses) as flowering ornamental plants - primarily for cutting, as well as garden plants, sometimes as indoor plants.
Flowering depends on the length of daylight, so the plant usually blooms in late August and blooms until November. Gerbera is a photophilous plant, grows well in a sunny place or in bright diffused lighting.
The temperature is moderate, during flowering - + 16 ... + 20 ° C. In summer, plants are useful to take out on the balcony or ventilate the room well. In winter, after flowering ends and until February, a gerbera is kept at a temperature of + 12 ... + 14 ° C.
Watering and humidity
Watering gerberas should be plentiful, but not excessive. Between watering, an earthen who needs to be allowed to dry slightly. Excessive watering contributes to the development of fungal infections. Humidity is moderate. It is useful to spray the leaves from time to time.
From spring to the end of August, the gerbera is fed with a complex mineral fertilizer (no organic matter) every three weeks.
Gerberas are transplanted as necessary in early spring. Soil - sheet land, peat, sand or sphagnum (2: 1: 1). Never add compost or fresh humus to the soil.
Gerbera is propagated in spring - by seeds at a temperature of + 18 ... + 20 ° C, division of the bush and cuttings.
Gerbera is rarely propagated by seeds (at the same time there is a large spread of characters), it is better to do this by dividing the bush.
Gerbera is divided in the spring at the age of 3-4 years, leaving 2-3 growth points on each dividend; it takes 10-11 months to root the divisions before they begin to bloom.
Sowing gerbera seeds for seedlings is carried out in the spring. The best substrate is soddy, leafy soil and humus in proportion (2: 1: 1) with the addition of sand. Gerbera seedlings dive for the first time in the phase of 2-3 real leaves in boxes, and the second time (with 4-5 real leaves) in individual pots. From sowing gerbera seeds to flowering seedlings usually takes 10-11 months; young plants bloom for 3-4 months.
Possible difficulties growing gerberas
Gerbera loses the brightness of the foliage. The reason is the excess of light. The plant needs shading from the direct sun in the midday hours from spring to autumn.
Fungal diseases appear on the gerbera due to poor ventilation, coupled with increased air humidity.
If a the plant began to turn pale, stretch and lose the appearance that he had when buying, this may indicate that the gerbera does not have enough light, but also that there is a process of adaptation to room conditions.
Waterlogging is very dangerous for gerbera, so watering should be done carefully, especially during dormancy with a cool content.
Despite the fact that the gerbera is photophilous, in the summer, during the hottest midday hours, it is better to remove the pot from the windowsill or to shade it with a light cloth (white non-woven fabric, mosquito net), as Gerbera flowers in bright sun lose their brightness and burn out.
Gerbera does not tolerate acidification of the soil, excessive waterlogging. The earth should be watered evenly only when it dries well. Gerbera loves her roots to breathe, so in addition to sand, it is better to add pine bark or small expanded clay to the soil.
Gerberas that are sold in stores are usually grown using so-called retardants - chemicals that inhibit plant growth.
Retardants cause an increase in the content of chlorophyll in the leaves, and they acquire a dark green color. Therefore, often purchased gerberas at home after some time turn pale, begin to stretch and lose their original appearance. It is important to comply with all lighting and temperature requirements so that the plant becomes perennial. And after two years, rejuvenate it by dividing the bush.
Gerbera pests and diseases
Gerbera is susceptible to various fungal diseases (powdery mildew, gray rot), which are provoked by increased humidity and poor ventilation. Of the gerbera pests, ticks, whiteflies, aphids, and scale insects can harm.
Gerberas are beautiful flowers that will delight you with their flowering for a long time. They are not very whimsical, but very, very decorative. Have you tried to grow gerberas in room conditions? Share your experience in the comments on the article or on our Forum.