Gazania - Treasure Flower
DESCRIPTION: These frost-tender perennials are usually grown as annuals; they are originally from South Africa. The leaves form basal rosettes of spoon-shaped or divided leaves, which are waxy, green above and silvery below. They are 3 to 5 inches long. They bear pretty, daisy-like flowers on single stems that are 6 to 8 inches long, in the summer. The flowers grow 3 inches across and may be yellow, orange, pink, mahogany or white, and are often bi-colored. The flowers close at night and in cloudy weather.
POTTING: These plants need full sun and well-drained soil when they are grown outdoors. In cool climates, they can be grown inside, in containers of sandy loam and peat. They also may be lifted in the fall and wintered in a frost-free greenhouse, or treated as annuals.
PROPAGATION: Seeds may be sown indoors, 14 to 16 weeks before planting outside. They should have a temperature of 60 degrees. When they sprout, lower the temperature to 55 or 60 degrees. Cuttings may be taken in August and inserted in a closed cold frame until spring. Protection must be given during the winter by placing mats over them. It is better, however, to plant the rooted cuttings in a flat in a frost-proof greenhouse. If they are to bloom in the greenhouse, they should be potted separately in March; otherwise, they should stay in the flats until late May, when they're planted outside after being hardened off in a cold frame.
VARIETIES: G. splendens; G. longiscapa; G. Pavonia; G. rigens.
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