Each spring, many homeowners decorate their porches and flower beds with colorful geraniums. These flowers are an investment and it’s disappointing to have to send them to the compost pile each fall. Fortunately, you don’t have to. You can overwinter your geraniums and bring them back each spring fully restored — giving you a head start on your spring planting and stretching your flower budget.
- Moderately Easy
- Cut geraniums back to their original size. Inspect them for signs of bugs or disease.
- Dig up healthy geraniums from the garden before the first frost. Replant them in containers.
- Bring the potted plants indoors and place them in a sunny and bright location. If you do not have a window they can sit near, provide them with artificial light for at least a few hours each day. Place the light about a foot away from the plant.
- Water your geraniums occasionally, but not too much. Too much water will cause root rot. Geraniums are much more likely to thrive in dry conditions than wet ones.
- Store your geraniums in a dormant state by digging up the whole plant and shaking the soil gently from the roots.
- Place the plants in open paper bags or hang them upside down in a cool area, such as an attic or garage. Store them where the temperature is 45 and 50 degrees.
- Take the plants out of the bags or down from the rafters two or three times during the winter. Soak the roots in water for a couple of hours.
- Inspect the stems when you soak the roots. The leaves will die and fall off, but the stems should stay firm and solid.
- Repot healthy geraniums in late March or early April. Water the plants thoroughly and place them in a sunny window to encourage new growth. Replant your geraniums outside or set your containers outside once the danger of frost has passed.