How to Plant and Grow Swan River Daisy

When this colorful annual blooms in summer, the flowers nearly cover the entire plant.

With its soft-textured foliage and dainty blossoms, the swan river daisy (Brachyscome iberidifolia) makes a colorful addition to the garden. Depending on the location, swan river daisies, hardy in Zones 8-11, can be grown as annuals or perennials. When they bloom in summer, the prolific flowers cover the whole plant in blossoms, almost hiding the soft, feathery gray-green foliage. Although most species types and early varieties have single flowers, some hybrid plants feature double flowers, while others have a sweet fragrance.

Swan River Daisy Overview

Genus Name Brachyscome
Common Name Swan River Daisy
Plant Type Annual, Perennial
Light Part Sun, Sun
Height 1 to 3 feet
Width 12 to 18 inches
Flower Color Blue, Pink, Purple, White
Foliage Color Blue/Green
Season Features Fall Bloom, Spring Bloom, Summer Bloom
Special Features Attracts Birds, Fragrance, Good for Containers, Low Maintenance
Zones 10, 11, 8, 9
Propagation Seed, Stem Cuttings
Problem Solvers Drought Tolerant, Groundcover

Where to Plant Swan River Daisy

For the best results, plant swan river daisies in full sun. This ensures the plants produce the most flowers possible on dense plants. Although they prefer rich, moist, well-draining soil, they can adapt to sandy and clay soils, particularly if they are amended with compost.

Opt for swan river daisies when planting containers because they'll cascade over the sides; they also work well at the front of beds and as attractive border plants, forming low mats of color along a walkway.

How and When to Plant Swan River Daisy

Plant swan river daisies in spring just after the last frost date. Whether you grow this daisy from nursery plants, stem cuttings, or seeds sown indoors in the winter, planting them is similar. When planting in containers, use a planting medium of potting soil with vermiculite. In the garden, they prefer a location with well-draining garden soil. Dig holes just large enough for the root ball and spaced 6-9 inches apart. Remove the plants from their pots and set one in each hole, firming the soil around it with your hands. Water the plants.

In areas with mild temperatures, sow the seeds in spring directly into a prepared garden bed and cover them lightly with soil. Wait until after the last anticipated frost. As they grow, thin them to 6-9 inches apart. Swan river daisies planted in this manner tend to produce more robust seedlings than ones started indoors.

Swan River Daisy Care Tips

These Australian natives are easy to care for, whether planted as annuals or perennials.


Grow swan river daisies in full sun. If grown in too much shade, they can become floppy and not flower as much.

Soil and Water

Swan river daisies are tough plants and are tolerant of a wide variety of soil conditions. Their ideal growing conditions include moist, organically rich, well-drained soil. However, they adapt to tough situations, growing in sandy or clay soil and even rocky outcroppings. Soil pH should be between 6.0 and 8.0. Amend the soil with aged compost to create this environment.

They're drought tolerant but need extra water when the weather is hot and dry. If they're growing in sandy soil, water more frequently, allowing the soil to dry between waterings.

Temperature and Humidity

Swan river daisies do best in cool summer climates; in areas with hot and humid summers, they may slow down, wilt, or stop blooming altogether. They do best in temperatures between 50ºF and 75ºF.


Whether planted in a container or a garden, swan river daisies benefit from regular low-nitrogen fertilizer applications, but don't over-fertilize because that will burn the roots. Follow product label directions for the amount to use safely. If they're growing in containers, apply a slow-release fertilizer and a dose of liquid food every few weeks to keep them productive.


When the heat of summer begins, swan river daisies will benefit from a shearing back to about half their original size. This helps reinvigorate the plant and encourages bushy new growth. Shearing also helps build the groundwork for plenty of fall blooms once the temperatures begin to cool off again.

Keep them deadheaded throughout the growing season to encourage continuous flowers.

Potting and Repotting Swan River Daisy

Swan river daisies do well as container plants. Use terra-cotta pots with drainage holes and potting soil with vermiculite. Site them in a sunny spot, whether indoors or outdoors. Deadhead potted swan river daisies to keep new blooms coming.

