African Daisy, Cape Marigold
Annuals, Ground covers
These free-blooming South African natives have daisy flowers and are unsurpassed for winter and spring color in dry-summer, warm-winter areas. In those regions, broadcast seeds in late summer or early fall where 4–16-in. plants are to grow (preferably in light soil). In colder climates, sow in spring for summer bloom. Flowers close when shaded, on heavily overcast days, and at night. Use them in broad masses as a groundcover, in borders and parking strips, along rural roadsides, and as fillers among low shrubs.
Best known of the annual African daisies. Grows to 4–12 in. high and has narrow leaves with a few teeth or shallow cuts. Flowers to 1 1/2 in. wide with yellow centers or dark centers with flecks of yellow, and orange-yellow rays sometimes deep violet at base. Hybrids between this species and D. pluvialis come in white and shades of yellow and light orange, often with contrasting dark centers. Widely used for winter-to-spring color in Zones 10–13, where plantings reseed yearly. Provide some supplemental water if winter rains don’t come; leave dry over summer. Highly invasive in hot desert regions; should not be used near parks, preserves, or natural areas.
Heavy bloomer with bright orange petals tipped in yellow grows to about 1 1/2 ft. high.
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