UACES Facebook Geraniums

Geraniums

 (November 2012)

QuestionI have about 10 large geranium plants, is there any way I can keep them until next year?

Answer You have several options with geraniums. They form a fairly woody stalk compared to other summer annuals, so they can be stored as they are in your garage or under the house in a crawl space. Don’t cut them back when you move them in, since they will die back some during storage. Next spring, cut them back, begin to water, and they should come back to life. An old fashioned method that used to be common was to lift the plants out of the pots and store them dry, hanging upside down in the attic until the following spring. If they freeze during storage they will rot, but provided you prevent freezing they should come back.


  (November 2012)

QuestionI have about 10 large geranium plants, is there any way I can keep them until next year?

Answer You have several options with geraniums. They form a fairly woody stalk compared to other summer annuals, so they can be stored as they are in your garage or under the house in a crawl space. Don’t cut them back when you move them in, since they will die back some during storage. Next spring, cut them back, begin to water, and they should come back to life. An old fashioned method that used to be common was to lift the plants out of the pots and store them dry, hanging upside down in the attic until the following spring. If they freeze during storage they will rot, but provided you prevent freezing they should come back.


 (October 2010)

QuestionWe buy geraniums every year and put them in pots. This year, we have a particularly beautiful color we would like to save through the winter. I know there are different types of geraniums; one that can be kept year after year and one that is normally only good for one season. How do you know which variety you have? Also, can you buy true geraniums in northwest Arkansas? Do you recommend trying to store geraniums during the winter and if you do, what method would you use?

Answer You have several options. One is to move the plants indoors and treat them as houseplants, but they don't like that very much--low humidity and light levels tend to make them leggy. You can store them in your garage in their pots and ignore for the winter. An old fashioned way is to take them out of the pots and hang them dry in the basement or attic. They may or may not survive that way. In any instance, pot them or move them back outside in early spring, cut them back and fertilize. They are woodier than most annuals and can go dormant and survive as long as they don't freeze. In the scheme of things, buying new plants each year is probably going to be easier.


(October 2005)

QuestionI have several plants that I would like to keep over the winter. Mosquito plant, Mexican heather and begonias. Are any of these winter hardy in central Arkansas? If so, what can I do to get them through? If not, how can I over winter them inside? Also, do I need to cover my gardenia bush for the winter and if so what is the best material to use for cover?

AnswerExcept for the gardenia, none of the plants you mentioned are reliably winter hardy in central Arkansas. Mexican heather and some begonias have managed to survive a few of our winters, but you shouldn’t count on it. To guarantee these plants back in your garden next season, you will need to either move them indoors or take cuttings for new starts. I would advocate the latter, if these plants are in the ground. The mosquito plant—a scented geranium is not going to make it, even with extra mulch, so move it indoors or store it in your garage. For the Mexican heather and begonias, after taking some cuttings, add extra mulch when the weather turns cool and see what you have next spring. Gardenias only need protection if the weather gets below 15 – 20 degrees. If needed, cover with something porous—a sheet, blanket, or cardboard box.


 

Question April 2005 - I kept a dozen pots of geraniums in my basement all winter, watering them about once a month. As of right now I have them outside, where I have taken off all the old dead leaves and blooms. The plants have continued to grow, thank goodness. They now have long, leggy, stems with like one leaf on the top of them stem. I know I am supposed to cut them back, but I don't know how far. Do I cut off the new growth? If so, how low to the soil in the pot?

Answer I would cut them back by at least half, otherwise they will be long and leggy in bloom. Begin fertilization and water more frequently to get them blooming. Geraniums typically bloom best in cooler conditions than in the hottest part of summer. Next year, you may want to bring them out a bit earlier, so they can recover and start blooming before it gets too hot.


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