Since the 'Geraniaceae and Friends' forum has been reintroduced (Yea!!), some DGers might find this very nice website on the genus geranium which has been created by Andrew Norton who holds a National Collection geraniums in England.
Yes, I was sorry to hear Mark 'bowed out' of DG. He is/was an avid hardy geranium collector and had some wonderful photo catalogs of the various plants. I believe he was working on a book about hardy geranium, too.
Don't exactly know what happened to him either. Or 'Psilo', another very knowledgeable DGer who loved h.g.s.
I put a thread out on the European forum that this forum was back and on the Annuals forum too. I don't understand why more people aren't posting. All of Mark's weblinks are still intact, but I don't see him posting anywhere. Seems like something happened in 2004 that everyone just stopped posting. What a loss of knowledge. I went back and started reading this forum from the beginning and have throughly enjoyed seeing all the lovely plants.
And Psilo was so knowledgeable about h. geraniums, always active on the forum, but I believe she has turned her attentions elsewhere.
I love 'jolly bee'. One of my favorites along with 'Orion'.
Last year I had perhaps 20 or 30 kinds of hardy geraniums, but, apparently they weren't so hardy here--now I am reduced to about 10 kinds. I would like to make more Orions, but I'm not quite sure of the best way.
Dancey, hardy geraniums can overwinter in your garden bed. The Pelargoniums or pot geraniums need winter protection, but can easily be stored indoors either in their pots or bare root. The scented ones are not hardy.
I went out this evening to try to identify my HGs but several look very much alike to me.
I was somewhat heartened to know that the people at the U. Georgia HG trial gardens can't tell them apart without labels too.
Three in our garden, 'Brookside', 'Rozanne', and 'Jolly Bee', are difficult for me to tell apart except for bloom times but I love to plant them around the daylilies and hostas, too. They sort of twine around and serve as a contrast ground cover.
beaker--yes, I have read that they are from the same crosses, too. That rumor may have something to do with Alan Bloom trademarking 'Rozanne' with a plant patent restricting propagation so those not willing to pay the price to him have developed the "Jolly Bee" using the same parents...just a thought. At any rate they are very similar if not the same.
I looked at the University of Georgia trial results and they give the two cultivars slightly different bloom time and scores.
I'm interested in the U. of GA results because their climate is hot and humid like ours and much of what is written about HG culture comes from England and I'm finding doesn't apply here in Cincinnati.
BTW For anyone interested in write-ups on the various hardy geraniums, Paghat gives a lot of background and detail on the various cutivars and she gardens in the PNW.
Hi folks, I'm from the european gang, and am glad this forums back.
As you say it's ashame about Mark and Psilo not being here any more, they wer agreat help in identifying some of my geraniums.
I have a habit of buying packets of mixed seeds, then have the delight of trying to see whats what when they grow.I have bought a couple of the geranium books to help, but found them a bit complicated, nothing like a bit of hands on experience.My biggest problem is that I have an absolutely rubbish short-term memory, I keep meaning to labels the plants as soon someone identifies them for me, but then I forget to do that to...LOL
I bought a Jolly Bee last spring, and the woman at the nursey told me that it was the better plant of the two, apart from being way cheaper.
Another one I do well with is G madarense, it seeds itself all over in my large brown envelopes over the seed heads out there hoping that I'll get some that way.
OK, now I'm showing my ignorance, I know Jolly Bee is a hardy, but which one is the Euphorbia? To tell the truth, I had never heard of Euphorbia before I found this forum. Can someone tell me a little about its culture? Is this typically a garden or pot plant? If it's a garden plant like the hardy geraniums, it probably is too tender for my zone.
Hi beaker, the euphorbias do well in my garden , another plant that seeds itself around. That one is Euphorbia characias,maybe be wulfenii (one has dark eyes, one light) again grown from a pack of mixed Euphorbias, so's that half of them I can't identify...LOL.One that I could and absolutely adore is E mellifera, the honey spurge, the smell in the spring is literally like honey on the breeze, this is a slightly more tender one, but as I'm on the south coast ,so far it's done well here.
