My Gerberas

A Seasoned Gardener & Rose Lover

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Munir
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Re: My Gerberas

Post by Munir » September 10th, 2013, 11:29 pm

. My earlier lighter vein comments aside,Mikhurram you have explained the matter really so well. Thank you.
. BTW, aren't these problems & solutions applicable to other plants also?
. Where do you get your Gerbera seeds or plants? I don't know about others, but More Green seed dealers offered only Festival Semi-Double in a past year ; are they good enough?

mikhurram
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Re: My Gerberas

Post by mikhurram » September 11th, 2013, 9:12 am

Sir you are most welcome to ask any questions
In general most of these problems would also be applicable to other plants but Gerberas are extremely sensitive to standing water and i keep on reiterating again and again that they should be planted on a higher raised bed with good drainage. The major threat they face is the rain onslaught during monsoon. Consequently the major reason of mortality rate is excess standing water.
As mentioned before in my subsection there are two re-known Dutch companies specializing in the hybridization of tissue culture gerberas namely Florist and Shreurs and the flowers we seen in flower shops predominantly are the tissue culture gerberas. They are being cultivated successfully around Pattaki including Gladiolus. Haji Ibrahim of Changa nursery is a major supplier of cut gerberas. Often some of the upscale nurseries in Lahore tend to import the tissue culture Gerbera of Florist company through their joint venture based in India and sell tiny plants around Rs 150 which costs them around Rs 75. Someone recently informed me that some nurseries are again planning to import Tissue Culture Gerbera of Florist around November from India.
Gerberas are also raised through seed provided by Sakata and Goldsmith companies. I have tried the gerberas grown from seed by Goldsmith and they their survival rate is zero and most of nurseries have a habit of fleecing customers by selling them gerberas raised from seed as tissue culture gerberas.
The gerbera seed of Sakata company being offered in spider form or as Festival Semi-Double is very expensive. Two years ago they a single seed used to cost Rs 13 and now probably the cost by now would have jumped to Rs 18 and nurseries tend to sell a single plant from seed at Rs 100-200.
Single gerberas are more hardier and can be bough for Rs 50 each but the flower shape and varieties pales in comparison to the tissue culture varieties.
I have included photos from the 1st and 2nd page of KBW's Gerbera collection of a tissue culture gerbera and single local gerbera to make it easier for viewers to easily distinguish the type of Gerberas sold by nurseries.
Attachments
tissueculture1.jpg
Tissue Culture Gerbera either from Florist or Scheurs. Notice that the petals are double.
semidouble.JPG
Semi Double Gerbera most probably grown from seed.
semidouble.JPG (41.07 KiB) Viewed 2080 times
singlegerbera.jpg
Single local Gerbera

Munir
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Re: My Gerberas

Post by Munir » September 11th, 2013, 11:03 am

Thank you dear for explaining. I will have some more questions later,in order to be clear before I undertake growing them this time. In the meanwhile, if KBW-another expert on this,may like to add anything?

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Re: My Gerberas

Post by KBW » October 18th, 2013, 3:53 am

mikhurram wrote:Some of my tissue culture Gerbera purchased in 2008 are still alive. Even grown in a site with good drainage and sunshine from morning till 12 am, one needs to work on the soil continously. Its true that the older traditional varieties are are more hardier but life of most tissue culture Gerberas can be extended or mortality rate of tissue culture Gerberas can be minimized by following the guidelines suggested below.

-The main challenge these days is to prevent fungus attack which can be minimized by spraying.

-They are also very vulnerable to slugs these days and around spring. This can be minimized by spreading slug pellets preferably organic pellets available in Lahore at Pride Seeds or Chanan Din.

-The soil needs to be amended season wise and keeping a eye on soil PH and its drainage. I would recommend adding organic composts like leaf mold. Also the soil should have good drainage as Gerberas roots hate water logging. Thus having them in raised beds on well drained soil with sunlight from morning till noon would be ideal.

-The roots of Gerberas are also vulnerable to to termites and ants which can quickly decimate a plant. This is usually common these days.

-Varieties which have survived and are in the ground for more than 4 years should be divided by root division. Middle of February and first week of March are recommend for those wishing to divide their plants.

-They are also susceptible to Mealy Bugs around February/March. Menace of Mealy Bugs can be minimized or kept to a check by mixing green pesticide granules in the "Seven Seas Insectiside powder" on the soil around the boundary wall of our houses/trees around December. After putting this powder in soil around the wall edges it should be kept moist by spraying it with water. This would kill the eggs hatched by Mealy Bugs. These granules and insecticide is available at Pride Seeds by asking Ashfaq about it.

This can be followed up with spraying of regular pesticides for these pests on walls when the babies of Mealy Bugs started crawling upwards on the wall. These usually started crawling upwards from 1st or 2nd week of January onwards. By adopting these procedures for the past 3 years i managed to eliminate 90% of the mealy bugs in my home. Also around December we should wrap a polythene sheet around the tree diameter till April which hinders the movement of Mealy Bugs.

The problem is that we only resort to spraying when the mealy bugs after eggs have developed into a adult insects. We have to focus on the root of the problem i.e. eliminating the eggs of the mealy bugs from the start around December. Topic of Mealy Bug may seem a bit off from the discussion but i felt that since Gerberas are also vulnerable to them and i have often seen members asking about the remedy when these Mealy Bugs become a full fledged menace. I hope that this information proves to be beneficial.
Khurram sahib, thanks for your comments. Some of my Gerberas also survived and are now in fourth or fifth year of their lives. In fact more than 15 plants have survived (all florist and scheurs varieties) but many more have died.

All the precautions / practices that you have mentioned above were taken (except using chemical pesticides which I strictly do not use in my garden). In fact, me and my friend (who is many times more experienced than me and has around 25 years experience of growing Gerberas), went in to great details in ensuring correct soil preparation, subsequent watering, use of fertilizers (no chemical fertilizers were used) and other plant care aspects. My friend, out of his experience had told me in advance that most of these plants will die this year, no matter what you do but I wanted to give it a try. We tried together but in vain. Some of them are still surviving and are doing well. I just checked up few days back and was told that they were doing well (along with my rose bushes).

regards

Munir
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Re: My Gerberas

Post by Munir » October 18th, 2013, 9:28 am

Thank you,KBW for your comments.
Mikhurram,by now I have forgotten everything I had in mind;will have to relearn & then request for more details to be able to add this beautiful flower in my garden, though I already have about a dozen local ones. For now,just tell me the the right time for their planting or the deadline I must have in mind.

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Re: My Gerberas

Post by sara » October 28th, 2013, 12:10 pm

.. the one plant i love and dont have...yet !
Sara

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Re: My Gerberas

Post by haraam » November 19th, 2013, 6:16 pm

Hello all,

Does anybody know what is the price of tissue-cultured ex agar gerberas from India? Thank you in advance!

George

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Re: My Gerberas

Post by omerkhalid » November 20th, 2013, 9:44 am

Stunning and beautiful, your Gerberas are very neat, crisp and rich in colour :)

mikhurram
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Re: My Gerberas

Post by mikhurram » November 20th, 2013, 5:04 pm

Hello all,

Does anybody know what is the price of tissue-cultured ex agar gerberas from India? Thank you in advance!

George
Florist & Scheurs the producers of tissue culture gerberas based in Holland have an intensive distribution system all over the world including Europe. My advise would be to get in touch with their distributors based in Europe. The air shipment charges of ordering from India to Bulgaria would definately be more compared to Europe.

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