By Mary H. Dyer, Credentialed Garden Writer
African daisy delights gardeners with a profusion of brightly colored flowers throughout the long summer blooming season. But it needs regular care, including an occasional trim. Learn about pruning African daisies in this article.
|Family:||Asteraceae (ass-ter-AY-see-ee) (Info)|
|Genus:||Osteospermum (oss-tee-oh-SPUR-mum) (Info)|
|Additional cultivar information:||(aka Tauranga)|
Tropicals and Tender Perennials
Average Water Needs Water regularly do not overwater
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 °C (30 °F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 °C (35 °F)
USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 °C (40 °F)
Suitable for growing in containers
This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds
From herbaceous stem cuttings
From seed sow indoors before last frost
Bag seedheads to capture ripening seed
N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed
This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:
Citrus Heights, California
On Oct 18, 2002, jkom51 from Oakland, CA (Zone 9b) wrote:
African daisy is a plant that looks remarkably like the daisy, hence the name. The flowers bloom in the colors white, blue, yellow, orange and some shades of pink. However, there are some flowers that have alternating bands of color. The flower has a yellow center and commonly grows on roadsides, rock gardens, and open fields. The blooms are typically two to four inches in diameter and can grow twelve to eighteen inches high. Each flower should be set nine to twelve inches apart. The blooming season is from April to August.
African daisies are not capable of surviving in the winter seasons and thus the seedlings should be planted in late spring, early summer. They should be planted only about 1/16 of a inch deep. The soil should be, at minimum, 60 degrees F. The soil should be well drained and rich in nutrients and minerals.
When the plants are placed in the soil for the first time they should be watered thoroughly. They should be continually watered once a week if there is no rainfall. African daisies prefer moist soil and well fertilized areas.
African daisy is related to sunflowers and close at night. This type of daisy is a very hardy plant and is known for growing on the sides of highways where they may not be their prettiest but are revered for their toughness.
The African Daisy has won several awards for its placement in gardens, most notably, from the Royal Horticultural Society. These flowers are highly sought after in England due to their full colored blooms.
The flower is from a very old family that dates back to over forty-nine million years. It is believed that its old lineage, contributes greatly to flower’s ability to survive.
African daisies can be affected by most common bugs, like aphids and spider mites. However, they are resilient plants and rarely will such infestations actually cause death. They will not look their best though and many gardeners find it prudent to treat the problem with common insecticides in order to maintain a healthy looking garden.
However, many insects pollinate these plants and therefore insecticides should be used sparingly to avoid adverse affects on the plant’s natural cycle.
The African daisy is very prolific plant and has a tendency to be weed-like in nature. This problem is normally easily controlled in garden environments with pruning and removing unwanted seedlings.
Additional information on the African Daisy can be found on the following websites:
A detailed fact sheet on African Daisy can be found on the TAMU extension website.
NC State Extension covers Growing African Daises
African daisies are very easy to look after, though they require regular watering in the early stages of growth in the spring they can be left in fairly dry conditions once established in the Summer.
It is important to deadhead plants regularly in order to keep Arctotis under control. Typically the first Summer bloom is the best, so you may want to sow out fresh seeds each year. African daises self pollinate if conditions are hot enough, however cuttings may be taken in colder climates.