Saturday, November 14, 2015

Geraniums: Make them live again!

            Geraniums have got to be one of the toughest bedding/hanging basket/window box/planter flowers out there. They can handle the heat, the dry, the parched (guess that’s the same as dry, only drier), the cold….

            As a kid every Sunday we would stop and water my Grandpa and Grandma’s cemetery flowers while on our way to visit my other Grandpa and Grandma. In the urn were Geraniums and Spikes; every Sunday they’d get watered, and that would have to last them through the week. And it always did. They are certainly tough little splashes of color.

             They are good plants to put in those area you know don’t get large amounts of water, or much water at all. Once they “catch” and start growing they are rather indestructible; about all that bugs them is an errant basketball or Frisbee.

            Why am I telling you this now? Because not only were they hardy during the hottest summer on record, they can also withstand being neglected during winter storage in your attached garage or coolest part of the basement. And why would you want to store and neglect them? To bring them out again next spring and watch them get bigger and bushier throughout next year’s growing season.

            Now you don’t totally neglect them throughout the winter; you give them a little drink once a month. And just before you introduce them back into the landscape next spring you pick off all the dead and weak stuff, and give them good water soaking.

            Resist giving them a liquid fertilizer drink right off the bat. Think about someone waking you up from a sound sleep with a coal shovel pouring a big Thanksgiving Day meal down your throat. Let them wake up a bit first.

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