Over 250 species of geraniums, Pelargonium spp., exist, plus even more hybrid cultivars. In northern areas, geraniums are often grown as annuals. Plant them in full sun, in well drained soil. They withstand light frosts and are drought tolerant after the plants are established. Wet, damp soils and overwatering potted geraniums result in fewer flowers. They are easier and quicker to grow from cuttings, but growing geraniums from seed is a good way to obtain new colors and refresh your stock.
- Moderately Easy
Things You’ll Need
- Starter containers or pots
- Potting soil
- Plant mister
- Fluorescent lights
- Fill starter containers with potting soil, water until excess water drips out of the bottom of the pot, making sure the soil is thoroughly soaked.
- Sow geranium seeds, three per container, 1/8 inch deep, three months before the last frost date. Soak the seeds with water from the plant mister. Re-soak them after they dry out.
- Keep the pots warm, 75 degrees Fahrenheit, until the geranium seeds germinate in about a week.
- Hang the fluorescent lights on a pulley so they can be raised and lowered above the seedlings. Plug the lights into a timer, set for 12 hours of darkness and 12 hours of light. Geraniums need a rest every day.
- Move the geranium seedlings beneath the fluorescent lights. Pull out all but the strongest seedling. Lower the lights directly above, but not touching, the leaves of the geraniums. This keeps the plants healthy and stops them from growing spindly. Raise the lights as the geraniums grow.
- Continue to water the geranium seedlings after the soil dries out.
- Plant the seedlings outdoors, 1 foot apart, after the last frost or move them into bigger pots for growing on your deck.