Gazania

Gazanias are native to South Africa. The shimmering daisy-like flowers gleam like satin to attract pollinators. The flower head consists of two, sometimes four, colors. They relish full sun and enjoy summer heat. There are annual (Gazania splendens) and perennial gazanias (Gazania rigida). The perennial gazanias require second season to flower, but they will also not overwinter where there are frequent frosts. The leaves vary greatly from plant to plant. Some are long, lanceolate and green; others may be quite short, pinnate and thickly white-felted. There is no basic gazania flower coloring. They may be cream, primrose, lemon or chrome yellow; apricot, vivid or deep orange; brown, beige, purple or crushed strawberry-pink. And at the base of each ray there are markings in contrasting shades. Gazanias grow from 6 to 16 inches high and do well in poor soil, making a great ground cover.

Gazania a large, daisy-like composite flower in brilliant shades of yellow and orange
Gazania

The flowers close in low sunlight and a closed or even half-closed gazania flower is practically invisible. The low-growing gazanias provide mounds of blue-green foliage. Water early in the day to ensure dry foliage in the evening, which will prevent fungal problems. In warmer climates gazanias will bloom from May through June and again in September.

References

  1. Derek Fell's Grow This! Derek Fell
  2. The Complete Guide to Companion Planting. Dale Mayer
  3. The Arizona Low Desert Flower Garden. Kirti Mathura
  4. The Well-Tempered Garden: A New Edition Of The Gardening Classic. Christopher Lloyd