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|Scientific classification |
Gerbera L., is a genus of ornamental plants from the sunflower family (Asteraceae). It was named in honour of the German naturalist Traugott Gerber, a friend of Carolus Linnaeus.
It has approximately 30 species in the wild, extending to South America, Africa, Madagascar, and tropical Asia. The first scientific description of a Gerbera was made by J.D. Hooker in Curtis Botanical Magazine in 1889 when he described Gerbera jamesonii, a South African species also known as Transvaal daisy or Barberton Daisy.
Yellow gerberas floating in waterGerbera species bear a large capitulum with striking, 2-lipped ray florets in yellow, orange, white, pink or red colors. The capitulum, which has the appearance of a single flower, is actually composed of hundreds of individual flowers. The morphology of the flowers varies depending on their position in the capitulum.
Gerbera is very popular and widely used as a decorative garden plant or as cut flowers. The domesticated cultivars are mostly a result of a cross between Gerbera jamesonii and another South African species Gerbera viridifolia. The cross is known as Gerbera hybrida. Thousands of cultivars exist. They vary greatly in shape and size. Colours include white, yellow, orange, red, and pink. The centre of the flower is sometimes black. Often the same flower can have petals of several different colours.
Gerbera is commercially important. It is the fifth most important cut flower in the world (after rose, carnation, chrysanthemum, and tulip). It is also used as a model organism in studying flower formation. Gerbera contains naturally occurring coumarin derivatives.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
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