How to Overwinter Ivy Geraniums
Geraniums are beloved garden and potted flowers. They come from a large family of flowering plants referred to as geraniums and pelargoniums, with flower colors from white, through pinks and corals to red. They are distinctive plants with rounded leaves, and some varieties, like ivy geraniums, have a trailing habit that makes them ideal for hanging baskets and window boxes. There are several ways to overwinter them in northern climates if brought indoors before the first killing frost.
- Moderately Easy
Things You’ll Need
- Healthy ivy geranium plants
- Indoor area maintained above freezing
- Small pots and light potting mix
- Take cuttings from stems with leaves before the first killing frost. Clip about 1 1/2 inches off the ends of healthy trailing sections with clean, sterilized scissors or clippers.
- Put clipped plant material into clean, clear water, cut part in water, until ready to plant in soil.
- Fill pots with light, loose potting soil mix and water the soil so it’s thoroughly moistened. Plant cuttings in pots.
- Keep potted cuttings in a well-lighted area, under plant lights if available. Light is important for the successful growth of geranium cuttings into healthy plants. Water weekly, but don’t let pots get waterlogged. With regular moisture and 8 to 10 hours of daily bright light, the cuttings will grow well all winter and be ready for the garden or deck by spring.
Bring Plants Inside
- If there is sufficient space and light, bring potted plants inside before the first killing frost.
- Trim off dried leaves and flower heads, and trim back leggy growth. Check for insects and treat any infestations with a warm soapy water wash.
- Keep plants well-lighted and water once a week, being careful not to over-water or let them dry out completely.
Dig up Garden Geraniums
- Dig up geraniums from the garden before the first killing frost.
- Carefully shake the dirt from the roots and tie twine or cotton string lightly around the base of the plant, leaving a 12-inch-length loose. Use this length of string to hang the plant, either on a clothes hanger or from a rack such as a garment rack.
- Hang the plants upside down in an area where 80 percent humidity and cool but above-freezing temperatures can be maintained throughout the winter.