Growing Geranium Plants &
Organic Geranium Care

Geranium plants are easy to grow and care for giving you great ground cover and summer-long color in the garden. Create effective single color displays by positioning pots up garden stairways or let rip with a feast of colors across your garden.

Growing Geranium Plants: Plant Snapshot

Growing Geranium Plants
  • Geranium (Geranium / Pelargonium depending on variety)
  • Annual or perennial? Annuals and perennials
  • Recommended varieties (by color):
    • Blue: Johnson’s Blue
    • Pink: Nodosum, Maculatum, Biokovo, Ingwersen’s Variety, Bressingham’s Delights
    • Red: Cranesbill geranium, dwarf-blooded geranium
    • Violet: Ann Folkard, Magnificum, Gravetye
    • White: Kashmir White, Album, Maroon Beauty
  • Recommended USDA Hardiness zones: 4 to 10
  • Mature Height: 4 to 36 inches (10 to 90 cm) depending on variety
  • Mature Spread: 10 to 24 inches (25 to 60 cm) depending on variety
  • Sun Requirements: Partial shade, partial sun to full sun
  • Blooming season: mid & late spring, early, mid & late summer, early & mid fall
  • Cold tolerance (annuals only): Half-Hardy Geranium can tolerate cold, wet, damp weather but can be damaged or killed by frost.
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Growing Geraniums Outdoors: Planting the Seed, Transplanting and/or Root Division

Where to Find Planting Supplies...

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Sow geranium seeds in early spring. Hard geranium seeds benefit from being chipped. Since their seed coats stop moisture absorption, nicking it with a sharp knife may increase germination success. Grow in modules filled with sieved compost or an organic nutrient-rich seed starting mix.

Take stem cuttings from plants towards the end of the summer to use as new plants for next season. Cut stem sections with two or three leaf sections. Dip in an organic rooting gel and place up to three stems in a pot filled with gritty compost. Water and keep on a windowsill or in a greenhouse. Plants should be kept at a fairly even temperature.

Snapshot: Planting Geraniums

  • Germination soil temperature: 70 to 75 degrees F (21 to 24 C)
  • Distance between plants: about 12 inches (30 cm)
  • Planting depth: plant with roots just below soil level
  • Days to germination: 7 to 21 days
  • Preferred soil pH (see soil pH tester for more information): 6 to 8
  • Root division information (perennials only):
    • Root system type (clumping, spreading, rhizome or tuber): clumping
    • Roots division frequency: Every 3 to 4 years
    • In which season should dividing occur? Fall or early spring
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Care of Geraniums: Fertilizing, Watering & Pruning Geraniums & How to Overwinter Geraniums

Where to Find Growing & Plant Care Supplies...

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Feed monthly between spring and fall with an organic seaweed liquid fertilizer. Cutting back plants after flowering encourages new growth and a second or third flush of flowers.

Choose plants to overwinter that are healthy and show no signs of disease. Once the risk of frost has passed, prune plants down to a third of their size and reposition or plant outside.

Standard flower watering guidelines apply.

Snapshot: Geranium Care

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Geranium Cuttings / Harvesting Geraniums

Geraniums provide color around your garden throughout the summer. They can also be used to add to floral displays. Cut stems with geranium florets just coming into bloom early in the morning or during the evening.

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Growing Geranium Plants: Pests & Diseases

Geraniums that have been propagated from seeds are more likely to be disease free. Pay close attention to leaves for signs of discoloration and wilting. Removing and destroying affected leaves early helps to keep your plants healthy.

The following pests and diseases have been known to affect the success of growing Geraniums (see Organic Garden Pest Control for information about how to prevent and address pests and diseases)...

Pests

  • Aphids
  • Cottony cushion scale
  • Cyclamen mite
  • Foliage-feeding caterpillars
  • Mealybugs
  • Spider mites
  • Thrips
  • Weevils
  • Whiteflies

Diseases

  • Armillaria root rot
  • Bacterial leaf spot and blight
  • Blackleg, root and stem rot
  • Crown gall
  • Fasciation
  • Gray mold
  • Leaf spots
  • Rust
  • Verticillium wilt
  • Viruses
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YOUR Experience & Advice About Growing Geranium Plants

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