Thursday, February 24, 2011

EMG: Geraniums

P.S. I was looking up the Wikipedia article on Geraniums and there seems to be some confusion. These are generally called Geraniums here but in the US these plants are called Pelargoniums. If you go to a nursery here and ask for Pelargoniums they will not send you back empty handed. But asking for Geraniums will get you these plants.  You can read the corresponding Wikipedia articles here and here

Geraniums are an amazing plants for a home with atleast a couple of hours of sunlight. These plants do very well in containers and come in various colors. They can be overwatered or even ignored for a couple of days and still do pretty well. They grow very well in containers and do not invade your garden space by spreading out horizontally or vertically. No pruning, no bugs and not much care. What else can we ask for in a EMG plant.

The entire blooming process itself is very beautiful. The stem grows out longer and pearl like structures show up. They bloom one by one and last for a few days. Geraniums also make great border plants. They can be fed a handful of compost once a month and like moist soil. These can also be used as border plants in large spaces by planting the various colored varieties in sequence.

Some pictures of the ones at home.

A close up of the flowers

The hanging variety of the Geranium.

The pearl like structures from which the flowers bloom

Opening ceremony

All bloomed

And a picture of my Geranium collection. The pink and white ones are a few months old in the garden, the red one in the foreground is more than a year old and is still only about a foot high. Blooms throughout the year. The hanging pot is not in the pic. In the left background you can see the heavily pruned Jasmine plant.

Geraniums as border plants.

Scented geraniums are also available but I do not have them at home nor have I found them at local nurseries. Need to check if Lalbagh has any

Geraniums Summary

Light: Sunlight definitely required for atleast a couple of hours a day.
Watering: Very tolerant for overwatering. Either water lightly on a daily basis or thoroughly every couple of days. In summer you may have to water it more than once depending on how much sun it is getting.
Plant does not need any kind of pruning at all. It maintains a certain size and does not grow more than a foot tall in your pot. Larger the pot, larger the plant.
Add a handful of compost to the soil every month to improve the texture of the soil and also help the plant.

This should do well in any sunny area and should be possible to grow all around India. Its non-invasive growth makes it a wonderful plant to have in the balcony.


jsb said...

Nice post, Natti. Thanks for the info about growing geraniums. I see now that I have to move my geranium plant to the balcony that gets sun.

Vikas said...

Good information .... thanks. one more question, the pictures that you have shown have few flowers, how to get the bunch full of flowers as we see in some pictures ?

Asha said...

Hi Natti,

I came here searching if I could grow some portulaca (table rose) on my window sill. Thanks for the info there.

My understanding is that geraniums are the ones that have the sturdy stem where as Pelargoniums are the hanging variety.

After a few years of growth, they grow leggy and will do well with pruning.

Vibha said...

Hi Natti,
Would you share some geranium seeds with me? I live in bangalore and could not find the hanging variety of geranium even in lalbaugh. So I am asking.

Natti said...

Hi Vibha,
I do not have the geranium plant anymore. It died a few months back due to neglect. I am sure you can find these in nurseries in Whitefiled and Varthur. If not you can always try the one in Jeevan Bhima Nagar.
Surprised that you are unable to find this in Lalbagh