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Beginner Gardening Questions: geraniums..... annual or perennial?

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OutlawHeart81

OutlawHeart81
Syracuse, NY
(Zone 5a)

June 2, 2011
5:05 PM

Post #8604784

I'm confused about what geraniums are perennials. And which are annuals. Can someone explain for me the difference?

flowAjen

flowAjen
central, NJ
(Zone 6b)

June 3, 2011
6:17 AM

Post #8605837

The geraniums you see in all the garden centers,the scented ones,(pelargoniums or zonal geraniums) the ones that die in the winter are annuals
Hardy perennials geraniums are the true geraniums called cranesbill that return every year
Both have totally different look

this is a cranesbill
http://www.gardencrossings.com/plantname/Geranium-Rozanne
this is an annual
http://www.gardencrossings.com/plantname/Pelargonium-Americana-Cherry-Rose

OutlawHeart81

OutlawHeart81
Syracuse, NY
(Zone 5a)

June 3, 2011
7:45 AM

Post #8606005

OK; the tag. Said tender perennial. Can I over winter them indoors?
ecrane3
Dublin, CA
(Zone 9a)

June 3, 2011
7:47 AM

Post #8606007

Yes you can. Technically speaking they're all perennials, but the Pelargoniums that flowAjen mentioned won't be hardy in your zone, so if you leave them outdoors all year they'll behave like annuals and die. But if you have a way to keep them warm over the winter, then you can keep them from year to year.

flowAjen

flowAjen
central, NJ
(Zone 6b)

June 3, 2011
11:52 AM

Post #8606315

And prune them pretty hard before bringing them in

OutlawHeart81

OutlawHeart81
Syracuse, NY
(Zone 5a)

June 3, 2011
6:09 PM

Post #8607000

OK. I was just curious. I Just. Got a green house which I think willl be too cold here but I will be using it for my potted hydrangea. Among other things. I may try wintering them in the basement provided they aren't too buggy. Everywhere I look there's those Tully polley potato bugs.
WeeNel
Ayrshire Scotland
United Kingdom

June 7, 2011
4:54 PM

Post #8616253

I live in UK in a zone 5, I also use a greenhouse and can save my tender geraniums, fuchsias and lots of other tender plants over winter each year, the way I do it is to lift the plants around October, just before the night frost / cold starts, label the plants as you pot them up, cut back all top heavy growth and remove the flowers, once potted up into good potting compost, keep the plants on the dry side, you only want to keep the plants alive, not making new growth and flowers as they were while out in the summer sun.
if the plants get too wet, you can loose them to mold etc, if you see this start, just remove the leaves thats are moldy, keep the greenhouse well vented (airer) in daytime but close in evenings, in really cold or frost, just allow some air in via vents for about an hour, in some real cold evenings, I lite a small paraffin heater and turn it off first thing in morning, these heaters are not expensive and a very cost effective to run.
You will get used to what you can save over winter and once you get the confidence you will really enjoy extending your gardening skills to all year round, greenhouses are a great place to escape to in the colder days when you cant go into the garden, there is always something you can do like seeds, taking cuttings or just having a coffee in gentle peaceful surroundings ha, ha, ha, they become like your extended garden.
Good luck. WeeNel.

OutlawHeart81

OutlawHeart81
Syracuse, NY
(Zone 5a)

June 7, 2011
7:31 PM

Post #8616595

Um... you'll have to forgive me weenel; but what temps do you get too? I feel I should know this being off Irish and English descent... my geography is horrific...here in US zone 5 we get snow and loads of it, not just frost. :( would be nice though. I think my house is a little small for a heater, but I may try to rig something up. I wish it was closer to my hubby's garage which will be heated...hmmm... maybe I'll be moving it. :)
pupil
Newmarket Ontario
Canada

June 16, 2011
1:07 PM

Post #8634416

Hi.
If, like me, you have a south facing window just pot them up and grow them on during the winter. Prune them back hard first and put the prunings in a pot with good potting soil.
I find these easily produce roots. So more plants next year!

I keep mine slightly on the dry side and though I only get one or two flowers from them it's better than nothing and they are ready to go once the weather is favourable.

Good luck to anyone who tries this.
cathy4
St. Louis County, MO
(Zone 5a)

June 17, 2011
8:55 AM

Post #8636261

OUtlaw, I am zone 5 with a small greenhouse 8x8 foot. I have a heater that only turns on when the temps inside get below 50. I can keep geraniums easily left in the pot, I cut them back when I move them in, give just enough water to survive the winter, and usually get flowers again in March as the sun comes out again.

OutlawHeart81

OutlawHeart81
Syracuse, NY
(Zone 5a)

June 18, 2011
7:53 PM

Post #8639280

I don't have a heater in mine, but I'm thinking about moving the greenhouse closer to the shed which has power and will have a woodstove. Maybe they'll stay warmer
smileymom343
Kenmore, NY
(Zone 6a)

June 19, 2011
4:45 AM

Post #8639681

I bring mine in for the winter also. We have an unheated south-facing sunroom, they love it in there.

I cut them back when I bring them in and they grow during the winter. I cut them back when I take them back outside in spring and they grow again. I have a couple that are going on 4 or 5 years.

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