Geraniums (Geranium spp.) are popular garden plants and it is not hard to see why. They are hardy perennials that require little care while providing lovely blooms almost all year round. Flowering is mainly in late spring to early autumn, attracting plenty of beneficial insects such as butterflies and bees. They are sometimes confused with pelargoniums.
Common Problems with Geraniums
- Yellow leaves – If the geranium’s leaves turn yellow, it may be an indication you are watering too little or too much.
- Lack of flowers – This may mean that there is not enough sunlight. Move it to a new position where it gets more exposure to the sun.
- Over watering – Hardy geraniums can become prone to fungal disease if watered overhead.
- Not pruning regularly – Geranium plants may become scraggly if not pruned regularly. Trim it to encourage new leaf growth.
Watering: Allow the soil to dry between watering. Usually when the leaves show signs of drooping, it’s time to provide geraniums with small amounts of water.
Light: Geraniums grow well both in full sun and partial shade.
Temperature: A temperature range of between 50 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit or 10 to 24 degrees celsius suits geraniums best.
Soil: Geranium plants prefer humus-rich soil. They are happy both in the ground and in pots especially on window sills.
Fertiliser: Geraniums are quite happy without regular feeding. An annual application of compost will do the trick.
Pruning: Regular pruning to remove older leaves and leggy stems will help to keep the geranium looking fresh and green instead of growing scraggly. It is also useful to separate clumps of geranium plants every 2 to 3 years, and re-plant them spaced apart.
Propagation: Geraniums can easily be grown from cuttings. Just take a short cutting with stem and leaves, dip it into rooting hormone and grow it in moist soil. They are also capable of self-seeding although growing them from seed isn’t as easy as cuttings.
Fun Fact about Geraniums
Geraniums are known to be toxic to Japanese beetles, so you will not have to worry about having beetles in the garden.