Arctotis

Common name: African Daisy

A daisy-eyed perennial flower that is generally grown as a half-hardy annual in the UK.

If grown in a hot sunny position the silvery-grey plants will be transformed into a vibrant display of 100mm (4") blooms in a mix of colours ranging from white and cream, to bright red, with either gold or dark centres.

In dull weather and late in the day, they will close, but will open again when the sun reappears.

Hybrids flowers last longer than the species making them the most popular varieties for border and bedding out.

Dependant upon variety they can grow to a height of 300-600mm (12"-24") high and flower from July until first frosts.

acaulis and breviscapa grow to a height of 150-250mm (6”-10”) making them suitable for edging borders and for window-boxes, flowering from July onwards.

Stop young plants when 150mm (6") high by pinching out the growing tips to encourage a bushy habit.

Avoid over-watering young plants, heavy, wet soil can encourage basal rot.

Support tall large flowered varieties with split canes or twiggy sticks.

Dead head regularly to extend the flowering period.

Cultivation notes:

Week 10: Sow seed in trays of seed compost, just covering the seed with sifted compost.

Germinate at a temperature of 18°C (64°F).

Germination should take up to a week.

Week 13: Prick out the seedlings into boxes and harden off in a frost free cold frame or greenhouse until planting out time.

Alternatively sow seeds directly in to their growing area if ground conditions allow.(circa Week 18)

Thin out the seedlings later to their required planting distance.

Week 18: If you are planning to grow on in containers, pot up seedlings into 125mm (5”) pots and grow on at a temperature of 13°C (55°F) until planting out time.

Week 22: Plant out 300mm (12”) in an open sunny site where the soil is well drained.





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