Geraniums have long been a popular plant for both outdoor and indoor use. The common geranium can be grown in beds or containers and will do well in either. The ivy leafed geranium is a natural for hanging planters. The Regal or Martha Washington geranium does not do well outside and should be indoors.
Growing Geraniums In Beds
To plant geraniums outdoors, you must wait until all threat of frost has passed. Pick a spot that is sheltered from strong winds and gets at least 6 hours of sun a day. The soil should be well drained and mildly acidic (pH of 6.5 is ideal). Geraniums need fertilization for best growth and they thrive in beds that have a good supply of nitrogen. Before planting, apply a 5-10-5 fertilizer to soil. After planting, you should fertilize every month with a 10-10-10 fertilizer. Mulch area and water at least once a week.
Growing In Planters Outdoors
Geraniums can be grown in planters on porch, patio or garden. The ivy type geraniums are great for hanging baskets and window boxes. Make sure you use a container that is big enough for plant or it will wilt (you may need to replant to prevent wilting as plant grows). Use a soil that has enough aeration – either a commercial made mix or garden soil mixed with peat moss or perlite. Make sure you water it frequently but do not let it sit in water.
Growing Indoors The Martha Washington geraniums are not suited for outdoor growing but can be beautiful indoor plants. Put our plant in a sunny window for best flowering. Plant in a well drained soil and use a fertilizer formulated for indoor plants. Fertilize monthly when plant is flowering but cut back to every two months in fall and winter. Your geranium will do best if day time temps are around 65 degrees with night temperature around 55.