Lucky for me, my daughter grew up to be a landscape designer and she knows pretty much everything there is to know about plants and the most common mistakes that are made. While she isn’t a big fan of geraniums, she provided me with some really useful tip.
Most types of geraniums prefer full sun and will bloom at their best in these kinds of conditions. Okay, I have planted a few in shadier locations, and while they do well, it’s the geraniums that are in full sun that seem to do the best!
Geraniums prefer loose soil that drains well. This can pose a problem for those us with clay soil. The trick is to work lots of compost into the soil and you might even want to sit the plant on a layer of stones so that the roots aren’t sitting in water. And that’s exactly what happens if you plant your geraniums directly into clay soil. Been there and done that!
Now, you are going to like this part. If you live in a harsh climate, you can still save your geraniums for next year. All you have to do is gently lift them out of the ground, shake off as much soil as you can and then store them in paper bags in your basement. Be sure to close the bag tightly as you will want to keep them out of the light so that they go into a dormant stage. Come spring, bring them up, prune them and transplant them in pots until it is warm enough to transplant outside. But, if you forget about them until it’s time for them to go into the ground, don’t worry about it. I have taken mine straight from the basement and then straight into the ground and they did quite nicely. Bringing them up early, will simply give them a headstart.
Did you know that there is such a thing as Chocolate Mint geraniums. Unfortunately, they don’t have a nice chocolate fragrance, but they do have a nice chocolate blotch of color on the leaf!
And here is something I learned quite by accident. Our ancestors once used the roots of the plant to make salves. I wonder just how many of these home remedies we have lost over the years.