Hardy Geranium Plants for Sale Online
Hardy Geraniums are easy-to-grow garden favorites. They thrive across many hardiness zones in the United States. Geraniums are known for their colorful flowers and well-behaved mounding habit. Cranesbill Geraniums thrive in full sun through partial shade and are tolerant of a wide variety of soil conditions but prefer well-drained soil. They are best when planted in the front of the mixed border, in containers, or used as a spreading ground cover that attracts butterflies.
Their deeply-cut foliage and bright flowers can really be admired when planted at the edges of walkways or paths. They have also become a favorite Rock Garden Plant due to their ability to withstand long periods of drought. The flowers are a source of food for pollinators, including bees and butterflies. The best part about Hardy Geraniums is deer-resistance, which means you can enjoy these plants in your garden even if you live in a deer country.
Growing Hardy Geraniums in the Garden
Hardy geraniums prefer well-drained, moderately rich soil. Most types will thrive in either full sun or part shade and prefer dry soil conditions. Geranium plants will grow where few other plants will. Once established, they will also require no additional water from the gardener.
Hardy geraniums are relatively trouble-free plants and should not be confused with the annual geranium plants sold in the spring. Annual Geraniums are not geraniums at all. These are often confused by beginning gardeners. As they are often called, annual geraniums or Zonal Geraniums are actually members of the pelargonium family.
Light Requirements for Perennial Geraniums
Hardy geraniums are tolerant of a wide range of sun exposure conditions. To enjoy the best flowering and most vigorous geranium plants, plant them in full sun or a partially shaded area of the garden. If cranesbill geraniums are grown in hot, full sun, provide regular water until they are fully established. Certain hardy geraniums can tolerate full shade, but they won't blossom as much as other plants that have been planted in full sun.
Choosing the best soil for Perennial Geraniums
Geraniums are not very picky when it comes to soil pH, but a neutral to slightly acidic soil is preferred. Cranesbill geraniums prefer well-drained soil with even moisture, though they will tolerate relatively dry soil.
Watering of your Perennial Geraniums
Geraniums are a low-maintenance flowering perennial. After your plants are established, they will only need additional watering during periods of extreme drought and heat. Geraniums are sometimes affected by fungal diseases when watered heavily, so err on the side of caution when deciding to water or not.
When you do water, be careful not to overly saturate the soil or water the foliage excessively, as this can cause black spots on the leaves. Black Spots are rarely fatal but can make your plant unsightly for some time. Geraniums overall are disease-resistant plants when adequately cared for.
Fertilizing Hardy Geraniums
Unless your soil is very lean, hardy geraniums will do fine with no additional feeding other than a yearly application of a balanced fertilizer such as Espoma Flower-Tone. Poor soils may require an additional summer feeding with a Flower-tone. As will most perennials that bloom over an extended period, fertilizer applications will boost the quality of the flowers and, in some cases, even extend the bloom period.
How to Divide Hardy Geraniums
Most hardy geraniums will live longer if divided every 3 to 5 years. You can divide more frequently to keep them from spreading or to increase the volume of your geraniums when using them as a groundcover. If you notice the center of your geraniums starting to thin or die out, it is time to divide.
Divide geraniums in the early spring to attain the best results. Dividing early in the spring gives the plants time to establish a sound root system before the summer heat arrives. To split the plant, carefully dig it up and shake the soil off the roots, careful not to damage the roots.
Use a hand trowel or sharp knife to separate the clump, ensuring that each division has a root section and as many leaves as possible. Replant each new plant at the original depth, and water the plants well for a few weeks to reduce stress.
Pruning Hardy Geranium Plants
Hardy geraniums require little care during the growing season. Geraniums can get a bit worn looking after blooming. Shearing the plants back to basal growth (Ground Level) will improve their appearance and encourage them to rebloom. The Sheared plants are quick to fill back in beautiful geranium plants again. Shearing can also be done in the late fall or early winter to give your garden a tidy appearance.
Using Perennial Geraniums in the Garden
Hardy Geraniums make excellent groundcovers. They are not bullies and will co-exist with other types of perennials in the landscape. Geraniums can be interplanted with bulbs like Daffodils or tulips. After the spring bulbs flower in the early spring, Geranium Plants are a great way to hide the bulbs' dying foliage.