gerbera jamesonii has short vase life characterized by bending of floral stem (scape). with the purpose to extend gerbera vase life, three different cacl2 concentrations (0.1, 0.5 and 1.0%) were tested in duela and shirlaine varieties. weight loss of whole flower and ligules was less than in control with 0.5% and 1.0%concentrations. whole flower and ligules weight was reduced with 0.5% and 1.0% concentrations when compared to control. 0.5% concentration was best treatment; it increased average vase life (25 d for duela and 24 d for shirlaine). floral stems treated with built up cacl2 more ca+2in apex (25.33 ug g-1 for duela and 64.0 ug g-1 for shirlaine), lasting erect longer than control (9.67 ug g-1 for duela and 13.67 ug g-1 for shirlaine). with 0.5% concentration a second experiment was performed to assess total carotenes, anthocyanins (pelargonidin, cyanidin) and phenols concentration changes in ligules. shirlaine's anthocyanins did not change in treatments. phenols increased 21% in shirlaine and 40% in duela with regards their initial concentration, in contrast carotenes decreased 60% and 35% at the end of vase life, respectively. interfascicular tissue is more lignified in cv duela than in cv shirlaine, giving it more resistance. the lignified relative area (%) on scape's medium region was greater in duela (7%) than in shirlaine (4%). greater stem resistance in duela is explained by its anatomy and lignification, but in both varieties cacl2was effective to delay senescence and scape's bent.