The Ultimate Geranium Flower Growing Guide

Geranium Flower

Geranium Flower

Updated on 12/3/2023
Emma DowneyBy Emma Downey
Gardening Expert
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Geranium flower is well-known for their unique look and very fragrant aroma. It has been close to two centuries since the first time American gardeners fell in love with the flower known as the Geranium, and it is not hard to comprehend why they had such a strong attraction to the plant in the first place.



With their elaborately patterned leaves, which are just as stunning as the clusters of delicate flowers that they surround, geraniums are used to fill flower beds, hanging baskets, and containers. Planting geraniums is likely to be a relaxing and delightful experience for the gardener. To properly care for geranium flowers, you need to know a few fundamental suggestions.

What Are Geraniums?

It is a well-kept secret that the garden plant known as Geranium is not, in reality, a geranium. This plant is quite popular in gardens. Garden geraniums and annual geraniums are members of the genus Pelargonium, the botanical name for geraniums cultivated in outdoor settings like gardens. The garden geranium, believed to have originated in South Africa, first made its way to France in 1786. After that, it traveled to North America. The first geranium cuttings belonged to Thomas Jeffersonspread and were used to establish new generations of gardeners when given to friends and relatives.

What Are Geraniums?

What Are Geraniums?

In most of the United States, geraniums may be cultivated as annuals with reasonable success. If the conditions are appropriate, you can even grow them as perennials in extremely warm regions, such as the southern coastal portions of California. Many dedicated gardeners bring their geranium plants inside for the winter so that you may replant them in the spring. As a result, they can work with fresh soil. Others move their geraniums indoors to serve as houseplants for the duration of the colder months. Geraniums are a type of plant that is very adaptive to their environment.

Geraniums are one of the few plants that provide a wide variety of options and customizations. There are more than 300 species to pick from, and they come in a wide array of flower colors and kinds, leaves, and smells. They can be as short as six inches or develop to be many feet long with multiple blossoms. Either way, their length can vary greatly. The following are the top four types of geraniums that are in high demand at the moment:



Most people are familiar with traditional geraniums, also called zonal geraniums. Zonal geraniums are low-maintenance plants that can withstand high temperatures and dry conditions. They may produce single or double blooms in various colors, including white, pink, crimson, burgundy, yellow, orange, and purple. Zonal geraniums are also resistant to heat and dryness. Plants of the Classic, Tango, and Rocky Mountain types each display a distinct palette of colors when grown together. 

In some circles, geraniums sold under the name Regal are also known as Marsha Washington geraniums. They are recognized for their large, colorful blooms and are seen as a delicate kind; yet, when the necessary care is provided to them, they thrive. They are at their most productive in locations where the temperature is lower, as they cannot flourish in the harshest summer temperatures. Each of the cultivars Ace High, Brown's Butterfly, Blue Orchid, and the Coral Sea, is unique and noteworthy in its own way.



Ivy geraniums are well-known for the enormous flowering clumps that they generate. The leaves look similar to ivy's and have a glossy quality. Blooming of single, semi-double, and you can observe double flowers from the beginning of spring until the first frost of October each year. Try planting the Summer Showers, Contessa, or White Mesh types to have a bountiful harvest of flowers.

Geraniums that produce a perfume have leaves that feel similar to velvet and emit their unique aroma. Even though they do not make as many flowers as other varieties, many people still select them as the best option for their gardens. Even though the possible combinations are virtually limitless, Apple, apricot, and rose are some of the most ubiquitous scents. There is often a reference to the geranium scent in the cultivar name, as is the case with Chocolate Mint, Ginger, Lemon Balm, and Lime.

Suppose you are interested in growing a true hardy geranium that is a member of the Geraniaceae family. Then, you have a wide variety of options to choose from. The bulk of these plants are hardy perennials that can thrive in Zones 3 to 8, and most of these plants have vigorous rhizomes that can rapidly spread.

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 A good choice for a ground cover is geraniums, which are well-known for being highly resilient plants and quite popular. You might wish to consider planting cultivars from the genus Geranium or the hybrids Geraniumand Geranium. Both of these options are available. Because of these three hybrids, you may choose from hundreds of distinct cultivars.

Tips For Planting, Growing & Caring For Geraniums

Growing geraniums do not require a person to have previous knowledge in gardening because they are simple to grow. Geraniums are not picky about the sort of soil or fertilizer that you use, and all they truly require to grow is a little bit of bare attention here and there.

