Geraniums have been a perennial favorite among gardeners for a very long time. They are delightfully fragrant, brightly colored, and simple to cultivate. Here is a guide on producing geraniums in your yard or indoor space! Pelargonium is sometimes referred to as geraniums or stork's bills. (You have not arrived at the page for "hardy geraniums," commonly known as cranesbills.)
Geraniums are often brought within for the winter, although they may be kept outside during warmer months. Alternately, if they are brought indoors and given adequate light, they can bloom continuously throughout the year.
Dutch merchants traveled to South Africa in the early 18th century to bring geranium plants back to Europe. These traders brought the plants back to Europe under the common name "geraniums." The fact that these new plants looked so much like the hardy wild geraniums already thriving in Europe prompted botanists to classify them into the same genus as their predecessors incorrectly.
Carl Linnaeus, a botanist from Sweden, first assigned them to the genus Geranium in 1753. When it was later discovered that these new "geraniums" differed from European geraniums in the shape of their petals, the number of stamens, and other factors, they were reclassified under the genus Pelargonium, which means "stork's bill." This is a reference to their seedpod's long, sharply pointed shape.
However, their old common name has endured, and most people continue to refer to this plant as "geranium," even though the correct term is "pelargonium."
Geraniums are versatile plants that may be cultivated either as annual blooms or as houseplants. They may be maintained outside in a sunny place during the warmer months of the year (between the dates on which frost is expected in your area), but only during those months.
When nightly temperatures drop below 55 degrees Fahrenheit (13 degrees Celsius), you should transfer any geraniums you intend to preserve as houseplants indoors. This should be done in the late summer or early fall.
When purchasing geraniums, it is essential to pay particular attention to the color and size. Healthy leaves won't have any discoloration on them or underneath them, and the stems won't be rambling but relatively solid. Be cautious to steer clear of any plants that exhibit evident indications of being infested by pests.
Choose a potting combination that drains effectively rather than dense and clay-based soil when planting pots. Geraniums do not like to be grown in too wet or compacted soil.
Put the plants somewhere where they will get at least four to six hours of sunshine daily for the best possible flowering.
After allowing the soil to dry up to some degree in between waterings, the soil should be thoroughly watered.
Reduce the amount of water you give your plant over the winter, but do not allow the soil around the roots to become completely dry. Geraniums provide their most outstanding results when allowed to enter a hibernation period throughout the winter months, during which they use significantly less water and produce little to no new growth. Instructions for further overwintering can be found below.
Geraniums that have spent the summer outside can be brought inside to continue their lives as houseplants as long as they receive enough sunlight. In northern latitudes, the sun's rays may not be intense enough toward the end of winter for certain kinds to produce buds.
Before the first autumn frost (you can find out when the first frost is expected in your area here), remove the plants and use a clean, sharp knife to trim the stems back in a shapely manner to a length of approximately 6 to 8 inches. They should not have to support large quantities of leaves in an area with a low amount of sunlight since they will enter there. You may quickly increase your plants by taking cuttings from a couple of the stems and allowing them to root.
The "mother plant" should be moved to the tiniest container possible, with only enough room for the roots to grow, and ordinary potting soil should be used to fill the pot.
The plants should be kept in the shade for a week, after which they should be moved to a sunny location (they require as much sunlight as they can obtain), and they should be kept cold.
Geraniums thrive in temperatures ranging from 50 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit (10 to 16 degrees Celsius) at night during the winter months. However, they can endure temperatures as low as 32 degrees Celsius Fahrenheit (0 degrees Celsius) and as high as 80 degrees Fahrenheit (27 degrees Celsius) as long as they are kept relatively dry.
Remove the old leaves before the new spring growth emerges and replace them with fresh ones.
Maintaining the newly established growth is the only challenge that can compete with showing it. And to assist you with that here is some information:
Only water the plant when the leaves begin to show indications of wilting, and then only a very minimal quantity. It is crucial that the plants not be fertilized or fed, and it is essential that these plants have some time to relax. You will need to pinch back your overwintered geraniums in February if you want them to bloom in time for Memorial Day. After the cold winter has gone and there is no longer any risk of frost, you may move the plants outside and either put them in beds or pots, depending on your preference.
The Zonal or Common Geraniums, also known as Pelargonium x hortorum, do well when grown in pots (as well as outdoors). The Ivy-Leaf Geranium, also known as Pelargonium peltatum, is a plant that is commonly used for pools, hanging baskets, and window boxes.
The majority of geraniums may be propagated from stem cuttings by placing them in soil, coarse sand, water, perlite, or another rooting medium.
Make an angled incision about four inches down from the top of the stem, just above the node from which the leaves emerge, using a clean, sharp knife. To a point slightly below a node, trim the cutting. Remove any buds you find, as well as all but two or three of the leaves and the stipules that look like leaves and are located at the base of the leaf stalks.
The cut end of the stem will seal and remain healthy if it is rolled in the newspaper or left in the shade for twenty-four hours after it has been cut.
Place the stem in a container filled with rooting material that has been hydrated, and then put it in a warm location with some shade for two days. After then, there will be some slicing indirect sunlight. Just enough water should be added to the medium.
Crushed geranium leaves can be used on wounds of a mild nature to staunch the flow of blood.
Scarlet geranium is a flower that conveys the meaning of foolishness in the language of flowers. Learn more about the symbolism of these flowers here.
Because geraniums are known to be harmful to Japanese beetles, you won't have to be concerned about those obnoxious insects in your garden.
Geraniums have been known to induce nausea and vomiting in both young children and animals (such as cats and dogs). Thus it is essential to keep these plants out of the reach of youngsters and pets that are naturally interested.
Low light, excessive or insufficient watering, and other extremes can all be sources of trouble. The leaves will turn yellow as a warning sign that you are either not watering enough or overwatering the plant. In this instance, you should make an effort to dampen the geraniums evenly and relocate them to a more brightly lit area.