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Zone
Zones A1-A3, 1-45, H1, H2
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Full
Regular Water
Moderate

Dimorphotheca

African Daisy, Cape Marigold
Asteraceae (Compositae)
Annuals, Ground covers

These free-blooming South African natives have daisy flowers, 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- to 16-in. plants are to grow (preferably in light soil). In colder climates, sow in spring for summer bloom. Flowers closed when shaded, on heavily overcast days, and at night. Use them in broad masses as a ground cover, in borders and parking strips, along rural roadsides, and as fillers among low shrubs.

Dimorphotheca sinuata ‘Spring Flash Orange’, photo courtesy of Richard Shiell
Dimorphotheca sinuata ‘Spring Flash Orange’, photo courtesy of Richard Shiell

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Dimorphotheca sinuata

Best known of annual African daisies. To 4–12 in. high. Narrow leaves with a few teeth or shallow cuts. Flowers 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.

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