Image by F.D. Richards
By Bonnie L. Grant
African bush daisies are victims of a common horticultural identity crisis. Botanists are routinely reclassifying plants as they identify each family and genus more accurately with DNA testing. This means plants like African bush daisy may bear the scientific name Gamolepis chrysanthemoides or Euryops chrysanthemoides. The important distinction between the two is the latter part of the name. This indicates that no matter the name, African bush daisy is a member of our common Chrysanthemum family. Some details on how to grow an African bush daisy follow.
Euryops Bush Daisy
The Euryops daisy is a large perennial bush that grows well in warm climates in USDA zones 8 to 11. The plant will bloom all season long or until cold temperatures appear with yellow daisy-like flowers. The deeply cut, lacy leaves cover a bush that may get 5 feet tall and up to 5 feet wide.
Choose a well-drained, but moist, bed in full sun for growing bush daisies. The Euryops bush daisy makes a great border, container or even rock garden display. Provide plenty of space for mature plants when choosing where to plant the bushes.
How to Grow an African Bush Daisy
The Euryops daisy starts easily from seed. In fact, the bush will readily reseed itself in its habitat. Start seeds indoors in flats 8 weeks before the last expected frost in the cooler zones. Plant outside on 18- to 24-inch centers.
Once your African bush daisy has established, it has very low maintenance requirements. The lovely flowers are produced in abundance without extreme daisy bush care. For high performance and exceptional display, the Euryops bush daisy cannot be beat in warm and temperate climates.
Daisy Bush Care
In the warmer zones that are appropriate for African bush daisies, little supplemental care is required for a year-round display. In zone 8, cold temperatures, and even periods of freezing, will cause the plant to die back, but it usually re-sprouts in spring. To ensure the plant’s resurrection, pile 3 inches of mulch around the root zone of the plant. Cut down the dead stems in early spring to make way for the new growth.
African bush daisy may also be grown in cooler zones as an annual during the summer. When temperatures are consistently lower than 60 degrees Fahrenheit, flower production will suffer.
Fertilize in spring with an all- purpose fertilizer. As a rule, the stems of the Euryops daisy are sturdy, but occasional staking is necessary.
Nematodes are the biggest problem of African daisies and can be combated with beneficial nematodes.
This plant is so easy to care for that it makes a perfect addition to the warm season garden.