One of the longest bloomers in the garden, hardy geranium bears little flowers for months at a time. It produces jewel-tone, saucer-shape flowers and mounds of handsome, lobed foliage. It needs full sun, but otherwise it is a tough and reliable plant, thriving in a wide assortment of soils. Many of the best are hybrids. Perennial geraniums may form large colonies.
Winchester Gardens generally stocks this item.
- When buying geraniums, look for color and size. Healthy leaves will have no discoloration on or below them and stems will be sturdy, not straggly. Be sure to avoid any plants with obvious signs of pests as well.
- Place plants in pots with drainage holes to avoid root rot. Do not use a saucer beneath your pot unless filled with pebbles.
- Use soil-less potting mixture (not dirt) when planting in containers.
- For maximum bloom, place the plants in an area where they will get 4-6 hours of sunlight daily.
- Allow to dry between waterings, then water thoroughly.
- During the winter water much less, but do not let the roots dry out.
- To encourage blooming, deadhead spent flowers.
- To promote bushiness and avoid legginess, pinch the stems.
- During active growing months, fertilize every 2 weeks. Use a water-soluable fertilizer at half strength. Don’t fertilize in winter.
- Geraniums can be re-potted as needed during the spring to be refreshed.
Flowering tobacco – Use _Nicotiana_ to add sweet fragrance to your planting of geraniums.
Pentas – With its large heads of colorful flowers, _Pentas_ looks great with geranium — and appreciates the same growing conditions.
Fountaingrass – Enhance geranium’s form with the texture and rich color of purple fountaingrass.