Gerbera daisies are popular cut flowers for fresh floral displays. They are also favorites in the home garden and are usually planted as established plants or seedlings acquired from nurseries. This is because they are extremely difficult to grow from seed; however, under strict growing conditions, like that of a greenhouse or germination chamber, you can plant and successfully grow gerbera daisy seeds.
Refrigerate seeds in their original package once you purchase them or when they arrive from an online or catalog supplier. Take out only when you are ready to plant them.
Fill a planting tray with individual planting sections with 1 part peat and 1 part perlite. The pH should be between 5.8 and 6.0, and the soil should be slightly moist.
Sow a pinch of seeds on top of the soil in each planting tray. They can be thinned later if more than one germinates. Cover the seeds with a thin layer of number 3 grade vermiculite.
Set the tray in a controlled setting, preferably a greenhouse. Place a clear plastic bag around the plastic tray to hold in heat and humidity and maintain temperatures between 70 and 75 F. The seeds should get at least 12 hours of light from the sun or incandescent plant lights.
Take the plastic off the trays once the seeds germinate--which usually takes 7 to 14 days--and set in an area that receives some light shade in the afternoon. Maintain a humidity level between 70 and 75 percent, and at night drop temperatures between 68 and 72 F.
Fertilize seedlings 10 days after germination with a fertilizer labeled 15-5-15. Follow the directions on the label to dilute the fertilizer so each plant only receives 50 to 75 ppm (parts per million) of nitrogen. After applying the fertilizer, gently wash the seedlings with a light sprinkle of water. Gerbera daises are generally ready to transplant into a larger container or outdoors in about six weeks.