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Pelargoniums are commonly known as geraniums but should not be confused with plants of the genus Geranium (cranesbill). For our purpose here and so as not to confuse we shall refer to the generally used name of geranium.
Aylett Nurseries grow 29,000 pots of geraniums each year. These are from cuttings taken from virus free Mother plants, many varieties originating from Holland, Switzerland and Germany. They arrive from these young plant nurseries, starting early February, they are potted by our team into 11cm pots, then grown in our greenhouses into young plants ready for your garden. We also grow seedling varieties, F1 Hybrid and Geraniums trained as columns in large pots growing to 3-4ft high, which are invaluable in summer bedding schemes. All these can be found in our large display greenhouse from mid-April onwards and is certainly a glorious sight not to be missed. The greenhouse is located behind the plant advisory and information building.
While all Geraniums can be grown as indoor pot plants, they are ideally suited for summer bedding, hanging baskets or outdoor containers. When grown indoors they need to be shaded from the hottest sun as this will help to prevent the flowers and foliage from fading. A free draining compost is ideal. Water freely in summer and sparingly in winter. Feed every two weeks in the summer with any good fertilizer.
If growing outside choose a sunny frost free site, with well drained fertile soil. You will reap the benefits from adding a fish, blood & bone fertilizer to the soil as you plant but take care that this is well worked into the soil and does not come into direct contact with the roots. During the flowering season regular dead heading will ensure a long flowering season and although not essential, a high potash feed mid-season will pay dividends.
Geraniums grown outdoors need to be lifted before the first of the sharp frosts, they can then be trimmed down by at least one third, potted up and kept in a frost free situation.
These are upright in growth and have leaves that are marked with a band or zone, hence the name. Within this group there are varieties with different habits;, the stellar varieties have star shaped blooms, with serrated petals and we grow the Firework strain which burst with flowers for a mass of colour.