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How to Grow Geraniums

Pelargonium

Geraniums are easy to grow annuals that fit well in home gardens, container gardens, flower beds, and even as house plants. We like them for their big, bright bloom, and because they are so easy to grow almost anywhere. Geraniums make great flowers for kids.

Home gardeners use Geranium plants in a wide variety of ways. They are well suited for container gardens by themselves or with other flowers. You can use them to make a potted gift for a friend for any occasion. They grow well in flower gardens along with your other favorites.

Geraniums are native to semi arid regions of southern Africa.

When the weather gets cold these hardy plants will withstand light frosts and patiently await transplanting into containers to move them indoors. Smaller, dwarf varieties make the best house plants. Geraniums like lots of sun. So, put them in a sunny window or room. They prefer temperatures below 70 degrees.

Plant Height: 12" - 15"

Flowers Bloom: Summer thru Fall.


Indoors:

Geraniums live approximately 18 months. They will last over the winter as indoors houseplants.

Getting them to bloom indoors is sometimes a little difficult.,as they often go dormant, or grow slowly. After transplanting, place them in a cool, but sunny location. Cut them back by about 1/3. Don't overwater . They prefer soil on the dry side. Fertilize once a month.

If you want to grow cuttings, snip off several new growths, about 3-4 inches in length. Then stick them in moist potting soil. Keep the soil moist and they will root. Comes spring they are just about the right size for planting in a container on the porch or directly in the garden.


Outdoors:

Geraniums can be grown from seed or cuttings. But, most people buy small plants from garden stores at very low prices and plant them around the garden and in containers. Plant them in full or partial shade.

Geranium plants grow well in heavier, clay soils. For optimum growth, use a mixture of  two parts clay, one part sand, and one part and humus.While they will tolerate poor soil, add compost and a general purpose fertilizer to maximize growth and plant health.

By mid-summer, your geranium plant will be growing bright white, red or pink blooms. They will continuously bloom all the way to the first frost and beyond.

Just before blooming, stop adding nitrogen. Too much nitrogen in the soil, can result in all leaves and no flowers. Cool nights will also promote blooms.

Allow the soil to dry between watering. Over watering results in yellowing of leaves.

Tip: To promote continuous blooming, pinch or cut off the blooms after they die.


Insects and Disease:

Yet one more benefit of these plants is they are seldom bothered by insects and diseases. In literally decades, of growing geraniums, we have never sprayed for either insects or disease. We hope you have the same experience. But, if a problem  does occurs, treat it early.


Hardiness:

Here is one annual that will withstand the cold. It is among the hardiest of annuals and will compete with Mums for the last flower of the year.


More Information:

Geraniums at Garden Hobbies

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