Most swan river daisies are grown as annuals, but in warm areas, they can be grown in containers as perennials. They don't need to be repotted each year if they receive the care they need. However, if the plant's flower production drops off or you want to move it to a different, more decorative container, repot it in a similar size container using fresh potting medium.

Pests and Problems

Swan river daisies are susceptible to powdery mildew, a common foliar fungal disease. Full sun can help keep it away. Overwatering may result in root rot.

Besides slugs or snails, swan river daisies have few problems with pests. Use a slug deterrent to keep them from chewing on your plant's leaves.

How to Propagate Swan River Daisy

Propagate swan river daisy by cutting shoots from existing plants before they begin flowering. Make sure there's at least one node and two leaves on each stem cutting. Remove any foliage from the bottom half of the cutting and dip it in rooting hormone. Place the cutting in moist soilless potting mix for 15 days, keeping it moist throughout, and then test whether it has rooted by gently tugging on a leaf. Resistance indicates the cutting has rooted. Wait until the cutting displays robust new growth before transplanting it into a large container or the garden.

Swan river daisy can also be grown from dried seeds collected from fading blooms. Keep the seeds in a dark, dry place until you are ready to plant. When growing from seed for the garden or a container, sow the seeds indoors six weeks before the last spring frost, using a moist seed-starting mix in peat pots. Cover the seeds lightly. Place clear plastic bags over each pot and put them in a warm, bright spot. Remove the plastic bag every two or three days to check that the medium remains moist. When you see growth, remove the plastic bags permanently. The seeds germinate quickly, and after a period of hardening off, they are ready to set out in the garden when the weather warms.

Types of Swan River Daisy

'Blue Zephyr' Swan River Daisy

'Blue Zephyr' Swan River Daisy
Dean Schoeppner

Brachyscome iberidifolia 'Blue Zephyr' offers blue daisies with a pleasant scent on airy foliage. These beauties are a favorite option for hanging baskets and containers. Zones 9-11

'Purple Splendor' Swan River Daisy

Brachyscome iberidifolia 'Purple Splendor' blooms profusely with 1-inch purple daisies with yellow and black centers above a small ferny mound. These lightly fragrant flowers cover the foliage, particularly in temperate summer areas. It grows as an annual except in Zones 9-11, where it can be grown as a perennial.

'Blue Star' Swan River Daisy

Brachyscome iberidifolia 'Blue Star' produces stunning robin's egg blue blooms with white accents and yellow centers. This easy-going addition to the garden is low-maintenance and a welcome addition to borders and containers. Zones 9-11

Swan River Daisy Companion Plants


'Daybreak Red Stripe' Gazania
Scott Little

A perennial in hot climates, gazania is grown as an annual elsewhere. This tough plant produces bold-color, daisylike flowers from summer to frost in most growing regions. The flowers appear over toothed dark green or silver leaves (the foliage color differs between varieties). They're showy specimens in beds and borders and containers, too. Zones 4-10


pink Geraniums
Andrew Drake

Geraniums are a gardener's favorite. The old-fashioned standard for beds, borders, and containers, geranium is still one of the most popular plants today. Traditional bedding types love hot weather and hold up well to dry conditions; many offer colorful foliage. Though most geraniums are grown as annuals, they are perennials in warmer climates. Zones 10-11


white lisianthus
John Reed

Lisianthus flowers make people ooh and ahh. Some varieties of this annual look like a blue rose. Lisianthus is one of the best cut flowers—it will last in the vase for 2 to 3 weeks. Lisianthus can be challenging to grow—especially from seed—so start with established seedlings. Zones 8-10

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What colors do swan river daisies come in?

    Swan river daisies come in a variety of shades of lavender, blue, violet, yellow, and white. All colors typically have a bright yellow disk in the center, giving the plant a traditional daisy look.

  • Does swan river daisy attract pollinators?

    Swan river daisy draws bees, butterflies, hummingbirds and other beneficial wildlife to your garden. As a bonus, deer and rabbits aren't interested in munching on these plants.

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