DENVER — If you brought your geranium plants inside last fall, you can propagate them and make new, free plants.
You'll need small pots, potting soil and a rooting powder (available at garden centers or online).
Your geraniums have likely gotten a bit lanky over the winter. Cutting them back will reinvigorate them and provide cuttings for you to root.
Take cuttings four to six inches long. Strip off the lower leaves. New roots will form at the points where the leaves were attached. Dust the lower stem with a brush dipped in rooting powder. Insert the cuttings into holes you made in advance in pre-moistened soil. Firm the soil around the stems. Place in a sunny window.
That's it. It's amazingly simple. New roots will form in a couple of weeks. In a few more weeks, the roots will fill the small pot. At that point, transplant them into larger pots. They will be ready to plant outside in the latter part of May.
The wonderful part is that you can share cuttings with your friends. That's how geraniums have been passed along from generation to generation for hundreds of years.
Because geraniums aren't bothered much by Japanese beetles, I'm planting more and more of them. I especially like the fancy-leaf types that are relics from the Victorian era. Fancy-leaf types have variegated leaves in a variety of patterns and colors. The leaves are as showy as the flowers. They are worth seeking out for your garden and, perhaps, to pass along to a new generation of gardeners.
More Proctor's Garden:
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