Also known as: African Daisy

Flowers in: Spring

Light requirements: Full Sun

Max Height: 60cmm

About Osteospermum
Osteospermum, also known as African daisies or Cape daisies, is a genus of flowering plants in the Asteraceae family. These plants are native to South Africa and are admired for their vibrant and daisy-like flowers. Depending on the species and cultivar, they can be herbaceous perennials or annuals, displaying a mounding or trailing growth habit. Their elongated leaves are often toothed or lobed. The flowers are the star attraction, showcasing a wide range of colors, including purple, pink, orange, yellow, and white. The flowerheads consist of a central disk surrounded by radiating petals. Osteospermum plants are popular for adding bursts of color to gardens, borders, containers, or hanging baskets. With their eye-catching daisy-like blooms and relatively low maintenance requirements, they bring joy to outdoor spaces.
Water Requirements
While osteospermum plants are moderately drought-tolerant, they still require regular watering. Allow the soil to dry slightly between waterings, as they are susceptible to root rot if overwatered. Avoid getting water on the foliage to reduce the risk of diseases.
Soil Requirements
These plants prefer well-draining soil with a slightly acidic to neutral pH. A fertile soil mix composed of equal parts garden soil, compost, and coarse sand or perlite works well. This type of soil allows water to drain effectively, preventing waterlogging and root rot.
Fertilising Requirements
Proper fertilization is essential to ensure healthy growth and abundant flowering.
  1. When to fertilize: Osteospermum plants benefit from regular fertilization during their active growing season, which typically spans from spring to early fall. As with many flowering plants, they require more nutrients during their growth phase to support flower production.
  2. Frequency: Fertilize Osteospermum approximately every 4 to 6 weeks during the growing season. Avoid excessive fertilization, as it can lead to nutrient imbalances and negatively impact the plant's health.
  1. Signs of Over-Fertilizing: Over-fertilizing can be detrimental to Osteospermum plants and may lead to several issues. If you notice any of these signs, stop fertilizing immediately and leach the soil by thoroughly watering the plant to flush out excess nutrients. Signs of over-fertilizing include:
    • Excessive foliage growth but limited flower production.
    • Foliage discoloration, such as yellowing or browning.
    • Wilting, even if the soil is consistently moist.
    • Salt buildup on the soil surface or around the plant's container.
    • Increased vulnerability to pests and diseases.
  1. Signs of Under-Fertilizing: Under-fertilized Osteospermum plants may display the following signs:
    • Reduced growth rate and smaller flowers.
    • Pale or yellowing leaves, especially in older foliage.
    • Fewer blooms or delayed flowering.
    • Generally weak and lackluster appearance.
Remember that each plant's needs can vary, so it's essential to observe your Osteospermum's response to the fertilizer. Adjust the fertilization frequency and strength as needed to promote optimal growth and abundant flowering. Alongside proper fertilization, provide adequate sunlight, well-draining soil, and regular watering to keep your Osteospermum plants thriving.
Special Instructions
Deadheading: Regular deadheading, which involves removing faded or spent flowers, helps promote continuous blooming and keeps the plant looking tidy. Pinch or cut off the wilted flowers at their base to encourage the development of new buds and extend the flowering period.
Interesting Information
Osteospermum plants are not frost-tolerant and may be damaged or killed by freezing temperatures. If you live in a region with cold winters, consider growing them as annuals or provide frost protection by covering them with a frost cloth or bringing potted plants indoors during the colder months.