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How to Clip Geraniums


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Geraniums are common flowering plants grown in the home garden or as potted plants. They require little care and grow fairly well without pruning, though they do benefit from deadheading. But if you plan to over-winter your garden geraniums to plant again next year, pruning is necessary. Also, potted indoor geraniums can be trained to grow in specific shapes, if desired. Try clipping or pruning your geraniums this year and notice the difference it can make.

Difficulty:
Moderate

Instructions

Things You’ll Need
  • Hand clippers
    1. Prune garden geraniums down to about 3 to 4 inches tall and then water them. Do this in the fall before their winter dormancy. Geraniums do not tolerate frost, so in most climates, garden geraniums must be removed from the ground and stored indoors for the winter.
    2. Prune the geraniums again in the early spring to remove any dead or shriveled branches. If you stored your geraniums bare-rooted during the winter, pot them first before pruning. Replant geraniums outdoors after the last frost in the spring.
    3. Clip off spent geranium flowers and dry foliage during the growing season. This will help prevent Botrytis fungus, a common problem with geraniums. It also encourages geraniums to produce more blooms.
    4. Prune all the side shoots during active growth to grow geraniums that look like trees. When they reach the desired height, clip off the top growing points and let the top side shoots begin to grow. Staking the main stalks will most likely be necessary. Unless you live in a year-round warm climate, only indoor geraniums can be trained to grow this shape.
    5. Clip off the top growing points of your indoor geraniums to encourage a fuller, bushlike plant, if desired. When you cut off a top growing point, the branch will grow outward and fuller, rather than tall and lanky. Outdoors, geraniums typically do not have enough time to be trained in this way.

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