How to save geraniums for next year
Before turning into grandma’s favorite flower, the well-known geranium experienced a period of universal love and reverence. Let’s start with the fact that the first specimens of these plants arrived in England from Africa at the beginning of the 17th century. Wondering how to preserve geraniums In unusual conditions for her, royal botanists began to create plant hybrids. It is with them that we now decorate our window sills.
In the 20s of the 19th century, geranium became the most common indoor and garden plant in London. At the same time, the flower appears in our region. Some geranium species are left to grow in the wild. At the same time, they can easily tolerate cold weather. But most varieties of the plant are still heat-loving. In winter, they hibernate. And you need to help your favorite flower survive this period.
How to preserve geraniums in winter
Despite the fact that geraniums are known for their hardiness, they still require specific care during the cold season. There are two simple ways you can make sure your flowers survive the winter. Be sure that they will delight you with their magnificence next season!
Propagation of geraniums through shoots
Propagating geraniums through shoots is a proven way to provide yourself with a supply of new plants and preserve them until spring. Follow the step-by-step procedure to do it right:
- Select mature plants. Select mature and healthy geraniums that you would like to propagate. The best period for this is late summer or early autumn.
- Prepare your tools. To propagate geraniums you will need pruning shears, wound treatment, pots and a special soil mixture.
- Separate the shoots. Carefully select shoots about 7–10 cm long with 2–3 pairs of leaves. Cut the shoots at an angle, leaving a small piece of trunk for the parent plant.
- Prepare the soil. Fill the pots with soil and moisten it. Then make shallow holes to plant the shoots.
- Plant shoots. Place the shoots in the holes and gently compact the soil around the shoots.
- Create a mini greenhouse. To provide moisture and protection from the cold, place the pots in a mini-greenhouse or cover them with plastic bags.
- Take care of the cuttings. Moisten the soil regularly and provide good lighting for the cuttings. As the plants grow, you can transplant them into larger pots.
Preserving geraniums in a dormant state in winter
If you don’t want to bother with propagation by cuttings, then another way to preserve geraniums is to transfer the flowers to a winter dormant state:
- Prepare the plant for winter. When night temperatures begin to drop to 7–10 °C, stop feeding the geranium and reduce watering. This will help the plant gradually go into a dormant state.
- Prune geraniums. After the first frost, trim the tops of the plants to a height of about 10-15 cm. This will help the plant conserve energy and prevent cold damage.
- Move the geraniums to a cool place. Move potted geraniums to a cool, but not frosty place. For example, in a basement or garage. The temperature should be around 7–10 °C.
- Limit watering. In winter, geraniums require a minimal amount of water. Water them only when the soil is completely dry.
By following these two simple methods, you can successfully preserve your geraniums until spring. Propagating through shoots and going dormant over winter are great ways to ensure the longevity and beauty of your geraniums so you can enjoy them every year. How do you take care of your favorite flowers? If you follow some completely different method, be sure to share it in the comments. And, of course, good luck with your gardening!