Gazania is a genus of plants in the Asteraceae family, very popular as a group of ornamental plants among gardening and decoration enthusiasts. It is a plant as rustic as it is beautiful, since its flowering is showy due to its shape and its colours, which are very vivid and sometimes combined. There are varieties of this plant with orange, yellow and red flowers, others with white, pink and lilac flowers, others are solid yellow, and so on.
If you like it and want to know how to grow a gazania at home and what care it needs, keep reading us in this EcologíaVerde article where you will find a guide practice gardening Over the gazania care.
Although this genus from southern Africa has 79 species described, when we talk about gazania it is usual that we are referring specifically to the Gazania splendensthe most common of them in gardening and decoration.
It is a perennial plant, although it is often cultivated as an annual, which tends not to exceed 20cm tall. Due to its size, it is very common for it to be used to define spaces in gardens and even to replace lawns in some areas. In a pot it also provides a nice and very distinctive touch of color, since its brightly colored flowers are impossible to miss. The gazania bloom It occurs during the spring and reaches its maximum exponent during the summer and, if the conditions are suitable, it can last until mid or late autumn.
It is such an adaptable plant and so easy to care for that, in fact, it is common for it to spread naturally to pots or adjoining areas. Due to the ability of their flowers to close at night, gazanias are also sometimes called sleepers.
Gazania care – practical guide
Despite the little care that this plant needs, it is advisable to follow some indications to make it look beautiful and resist as many seasons as possible. This is one practical guide to caring for gazania and then you will see more details about these.
- Climate and location: It is a warm climate and can withstand strong heat better than intense cold. Place it in a place with plenty of sunlight.
- Irrigation: water it only when you notice that its soil has dried to a certain depth, not just on the surface.
- Soil and compost: It doesn’t need many nutrients in the substrate or soil, but it should be fertilized every two weeks during the hot months to improve its flowering.
- Common pests and diseases: Gazanias can be attacked by a variety of insects that cause pests. Regarding diseases, the most common is the fungal disease of mildew.
Gazanias can be successfully grown both indoors and outdoors thanks to their Great adaptability. In fact, it is as common to see them embellishing pots as forming part of beds and borders in gardens of all kinds. However, a very important point in their care, and practically the only vital one, is that they need to be located at some point where they receive a good amount of sunlight.
If you leave them in the shade, their flowers will not open and the plant will produce fewer of these, leaving the few that it has decayed. So find a particularly sunny spot in your garden or next to a window that receives a good number of hours of sunlight.
Gazanias originate from a warm weatherbut can bear soft winters thanks to its ability to adapt. However, they will appreciate warm and very sunny environments. Remember that it will be in the sunniest climates that its flowers will show all their beauty, if you place it in a sunny area. However, if you see that the tips of the leaves are beginning to burn, perhaps the sun in the strongest hours is too much for the plant and, even if it is in a place with a warm climate, it will be better to put it in semi-shade.
How to water gazanias
These plants are made for dry climates, so they don’t need a lot of water to survive. In fact, it is better not to risk overwatering them to avoid possible problems with fungus or rot.
Water your gazanias when you notice that the substrate is dry beyond its surface layer, in this way you will prevent excess watering. You can check it with a wooden stick or by sinking your finger a little, if between 3 and 5 cm comes out dry you can water. Of course, in the hottest months, do not neglect them too much: if you want their flowers to look beautiful and healthy, pay more attention to their watering in this season.
Soil and fertilizer for gazania
Gazanias are not picky with the type of soil or substrate they need. In fact, they don’t even need the soil to be rich in organic matter, but the presence of it will help them stay in better shape. Add some humus or compost to the soil or substrate mixture and, in addition, pay them every 15 days in the warm months. In this way, you will prolong its flowering.
Here we teach you How to make earthworm humus and here How to make bocashi compost.
Gazania flower care
If you want to keep the plant with a abundant flowering and showy, it is very important to keep gazanias free of dried petals, leaves and flowers. Remove the fallen parts from the substrate and Prune parts that are not in good condition. Thus, you will keep the plant active and help direct its nutrients and energy to the creation of new flowers.
Also, remember to pay attention to the possible appearance of weeds, because they could rob your gazanias of their nutrients, so remove them as soon as you see them.
Diseases and pests of gazanias
These are the main diseases and pests of gazanias:
- Mildew: If you see white or gray spots appear on the leaves of the plant, it is probably the mildew fungus. This appears with humidity and heat. Remove the affected parts and apply homemade fungicide.
- Insect pests: gazanias are not particularly weak to the attack of any specific insect, that is, they will be threatened by the same pests as the rest of the plants in your garden or home. If you have problems with a specific pest, take a look at our article on How to make natural insecticides for plants.
In addition, we recommend you consult these EcologíaVerde gardening guides on How to combat mildew and Plant pests and diseases of plants: lists and how to eliminate them.
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