Gardening with Gazanias
Gazanias, members of the Daisy family, are extremely rewarding annuals. The plants offer delicious, long-flowering variety, and require minimal care. Native to South Africa, they are particularly striking in indigenous gardens. Gazanias are very versatile, growing cheerfully as bedding plants, decorative edging and ground cover. They have both clump-forming and trailing growth habits, so also show to great effect in rockeries, borders, pots and window boxes. Renowned for their vigorous growth, and charming diversity, numerous hybrids are available. The blooms are borne on strong stems, and show in lustrous, vibrant shades of red, orange, pink, yellow, cream and white. The large, satiny flowers are sometimes bi-coloured, with distinctive contrasting stripes, and often display varied spots and mottling.
Gazanias are mildly frost-tender to hardy, so can be enjoyed in most regions of the country. The plant originated in the north- and south-western Cape, so grows extremely well in winter-rainfall areas. In summer-rainfall regions, Gazanias planted in soil that drains really well, will flourish just as happily. Plant your seedlings in warm, sunny positions, and these enduring delights will liven up the garden landscape throughout the year. To encourage stronger growth and flowering, you may wish to feed the plants with a balanced fertilizer about every six weeks. Really only requiring good drainage and minimal water, Gazanias are hard to beat for vibrant, enduring colour in any sunny, South African garden.
Information Supplied by the Bedding Plant Growers Association. Visit www.lifeisagarden.co.za for more.
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