Tabasco, there are quite a few dark-leaved forms here, but from what I've seen of them, they don't seem to grow as well as the green -leaved ones, they're always straggly, and another one that I bought went staright down to mildew, think I've lost it permenantly...
Geranium seeds seem to germinate really well, I've never had a problem with mine.A lot of my perrenials I'll sow now until about end of September, and just leave them in the cold frame.If they germinate quickly and grow away fast,I'll pot them on this side of winter, if not i just leave the trays till spring, and pot them on then.It means that a lot of them will be big enough to flower next year then.
Thanks for those details on germinating HGs, sueone.
I was looking up seeds on the internet--looks like Chiltern's has a wide variety, but I am not sure they ship stateside anymore. Maybe I'll try to order a few and see what they say!
Specialty Perennials has a nice but limited seed collection here too.
I would like to propagate "Orion" but I suppose I will have to do that by dividing the one plant I have. Or maybe root cuttings. And also "Jolly Bee".
I bought seed from Thompson&Morgan last year called 'Purple Haze' . I got a few dark leaved plants as well as green leaved ones from it (you can just throw the green leaved ones out if don't want them). They haven't flowered yet but look good. T&M ships worldwide - and their shipping fees are low!
Chilterns shipped to the US as of last spring. As for Purple Haze, mine has a lovely blue flower on it. I can't recall if I got the seed from T&M or in trade, but not all of my seeds produced the dark foliage plants, but a fair amount.
I realize this is a rather old thread but thought this was the best place to post a link to information about growing hardy geraniums that I just came across on the internet. The article is called "Growing Hardy Geraniums" by Dr. Michael Hickman from the Devonian Botanic Garden with some interesting explanations for naming geraniums (i.e., 'bloody cranesbill'). The link is http://www.devonian.ualberta.ca/getgro33.html The article contains some very nice photos.
I went out today and added more Rozanne's to our collection of ground covers we just planted. We also have himalayense for ground covers (not yet planted - still debating on whether or not we will use them). I've attached a photo of a variety we've had around the mailboxes for years (they were there when we moved in 8 years ago). When they bloomed, they were very pretty. But they were hard to maintain and usually overgrown. We recently removed those and are putting in the others in hopes they will be easier to control. However, we still have a batch of the "mailbox" variety elsewhere in the yard. For now.
This is the time of year when our local hardy geranium is in bloom... geranium erianthum. It is a familiar sight along roadsides or anywhere that it can find some sun. It self seeds nicely and adapts well to cultivation.
Hi. I have what I think are "Johnson's Blue" geraniums; spreading themselves all over the garden this year now that we are not having a severe drought for a change. I also have some hot pink or magenta ones that bloom in the spring. When these cranesbill get seedy, as they are now, how far can I cut them back without hurting them? I have never been sure on this.
There are lots of lovely blue geranium besides the Johnson's Blue. I believe mine are a true Johnson's Blue, because they never set seed. Two plants were given to me by a friend when she divided her plant. It seems to be a much shorter and more rambling plant than the G. pratense I have, and it has really intense blue flowers. Some of my blue G. pratense can be as tall as 36-40", and some of them have a very blue bloom, as well. Here is a photo of my Johnson's Blue in early July. Your pink is probably G. sanguineum, and I don't know if the two could cross pollinate, or if the J. Blue can do so.
Yeah, those are a brighter blue. The original plant, sold to me years ago was supposedly Johnson's Blue. But, who knows what it really is. We do have wild cranesbill here but it seems more lavender or white. Right now mine is out of bloom and cut back. Thanks for the advice.
Yes, it seems there are hardy geraniums for every climate. Our wild cranesbill is a soft lavender blue, but varies a bit. I've found all the G. pratense do well here, but some of the others seem reliable, as well. I've traded and purchased several different species and started them from seed.