Dimorphoteca

The plant of the month is Dimorphoteca a cousin of the daisy which is native to South Africa.

This plant is ideal for growing here in Spain as it requires little water and is happy in the sun and direct exposure. Research and different tests have resulted in the appearance of hybrids of daisies of varied colours. This confusion can arise among the less expert when seeing a Dimorphotheca, as the size of its flowers is very similar to the daisy, with the centre darker than the outer petals which are numerous. The colours include a wide spectrum including white, pink, fuchsia, yellow and orange, although the most common colour is yellow. The flowers appear in the last months of spring and throughout the summer.

This herbaceous plant, like its cousin-daisy sister, also belongs to the group of composites with varieties of evergreen and annual leafed plants. It is advisable to plant Dimorphothecas in the first weeks of autumn in well-drained soil that has been previously fertilized. In the days following the planting it is advisable to provide abundant water, but after these first three weeks the water supply should be low - quarter of a litre every 20 days. The plants can suffer from mildew and rot, especially if over-watered.

Plant Dimorphothecas approximately 25cm apart where they can ensure the presence of the sun. They make great plants in borders as they are so colourful, flower for many weeks and need little maintenance. Deadhead the flowers regularly.

Paco and Esther at Jardinería El Milagro will advise you which are the best plants for your garden.