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Geraniums are a great bedding plant and bring a feel of the Mediterranean to your garden with their vibrant blooms and striking leaves.
Bedding Geraniums are actually Pelagoniums. They belong to the same plant family as the hardy Geranium but are tender perennials and so are not frost hardy in cold regions. They include zonal, fancy leaved, ivy, regal, stellars, dwarf and scented geraniums.
Geraniums can be grown easily indoor or out, and look great in hanging baskets or patio containers. You can also plant them outside directly into beds and they are often used in floral displays to great effect.
As geraniums are Mediterranean plants they require plenty of sunshine. Place them in a sunny position that receives at least 6-8 hours of sunlight a day. If growing indoors ensure you have lots of light and indoor temperatures of around 65-70 F during the day and 55 F at night. Geraniums are not hardy so do not plant outside until the risk of frost has passed.
Geraniums require a free draining soil and do not like to be waterlogged, so mix 30% of perlite into your compost mix. Incorporate a general fertiliser into the soil when planting and space plants about 20-25 cm apart.
Water deeply when the soil dries out, which may be daily for pots during hot weather. Feed weekly during the growing season with a soluble fertiliser. Dead head flowers regularly to remove dead blooms in order keep your plants repeat flowering. You may need to re-pot your plants at the end of the growing season when they become overgrown.
You can propagate geraniums easily through cuttings or bring plants inside from the garden by digging them up and potting them on.
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