Container Gerberas - Ideal for winter flowering!
Gerberas are traditionally grown in the ground in dedicated beds or with other compatible pants, such as roses, that enjoy the same type of soil and growing conditions. However, many of our WA Gerbera Society members successfully grow their gerberas in containers and have spectacular blooms over the winter months. It is all dependent on your winter maintenance!
Some tips from the experts:
In winter, black (or dark coloured) plastic pots are ideal. They are cheap, attract heat and keep the crowns and root systems warm.
Pots allow for good winter drainage.
Avoid planting directly into containers made from cement or other lime-based products. These may cause the potting mix to become too alkaline for gerberas. Ceramic containers are OK if they have good drainage.
You can always put your black plastic pot inside another decorative pot to make an impact.
More blooms will form with good soil drainage, added warmth and regular fertilising.
Fertilising can be more concentrated in pots and will therefore produce better winter blooms. Liquid fertiliser is best used "weak and weekly" - a little, more often, is the way to go in winter. Slow release pelletised fertilisers are a good option over the winter months.
Position your pots where they will get the maximum amount of sunlight (and warmth) during the day. A sunny balcony or veranda is perfect. The more sun, the more blooms.
Give your pots some space to allow for airflow. This will reduce the spread of any airborne diseases.
"Winterise" your gerbera pot plants in the same way you would in the garden, by removing dead or damaged leaves and spent flowers regularly.
You will still need to divide your potted gerberas when they start to look cramped. The best time for division is as the weather gets warmer.