Soil for Geraniums

Geraniums do best when grown in sandy loam soil with good drainage and abundant organic matter, and Geraniums do exceptionally well when grown on this particular variety of earth. If the soil in your garden has a tendency to be on the heavier side, you should incorporate peat, compost, or perlite into it. You are strongly discouraged from making use of dung or vermiculite.

Where To Plant Geraniums

Where to Put Geraniums in Your Garden Geraniums are one of the few flowering plants that can be grown successfully in almost all gardening zones. Despite the information shown here, you may still be unsure whether geraniums must be developed in full sunshine. For geraniums to produce flowers, they need to be exposed to a large quantity of sunlight. 

However, in areas of the world that have very scorching summers, it is helpful for the plants to receive shade in the afternoon. The answer to the issue of how much sunlight geraniums require is contingent not only on the type of Geranium you're cultivating but also on the garden zone in which you reside. 



The optimal location is exposed to sunshine in the morning, shielded from the sun in the afternoon groundis well-drained. Choose a place for your geranium flower beds that is of adequate size, and then choose that location. It is possible to lessen the likelihood of a disease spreading by maintaining a proper space between individual plants.

When To Plant Geraniums

When Should Geraniums Be Planted? You shouldn't rush the planting season since geraniums can't survive temperatures lower than freezing, so they'll die if you do. On the other side, if you wait too long, there is a possibility that you may miss the low nighttime temperatures that induce flowering, and you will therefore miss the window of opportunity to harvest the blossoms. The first step in learning to grow geraniums outside is to start by planting the seeds during the appropriate year period. Wait until the last chance of frost has passed, and the temperature of your soil has reached sixty degrees Fahrenheit before you start planting anything.

Fertilizer For Geraniums



There Is Only a Tiny Bit of Fertilizer That Is Needed for Geraniums. Geraniums require only a trace quantity of fertilizer to flourish. If you provide excessive nourishment for the plants, the plant's foliage will thrive at the expense of the blooms. Even if you could locate a specialized geranium fertilizer at your neighborhood garden center, it is not required to purchase such a product. Make a solution that you may use for light fertilizing by mixing one gallon of water with two tablespoons of a water-soluble 20-20-20 fertilizer. This mixture can then be used as needed. During the period of active growth, it is recommended that this solution be applied once every three weeks.

Growing Geraniums In Pots

How to Cultivate Geraniums in Pots and Planters Have you ever wondered how geraniums may be grown in containers? It is sufficient to plant them in the ground and provide them with water to accomplish the task. Geraniums may be grown successfully in containers of any size or shape so long as the containers have drainage holes and the soil is loose and can drain effectively. 

In addition to this, the ground must be fertilized moderately and constantly irrigated. The key to successfully cultivating geraniums in containers is to situate the pots in bright and sunny regions that are shielded from areas that see a lot of wind. Growing geraniums in banks have several benefits, one of which is the convenience of bringing them inside for the winter.   



Even during the colder months of the year, geraniums may be brought indoors and maintained as a houseplant; all they need is exposure to bright light to thrive. When the last frost of the winter has melted away, you may start transferring them back outside again carefully.

Watering Geraniums

Geraniums require extensive and in-depth hydration daily. Consequently, you need to dig an irrigation furrow all the way around each plant. Because geraniums require thorough watering, you should be sure to leave an irrigation furrow around each plant so that they receive the proper amount of moisture. It will serve as a reservoir for watering the plants. 

Allows the water to collect in pools, after which it may percolate through the soil at a more leisurely pace. It is essential to enable the ground to dry in between waterings to avoid root rot. To cultivate geraniums successfully in containers, you need to water them constantly.s because the soil in pots has a propensity to get hot. When you water a plant with a soaker hose at ground level, water is kept off the leaves, reducing the risk of disease. 



Because the drainage holes help prevent root rot, you won't need to wait for the soil to get completely dry in between waterings anymore. When should geraniums be watered, and how often should they be watered? Essentially, all you will require is to keep a constant eye on your plants. It is essential to offer proper care for your geranium plants and keep them from withering. As a consequence of the cycles of withering and resurrection, the plant will produce few flowers, and its leaves will fall off.

How it is still important to remove spent flowers from the plant regularly to prevent sickness and increase overall output. When the flowers have passed their peak, pinch off the entire flower stalk and remove any leaves that have outlived their usefulness from the plants. The houseplant known as Geranium has a propensity to elongate its stems and become slender. Regular pinching of the plant's growing tips will induce branching and pruning by providing a stimulus for both processes.

