Osteospermum is a gorgeous perennial with equally magnificent flowers. This flower is more often known as the African daisy. This tender perennial, also known as African daisy, is often grown as an annual due to its beautiful spring and fall blooms.
African daisy, which are often used as a front of border plant in warmer climates or as annual bedding, also make great container plants. There are various colors and varieties to pick from, and the brilliant daisy blossoms attract pollinators.
They are also colorful and excellent in attracting pollinators. It’s a vibrant, long-lasting flower that blooms from the beginning of summer until the end of fall. The Cape plants should be grown in full sun with plenty of shade and well-drained soil.
Osteospermum is a bushy evergreen perennial that is also known as Veldt Daisies, African Daisies, or Cape Daisy. It is native to South Africa and belongs to the Asteraceae family. They may also be grown successfully in pots!
African daisy bears daisy-like flowers and irregular toothed green leaves. Petals can be smooth and flat, like a daisy, or they might radiate out in the shape of a tubular spoon. The leaves differ depending on the cultivar.
Cape Daisies have various colors, types and bloom designs. Pinks, purples, yellows, creams, and oranges are the most popular colors. Most blooms have a deep violet core; recent hybrids have a deep yellow center.
The Cape daisy love full light in the garden and, while not finicky about soil type, do require free draining soil. These plants are drought resilient, hardy, and can withstand dry soils.
These flowers grow quickly and bloom about two months after sprouting from seeds. They are best planted in the spring after the threat of frost has passed. These are hardy in zones 10 to 11, but are grown as annuals in other climate zones.
- Common Name: Osteospermum spp.
- Botanical Name: African daisy, cape daisy, osteospermum
- Family: Asteraceae
- Plant Type: Perennial
- Mature Size: 1–3 ft. tall, 1–2 ft. wide
- Sun Exposure: Full sun
- Soil Type: Moist, well-drained
- Soil pH: 5.0 -5.5 (Acidic)
- Bloom Time: Spring, summer, fall
- Flower Color: Purple, pink, yellow, orange, white, bicolor
- Hardiness Zones: 10–11 (USDA)
- Native Area: Africa, Southwestern Asia
Types of Osteospermum Plant
The genus Osteospermum belongs to the Calenduleae, the smaller tribes of the Asteraceae (sunflower/daisy family). These plants are also known as daisy bushes or African daisies. There are several species and variants of Osteospermum, including:
- Osteospermum ecklonis: It has lovely white blooms that are deep blue on the back of the petals and have a dark blue centre.
- O. jucundum: It has slender, green leaves and the extra benefit of being a beautiful, weed-controlling ground cover plant with purple blooms from summer to fall.
- O. ‘Lemon Symphony’: The butter-yellow petals of this shrub feature a purple core and an orange eye. This cultivar grows to be around 14 inches tall.
- O. ‘Passion Mix’: This small plant grows to about a foot tall and is available in various hues, all with blue center. This type is recognized for its heat tolerance and is simple to grow from seed.
How To Grow Osteospermum Plant
The seeds for the hybrids marketed in gardens are typically not widespread, but you might be able to get seeds for some of the pure species kinds of African daisy, such as Osteospermum ecklonis. Here’s how to grow Osteospermum plants from seed:
Plant osteospermum in a sheltered spot in full sun in well-drained soil, or in a container on a sunny patio or windowsill. Sow the seeds directly on the surface of a container filled with regular potting mix eight to ten weeks before the last winter/spring frost.
Cape Daisy prefers a sunny area with rich, well-drained soil. Use a commercial potting soil mix for growing osteospermum in pots. Water the plants as soon as the soil feels dry.
Maintain moisture for the seeds until they germinate. Grow the seedlings in bright indirect light until they are ready for outdoor planting. During the flowering season, use liquid fertilizer to enhance the continuation of flowers.
Osteospermum is ideally pruned in early spring or autumn to reduce lanky growth and promote fresh new leaves. To keep Osteospermums healthy, water them on a daily basis and prevent letting them dry up.
Prune down Osteospermums to roughly 3 inches in height before new growth begins in early spring. The plant will be encouraged to generate new growth if the old foliage is removed.
The bulk of African daisy cultivars are hybrids, and seeds kept from the plants will not grow true. Plants may be easily propagated by cuttings. To do this:
- Fill a shallow tray half with a sterile seed-starting mixture. Slightly dampen the mix.
- Then, using sharp bypass pruners cut plant cuttings 2 to 3 inches long with as least two sets of leaf nodes. Remove any flower buds that are present, as well as the lower leaves.
- Dip the cut end with rooting hormone before planting it in seed-starting mix.
- Place the tray in an area with bright indirect light and temperatures between 60 and 68 degree F, and cover it with a plastic dome.
- The plants should be well-rooted in four to six weeks, at which point they can be moved to individual pots filled with potting mix or to an outdoor garden area.
Osteospermum Plant Care
Osteospermum grow in both the garden and in pots. Flowers are at their height from late spring to early summer, and then again from late summer to early fall.
African daisy prefers heat and direct sunlight. It prefers well-drained soil and can tolerate dry soils. They are one of the few annuals that will bloom even if planted in poor soil.
This Cape Daisy do not bloom during hot periods, they should be grown in conjunction with other plants that will provide visual appeal in the summer. When grown in a suitable climate, these flowers require little care. Water and fertilize regularly in the growth season.
Soil and Fertilizer
African daisies like organically rich soil with good drainage and a pH that is slightly acidic. When planting, add compost or other organic matter to the soil to enhance drainage and supply nutrients.
These flowers require a lot of nutrition to grow and bloom properly. A balanced fertilizer for flowering plants should be used weekly in the growth season, in addition to adding compost into the soil. Potted plants may require more regular feedings.
Light and Water
Osteospermum thrives in broad light. They can tolerate moderate shade, but will generally produce fewer blooms as a result. Blooms open in reaction to light and close at night and in cloudy weather. Some newer cultivars, like ‘4D Pink,’ ‘4D Silver,’ and ‘4D Berry,’ remain open at night.
African daisies require at least 1 inch of water per week to thrive. Plants slow down and go dormant during periods of drought or extreme heat. Keep even moisture level in the soil. Overwatering, on the other hand, can promote diseases such as root rot.
Temperature and Humidity
African daisies like warm weather, when they bloom the most freely. They can survive nighttime temperatures as low as 40 degree F, but frost will harm or kill them. Humidity is usually not a concern for them as long as they have adequate air circulation, watering, and soil drainage.
Pests and Diseases
In moist or humid settings, keep an eye out for fungal infections such as grey mould. These diseases will manifest as damaged or discolored foliage. Improve the air circulation around plant to battle fungal diseases, and use a fungicide as needed.
Some plant pests, such as whiteflies and aphids, can be bothersome, especially for stressed plants. They can be managed with an insecticidal soap or chemical spray.
Hope you enjoyed reading the Planting guide of Osteospermum. If you think we missed something or have a suggestion, please leave it in the comments section below.
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