The Cranesbill the True Geranium

October 30, 2013 in Flowers and Bulbs by Christine

The Cranesbill the True Geranium

Geranium Sanguineum bloody cranesbillThe geranium commonly known as the cranesbill are a herbaceous clumping perennial plant. It is an excellent choice for many gardens because of its lengthy lifespan and its long lasting flowering time. The geranium is a hardy little plant that has a relatively unique style of leaf and attractive round flowers that have five petals. The word geranium is confusing to a lot of people aside from this I am going to tell you about the true geranium, the only geranium the cranesbill. These garden geraniums are so versatile that they grow in any garden with some shade or filtered light. The cranesbill geranium is given its common name from the shape of the seed pods when the petals have faded the seed heads crack open and this will then release the seeds. There are currently over four hundred species of geranium displaying their distinctive colours around the world. The cranesbill flowers from late spring to early summer and they are certainly outstanding performers.

Cranesbill Geraniums Varieties For Sale in Australia

  • Geranium sanguineum – bloody cranesbill has magenta flowers on stems around 15cm.
  • Geranium sanguineum var. striatum this flower is a lovely light pink with dark pink veins.
  • Geranium phaeum samabor – green scalloped leaves heavily marked maroon also has maroon flowers.
  • Geranium macrorrhizum – Bevans variety leaves turn rich autumn colours lovely bright cerise flowers
  • Geranium macrorrhizum Alba – flat white flowers on purple red calyces’s flowers early summer.

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Cranesbill Geranium Ground Cover

The true geranium is a low growing plant that grows from a rhizomes that spreads under ground to form large or compact ground cover clumps. Colours of the cranesbill geranium flowers come in pure white and shades of pink, purple or blue with easily noticeable veining. The veining can also be noticed in the long palm style leaves which also stand out due to their distinctive cleft. The hardy geranium flowers are also attractively symmetrical with five very similar petals radiating out from the centre. Overall geraniums are a hardy plant, with most climates around the world, including Australia, being able to accommodate at least a few species. They are extremely versatile in their habitats. You can find geraniums in the wild from low grasslands to woodlands, mild winter areas to areas of extreme cold. This makes them perfect for any garden setting from rock gardens, perennial borders, and woodland settings.

Cranesbill Geranium Care

Geraniums don’t like the soil that they are growing in to be waterlogged primarily geraniums prefer a moderately fertilised medium that is well drained. Automatic watering systems are an excellent way to make sure your plants get just the right amount of moisture. If you notice that the blooms are a bit faded during a hot summer and the foliage is looking tired by all means trim the plant back and then give it a good watering to bring the geraniums back to its full splendour and this will encourage repeat flowering. Lastly you will have to prune your cranesbill geranium after flowering to keep them neat and compact.

Cranesbill Geranium Propagation

To propagate these wonderful plants you can simply divide them in early spring or early autumn this will retain the original characteristics, you can also propagate by seeds but don’t expect the seeds to be exact same as the parent plants because this wont happen but you never know what the outcome will be this is what makes sowing seeds so exciting. It is best to sow the seed in the winter months in seed raising mix and you should see the seeds germinate in spring when the weather warms up.

These are the most important things to know about the cranesbill geranium how to grow, prune your geranium and how easy they are to look after in any garden setting.

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