A Guide On Caring For Geraniums In Pots

A Guide On Caring For Geraniums In Pots

Caring for geraniums in pots is significant in ensuring you provide them with the right growing conditions causing them to thrive.

Like all other plants (Pelargonium xhortorum) or geraniums have a good share of problems they face when growing.  The issues range from seedlings damping off to tall thin plants.

Luckily, we can fix these problems easily if only we know the best practices involved when growing and caring for these plants.  This is especially important when you choose to grow geraniums in pots.

In this post, we will share the best care for geraniums, including the problems they face.  But, before that, let’s look at the type of geraniums you can grow in pots.

The Best Geranium Types To Grow In Pots

The best geranium types to grow in pots are those that have compact growth.  These types have the best chances to succeed, and they include:

  • Marble Gray (Pelargonium citronellum) – This type is best grown for foliage instead of flowers.  Their foliage is highly fragrant and smells like rose, mint, lemon, chocolate or even cinnamon.
  • Ivy-leafed Geraniums (Pelargonium peltatum– Their leaves resemble ivy plant leaves and they have a trailing habit.  They are commonly used in hanging window boxes and baskets.

Best Geranium Types To Grow In Pots

  • Zonal Geraniums or Common Geraniums (Pelargonium x hortorum) – This type has distinct leaf markings that include selections with silver leaves,  tri-colored leaves, fancy leaves, and leaves with white markings.  Their flower colors are usually red, pink, or white.
  • Martha Washington Geraniums (Pelargonium x domesticum) – They flower in the winter and are available from many florists.  Like the Mabel Gray type, they are not heat-tolerant and will not perform as well outdoors as the common geranium will.

Read more about Gorgeous Flowers Squirrels Won’t Eat

Growing And Caring For Geraniums In Pots

Starting From Seeds Vs. Planting Cuttings

Most geranium plants are grown from cuttings, while a good number are grown from seeds.  You can start from sources indoors before transplanting them into pots.  The biggest challenge that seedlings face is damping-off during germination.

To control this, ensure that you clean the containers used for starting seeds and ensure they have enough drainage.  Wash your containers with soapy water and disinfect them by dipping them in a solution that contains one part chlorine and nine parts water.  Do the same when propagating your geranium plants from cuttings.

Selecting Your Pots

Growing geraniums in pots require large containers, window boxes, or hanging boxes.  There are two factors to consider when selecting the right pot.  Consider the size of the geranium plant that should guide you to the size to use.  Also, consider your pot’s drainage to ensure they are adequate to allow the water to flow freely.

HOMENOTE Plant Pots, Set of 15 Plastic Planters with Multiple Drainage Holes and Tray 6 inch

Choose Suitable Potting Soil

Geraniums are not very particular about the soil pH; however, choosing neutral to slightly acidic soil will be ideal. Also, these plants prefer potting soil that is well-draining, moist, and high in organic matter.

To achieve this kind of soil, work a 3-4-inch layer of organic matter such as peat moss or compost into the soil before planting. Besides, ensure the composition has a coarse material like sand or perlite. If this sounds too complicated to do, you can go for a professionally prepared commercial soil mix.

The advantage of using the commercial potting mixes is that they are natural and enhanced with my-tone that improves root development. However, if you choose this option, look out for fungus gnats, especially as you keep the soil moist.

Light And Temperature Exposure

These two conditions are essential aspects of any plant growth.  To grow the best flowering and most vigorous geranium plants, place them under bright light. Some geranium types tolerate partial to full shade, but they won’t blossom as you would expect. If you don’t have adequate light in your area, the best option is to plant geranium.

You will need to grow your geraniums in temperatures ranging from 70 to 75 degrees during the day and 60 to 65 degrees at night.

If you fail to meet the requirements for light and temperature, your geraniums will grow tall and spindly.  To help your geraniums produce bright blooms, allow them at least 6 hours of direct sun. The best location to plant your geraniums in the winter is south and west-facing windowsills.

Light And Temperature Exposure

Caring For Geraniums In Pots -Watering

Overall, potted plants require more frequent watering than typical garden plants.  Therefore, water them as soon as the top inch of soil gets dry to the touch.  Allow the soil to dry completely between watering schedules, then water it thoroughly. To help retain moisture and prevent weed growth, use mulch.

During the winter, the plant growth slows down; reduce the amount of water you give them but don’t let the roots dry out. Avoid overhead watering since it makes the foliage wet encouraging disease development.

Inspect your plant each day to ensure it has enough moisture.  Geraniums respond positively to having the soil dry out between each watering.  Ensure that you water only as needed, checking the soil for dryness to a depth of 4 to 6 inches.

Applying Fertilizers In Geraniums In Pots

Don’t fertilize the geranium plants until they are well established so that you don’t kill them.  When you fertilize, use soluble or slow-release fertilizers, best for indoor plants.

Fertilize every 2 weeks using a water-soluble fertilizer at half strength.  If your plants are growing under low light or indoors, reduce the amount of fertilizer.  Always apply the fertilizer according to the labeled instructions and ensure your soil is always moist before applying.

The best fertilizer to use is a 20-20-20 liquid fertilizer.  Use a rate of 2 tablespoons per gallon of water.  However, read the instructions before use.

Pruning And Deadheading Your Geraniums

Geraniums give some the most beautiful flowers and deadheading the spent flowers only makes them better.  Deadheading keeps them blooming all summer with new flowers each time you remove the spent ones.

Frequently remove the spent flower heads when they begin to wither and deteriorate to prevent seeds from forming, producing more blooms.

Conclusion

Caring for geraniums in pots is significant in getting the best results – a healthy bloom in summer.

Potted geraniums are excellent indoor plants that you can grow indoors all year round.  They will flower continuously with the proper care and growing conditions, brightening your home in a colorful vibe.