Pruning Geraniums



Geranium flower is sensitive to various illnesses and pests; nevertheless, most insects and other problems steer clear of them. On the other hand, if the temperature is lower and there is more moisture in the air, there is a greater risk of botrytis and other fungal illnesses. Fungicides are available for purchase and offer some measure of protection. When plants are overwatered, there is a risk of developing edema and root rot. These are two of the potential consequences.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are geraniums annuals or perennials?

Besides the warmest parts of North America, geraniums cultivated in gardens are categorized as annuals over the whole continent of North America. You may, however, persuade the plants into becoming perennials by shielding them from the weather throughout the winter months, and this will allow the plants to thrive year after year. This technique, which is also known as "over-wintering," involves digging up garden perennials and moving them to a spot that is both cold and protected for the duration of the winter months. This approach is also known as "over-wintering." You have to transfer your geraniums grown in containers indoors so that they may overwinter there. For the plants to have healthy blooms in the spring, they must be shielded from the frost and kept warm throughout the evenings. For proper flowering to occur, it is necessary to subject the plants to cool temperatures, roughly 55 degrees Fahrenheit.

Can you grow geraniums from seed?

Even though it is possible to grow certain types of geraniums from seeds, stem cuttings have been the most popular technique for propagating geraniums for the past several hundred years. It has been because stem cuttings are easier to work with than seeds. The vast majority of geraniums may be effectively grown from stem cuttings by burying them in vermiculite or sterile soil and watering them regularly. Cultivating new plant varieties from seed makes it possible to start new plants indoors. When produced from grain, Maverick, Cameo, and Multibloom all have highly successful plants. When starting geraniums from a source, getting an early start is essential for successful growth. Midway through January, locate a warm, light spot indoors to sow your geranium seeds.

Growing geraniums indoors vs. outdoor

The requirements for tending to an outdoor geranium and an indoor geranium are identical. Both things demand a substantial amount of sunlight, a reasonable amount of watering and fertilizing, and regular upkeep and care. Growing geraniums outside require a heightened awareness of the soil's drainage capabilities and the amount of readily available moisture. The drainage holes in indoor containers are essential in ensuring that the optimum humidity is maintained in the environment. Growing geraniums in containers make it easy to transport plants indoors and outdoors in a house. If you reside in an area that experiences harsh winters, having this ability will be extremely useful. The only thing you need to do to protect your beautiful plants from the falling temperatures that occur with the shift from fall to winter is to transfer their pots inside. Geraniums thrive very well when cultivated indoors and can continue to flourish as gorgeous houseplants throughout the year. It was already mentioned, but it bears repeating since it is true. Care for geraniums grown in gardens and plants planted in containers, such as pots and window boxes, are similar. However, to begin developing buds in the spring, they require temperatures to be on the chillier side, which is necessary for them. It is advised that you transfer your plants to a more excellent region of the house to enhance blossoming, which will help the plants maintain a consistent temperature

Which other kinds of flowering plants may be grown in conjunction with geraniums?

Geraniums are an excellent choice for companion plants due to their various benefits. Because of these plants' natural capacity to fend off a wide range of insects and other pests, roses have historically been cultivated alongside these plants as companion plants. You may also plant them among other plants frequently attacked by pests, such as maize, grapes, or cabbage, which can help deter pests.

Are geraniums acceptable for hanging baskets?

Geraniums are an excellent option for hanging baskets because they produce big mounds of brilliantly colored flowers throughout the growing season. The best areas to suspend baskets are sheltered from the wind and receive a lot of sunlight. When growing geraniums inside, the hanger should be placed in the optimal location: a window facing south.

When storing geraniums for the winter, there are a few key things to remember.

Geraniums are not fussy plants by any stretch of the imagination; you can ensure that they survive the winter and that you may continue to enjoy them throughout the year by taking only a few simple steps to ensure their survival. If your plants are already enclosed within pots, there is no need to do anything special to bring them indoors. If you planted them outside in your garden or bed, you must remember to bring them inside before the first frost, or you can lose them. Carefully excavate them, then transplant them using potting soil lighter in texture in pots with a diameter of 8 inches. During this time, you will be able to increase the number of plants you have by multiplying them by splitting them by cutting them in half. Plant the new roots so that you might have a greater sense of fulfillment. Bring them inside, and choose a spot in the house that gets a lot of sunshine for them.