African Daisies (Osteospermum)

Today was another wet and overcast day (particularly in the morning) but the weather looks promising for our upcoming seven day stretch of the Holiday Lights Show (HLS) December 17th through the 23rd. There are some additional dates beyond that so check out www.rotarybotanicalgardens.org for more information on the schedule, entertainment and information on pre-purchasing tickets which is highly recommended.  Larry H. worked on some lights and is upgrading an area in the HLS that will look better after his attention.  Dr. Gredler was in for painting and Urban was out pruning in the drizzle.  Maury ran some errands for us and we also saw Dick H., Alan, Gary, Dr. Yahr, Mark S., Art H. and many others.

I love the look of African daisies (Osteospermum ecklonis) which thrive in full sun situations.  Above is the picturesque ‘Astra Purple Spoon’!  Native to Africa, these plants are not hardy for us and are considered an annual.  We’ve come to realize that African daisies require significant attention to maximize their “duration of appeal.”  Definitely position them in full sun and they will also thrive in containers.  Adequate water and well drained soils are important too.  While African daisies are promoted as being tolerant of tougher soils, you’ll have more flowers on a fuller plant with good soils and frequent (weekly) fertilizing.  Remove (deadhead) spent blossoms as well to encourage more buds to form.  If you have the time to dedicate a little more TLC to your Osteospermum selections, the rewards are amazing as seen in these photos (all of which were taken in mid July this year).

 Osteospermum ‘Astra Pink Spoon’
 Osteospermum ‘Astra Pink Improved’
 Osteospermum ‘Astra Outback Purple’
 Osteospermum ‘3D Silver’
 Osteospermum ‘3D Purple’
 Osteospermum ‘3D Pink’
 Osteospermum ‘3D Berry White’
 Osteospermum ‘Asti Purple’
 Osteospermum ‘Doris Daisy Big Yellow’
 Osteospermum ‘Cape Daisy Antique Blue’
Osteospermum ‘Astra Rose Eye’
 Osteospermum ‘Ostica Violet’
 Osteospermum ‘Ostica Purple Eye’
 Osteospermum ‘Ostica Bronze’
 Osteospermum ‘Side Show White’
 Osteospermum ‘Summertime Sweet Bronze’
 Osteospermum ‘Pink Charme’
 Osteospermum ‘Voltage White’
Osteospermum ‘ Tradewinds Pink’
 Osteospermum ‘Ostica Bronze’
Osteospermum ‘4D Yellow’

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