Gazanias are the dream plant for low maintenance gardens. Their vivid, cheerful blooms guarantee a sunburst of colour and the dark green foliage never seems to lose its gloss. There are also Gazanias with silvery foliage, which is always a nice contrast to have in the garden. They grow easily and neatly and are utterly dependable in hot, dry weather.
Gardeners who love colour but don’t have a lot of time on their hands could do no better than set a framework of shrubs in place, put in some other low maintenance perennials like Agapanthus or Restios and then mass Gazanias at their feet. There’s no chance of it being boring as Gazanias come in an intense range of colours and stripes, principally bronze, orange, yellow and red as well as deep pink and mahogany. The stripes, aptly named the Tiger mixture, are particularly fiery.
Being low growers (they reach a height of between 20 cm to 25 cm) Gazanias also work well as edgings for beds, in rockeries, in containers and in hanging baskets that are in hot, sunny positions. They need full sun and can tolerate most types of garden soil if there is good drainage. They should be watered well once a week or every two weeks in cooler weather. They benefit from beds that have been well prepared with compost and well rotted manure and they will also respond to a general fertilising with Ludwig’s Vigorosa or 3:2:3 every six weeks.
Look out for these Varieties
Daybreak Gazanias have won numerous international awards for their outstanding garden performance. They are durable and drought tolerant with strong colours on large blooms and have an excellent free-flowering and vigorous growth habit. The nine colours in the series range from white and pink to a sunny yellow and bronze but it is the new striped Gazanias, the Tiger Mixed, that are the most spectacular.
The Kiss Gazanias have silver foliage with large flowers in shades of frosty white, frosty yellow and mahogany.
This series, available in pinks and rose shades, is specifically for coastal or Karoo gardens as the plants are salt, heat and drought tolerant.