Different colours of gerbera daisies. Image courtesy: wholeblossoms.com

The science behind our flowers – 1 : The non-fussy Gerbera

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Yellow gerbera buttonhole decorated with little gypsophila florets and leaves at Inspirations Florist

Yellow gerbera buttonhole decorated with little gypsophila florets and leaves at Inspirations Florist

At Inspirations Florist, we simply love our Gerberas; we often pop these long-stemmed daisies into our bouquets, i.e. standard, luxury and deluxe bouquets. You’ll also find them in our deluxe baskets. Sometimes, we like to cut our Gerberas to a shorter length in order to create a beautiful buttonhole for your suit. In the dictionary of Gerberas, there is no such thing as complicated. These ever-smiling daisies are non-fussy; grow easily and perennially; are low-maintenance, and can be mass-produced – so much so that the Gerbera daisies are the fifth most cut flowers in the world. You’ll find some scientific information about growing and maintaining your Gerberas in this article.

Different colours of gerbera daisies. Image courtesy: wholeblossoms.com

Different colours of gerbera daisies. Image courtesy: wholeblossoms.com

From a botanical perspective

Gerberas come in a variety of species, colours, and hybrids. Botanically, they belong to the sunflower family – Asteraceae; you’ll find similar petal arrangement and affinity to sunlight as the other sunflowers. The ‘several petals of one flower’ that you see is actually a ‘capitulum’ (or a conglomeration of many individual flowers), which gives the appearance of a single flower. Nowadays, you can cross various species of Gerbera to get exotic hybrids. For use in a florist, you want to produce maximum Gerberas in minimal time. Hence, we often resort to a ‘crown division’ method of maintaining mass-production of Gerberas. Another popular method of growing these daisies would be to sow their seeds in viable germinating conditions. Check out these methods here. Gerberas are so popular that it is extremely easy to find their seeds or bulbs at your local markets or garden center.

 

Maintaining your gerberas

Potted gerberas. Image courtesy: Flowers Forever

Potted gerberas. Image courtesy: Flowers Forever

Gerberas are one of the easiest flowers to maintain in your homes, gardens or greenhouses. You need to sow new seeds just few inches below a medium-porous soil base in a mid-sized pot, and water once every day until the seeds sprout into roots. They don’t require too much water (wild Gerberas grow well on semi-arid mountains too), so you just need to ensure that the soil doesn’t go absolutely dry for a long time. A good schedule would be to water them in the morning, or a couple of light sprinkle showers in your greenhouse. They grow at all times of the year but are best grown after spring, when the sun shines just right. Frost kills the flowers, so you need to get them indoors if the night temperature dips below 6C. An atmospheric humidity of about 65% is ideal for their maintenance. You can fertilise them once in few weeks with a water-based fertiliser, rich in phosphorus and potassium.

Plucked Gerberas on sale at Inspirations Florist

Cut gerberas at Inspirations Florist

 Gerberas at Inspirations Florist

Once cut, the flowers stay fresh for a day or two with some maintenance, and you can temporarily enhance the life of the plucked stem by immersing it in a lightly sugared solution. Your Gerberas are very flexible – you needn’t spend too much of your time, effort, money and fertilisers in maintaining them. See if you can spot different beautiful Gerbera daisies in our Standard Bouquet, Premium Bouquet, Luxury Bouquet and Deluxe Basket. Also, check out our Facebook page photos and let us know in the comments which Gerbera colours and combinations you loved the most.

 

Gerberas @ Inspirations Florist

Gerberas @ Inspirations Florist

We’ll come back with more science behind our flowers stories shortly.

 

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