Geraniums

Moutaineer
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Geraniums

Postby Moutaineer » Thu Jul 12, 2018 10:40 pm

As I mentioned on the other gardening post, growing stuff can be a challenge around here...

I have two large planters either side of my front door. Both of them are filled with red geraniums. One pot is covered in blooms and has lots more buds on the way. The other one is just all leaves--profuse quantities of new and healthy looking leaves, but nary a bud in sight.


I tried switching their positions to see if it was a light-related thing, but there has been no change. They are planted in the same soil which is pretty rich old muck heap dirt.


I think leafy one is a different variety to flowery one, and it had flowers on it when I planted it, about 4 weeks ago.


I've watered them, fed them, flattered, cajoled and threatened them, but no flowers.


Do I need to give it a majot haircut? Be more patient, what?

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Chisamba
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Re: Geraniums

Postby Chisamba » Fri Jul 13, 2018 12:59 am

I know you said you switched, but lots of leaf and no blooms in geraniums usually means not enough direct sun.

Other than that I'm not too much help

Moutaineer
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Re: Geraniums

Postby Moutaineer » Fri Jul 13, 2018 4:23 am

I'll try moving them to the front of the porch during the day and seeing if that works. I have remember to move them back at night or they will just get eaten by some passing creature.

WheresMyWhite
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Re: Geraniums

Postby WheresMyWhite » Fri Jul 13, 2018 3:16 pm

Fertilizer?

It is often recommended to fertilize plants in containers because the water as it runs through the contain tends to wash the micronutrients out with it.

Same variety of geraniums?

texsuze
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Re: Geraniums

Postby texsuze » Fri Jul 13, 2018 4:33 pm

Try going native. Check with your local native plant society or google 'native blooming perennials' for your part of the state to find a plant that is already adapted to your climate, altitude, amount of sun, etc. Then track down a nursery who carries native perennial plants. No fertilizer, no guesswork, less water, no replacing every season/year, much less hassle :)

Moutaineer
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Re: Geraniums

Postby Moutaineer » Fri Jul 13, 2018 6:29 pm

I should explain that we live in a very natural, wild environment at 7000ft. We keep a patch of mown defensible space (note, I do not describe it as "lawn" or even "grass," :)) around the house so if our world goes up in flames, we stand half a chance of surviving, but other than that, we are out in the sage and oakbrush. Our wild blooming perennials were pretty in the spring but are burned off by now, except for the thistles.

Like everyone else does who moves here from civilization, when I first came here, I did all the research, spent a bloody fortune, and planted a bunch of those native blooming perennials. The deer/moose/elk/racoons/etc., were incredibly grateful to me for the ones I planted in the ground. The ones I planted in tubs died tragic frozen little deaths over the winter.

So no, after 20 years, I've learned that I can keep the odd hanging basket and a few tubs of colorful annuals going for the summer, out of reach of the wildlife, and that's about it. This year, my hanging baskets of scarlet geraniums, which look so pretty against the logs and green paint of my cabin, got blown down and smashed by the terrible winds we have been having, so I repotted their contents into my tubs.

I love it up here. There aren't many places left in the world where you can sit on your porch eating dinner surrounded by wildlife that potter about oblivious to you and don't feel threatened by humans, but it is very hard on the green thumb!

texsuze
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Re: Geraniums

Postby texsuze » Fri Jul 13, 2018 7:33 pm

Agree with living amongst wildlife. Deer are the decimators around here, so we've salvaged the +/- 2 acre patch around the house by enclosing it with 6' tall mesh fence. There are few natives down here that actually survive a 'taste test' by deer after deer, so I get where you are coming from.

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Chisamba
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Re: Geraniums

Postby Chisamba » Fri Jul 13, 2018 11:54 pm

Geraniums are usually deer resistant. It's the only thing our deer ignore

Tarlo Farm
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Re: Geraniums

Postby Tarlo Farm » Sat Jul 14, 2018 3:14 pm

Until they don't... :evil: I've kept geraniums for years and in fact have made at least two dozen cuttings off one especially prolific plant with extraordinary genetics. As someone said, FULL sun is essential, and it's ok to let the soil dry out periodically.
What caught my attention is these are new plants...? From a greenhouse? Just be patient. Greenhouse plants are cajoled and forced to full bloom on all stems for best sales. Regular growing geraniums only bloom on about 50% of the plant at any given time and they cycle naturally once they're on a more normal schedule. The plant may be resetting its clock.
If they prove prolific, in the fall, trim them back quite a bit and keep them in a sunny window with very little water. In the Spring, feed, water, put outside as soon as frosts are over.

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Re: Geraniums

Postby WheresMyWhite » Sun Jul 15, 2018 3:39 pm

texsuze wrote:Try going native. Check with your local native plant society or google 'native blooming perennials' for your part of the state to find a plant that is already adapted to your climate, altitude, amount of sun, etc. Then track down a nursery who carries native perennial plants. No fertilizer, no guesswork, less water, no replacing every season/year, much less hassle :)


I would agree with going native but with a few additional comments :)

If you plant native in the ground, then may not need to fertilize. If you plant in a container (any plant), you should fertilize as the micronutrients get washed out of the soil and out the bottom of the container when you water (containers should always have holes in the bottom and should always be watered until the water runs out the bottom :) ).

True on the amount of sun but every landscape has microclimates. A plant that does well in full sun may do well in full sun unless it's against a wall/structure with reflected heat. Full sun may actually not mean "full on beating down" all day sun from sunrise to sunset. You also don't know where a potted plant sold in a nursery was grown... really local or semi-local/greenhouse where that semi-local may have a slightly different climate than where you live.

Annuals, veggies I'll get at a big box store :) Perennials, trees, shrubs I'll try to get from a local nursery, not a chain. Usually, no guarantees, the staff at a local nursery is often more knowledgeable and can help you select a plant or help troubleshoot a problem.

Shameless plug... see if you county has a Master Gardener program... many offer a plant help desk or Q&As or appear at home shows. Knowledgeable, free help :) (Photos, pieces of plants are a plus :D ).


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