Flower Care

African Daisies: Tips for Growing Osteospermum

Growing African Daisies

Every garden enthusiast is attracted to the slight pop of color created by beautiful blooming florals. If you are yearning for a vivacious garden this summer but don’t want to overpower your garden’s soil with huge blooms, African daisies (Osteospermum) are the perfect pick. These petite annuals add a burst of personality and shine either inside taking the spotlight in a vase or outside basking in the warm sun. They can complement any blooms in need of support to enhance their beauty, or they can stand confidently on their own.

While African daisies may be mistaken as other daisy varieties, they are much more unique to the trained flower-enthusiast’s eye. African daisies typically bloom with flat petals, more common in the daisy family, or in cone-shaped petals. The leaves will vary by variety from smooth and flat to toothed or lobed. These beautiful blooms will vary in radiant color, ranging from solid bold purples to fading hues of red and orange. If this flower is what your garden is seeking, it’s best if you know how to grow African daisies before you whip out your gardening tools.

 

Planting the Seeds

Your local nursery may carry African daisies as seedlings, but you can still grow them from fresh seeds. Growing African daisies is best done starting about 6-8 weeks before the last frost of the season, like other annuals. They germinate in the sunlight so should only be sprinkled on top of soil located inside the house. Keep them in a well-lit and cool are as they are temperamental with heat.

Once the seedlings are about 2-3 inches tall, they can be moved to their individual pots to sprout. After the last frost has passed, they can be transferred to their outside soil. Unlike most annuals, African daisies will still bloom in poor soil, but they prefer soil with a little extra fertilizer. Once outside, they should be planted about 12 inches apart from each other.

Growing African Daisies

African daisies love cool, damp settings. In order to grow them to their full health and beauty, you should keep watering them one inch per week. Even though they bloom from Spring through Fall, these particular flowers are not a fan of the hot weather. Whenever the temperature rises to those sweltering summer days, your African daisies will go dormant and their growth will slow down.

Maintaining Gorgeous African Daisies

One part that may come as a shock on how to grow African daisies is that you need not deadhead or prune the dead daisy blooms from the live ones. Once African daisies wilt away, they do not produce any toxins for the other blooms to inhale. If your garden suffers through a heat wave or a drought period, your African daisies will lie dormant and stop growing. During this time, cut back the flowers and they will continue growing in the Fall once the weather returns cool.

Insects and disease can greatly affect the lifespan of your African daisies. Aphids can be fended off with repellent or insecticide. While African daisies love regular watering, they can develop a fungal disease from water left on their leaves and stems. If your blooms are covered in continuous water, change your watering habits and make sure only the soil is remaining damp to avoid fungal growth.

 

Growing African daisies is both rewarding and simple enough to the green-thumbed gardener. They can be clipped and arranged in a beautiful bouquet to enjoy inside or be enjoyed year after year. In order to keep these beautiful daisies coming back to your yard, sprinkle some fresh seeds on top of the soil after the blooming season. Keep your garden fresh and colorful year after year!

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