Geranium is one of the most common indoor plants in our country. The geranium family also includes pelargonium grandiflora, which is also often called royal and royal for its large luxurious flowers.
- Botanical features of pelargonium grandiflora
- Maintenance and care
- Reproduction and transplantation
Botanical features of pelargonium grandiflora
Pelargonium grandiflora differs from ordinary geranium in the structure of the flower, its upper three petals are very large, and a pair of lower ones are smaller, and the petals go over each other. The flowers of this plant are collected in dense spectacular umbrellas. In geraniums, the flowers have five identical petals, and the inflorescences form scutes. In addition, the flowers of pelargonium are simply huge in comparison with the flowers of geranium, there are varieties with double inflorescences of various colors, from snow-white and light pink to burgundy and purple. Petals can be corrugated or wavy, with a dark speck or strip along the veins. With proper care and maintenance, flowers can reach a diameter of up to 15 cm.
The shoots of pelargonium grandiflora, like other species of geranium, reach a height of up to half a meter, and the light green leaves are jagged along the edges, large and rough to the touch. This plant does not have a characteristic smell of geranium. Unfortunately, royal pelargonium is distinguished not only by its beauty, but also by its capriciousness. It is not so easy to make it bloom, and the flowering, unlike geranium, will not be too long, only a few months, nothing can be done about it.
Maintenance and care
The royal plant requires good lighting, but needs protection from direct sun. It is best to keep it under artificial lighting, but it can also be on the window, with the exception of the one facing the north side. If the pelargonium does not have enough light, it may not bloom or its flowers will be small. When kept on a window in the hot season, it needs shading, otherwise burns may appear on the leaves. In summer, it is better not to take the plant out into the open air, it is afraid of rain and winds. In summer, an ideal place of detention is a glazed veranda or loggia. In winter, pelargonium needs a cool temperature in the region of +15 degrees, otherwise all its strength will be spent on survival in hot conditions, and they will not be left for flowering. In addition, if the temperature conditions are not observed, the plants are often attacked by pests, for example, whitefly, aphids.
Pelargonium grandiflora loves abundant watering, but does not tolerate waterlogging, so it needs good drainage. It is better to take soft, settled water for irrigation, and moisten the substrate only after its top layer dries. With strong waterlogging or drying out of the earth, the beauty instantly drops its color. You can spray the plant only when it is not blooming; ugly spots appear on the flowers from the water. For abundant flowering and the formation of new shoots, pelargonium is regularly pinched. In the spring-summer period, it needs to be fed with a mineral fertilizer with a high potassium content, during the flowering period - with any fertilizer for flowering indoor plants. To maintain an aesthetic appearance during the flowering period, wilted flowers should be pinched off.
Reproduction and transplantation
Pelargonium grandiflora reproduces quite simply by the vegetative method. To do this, in spring or summer, the tops of the shoots with several internodes are cut off, the cut site is sprinkled with activated carbon and slightly dried for a couple of hours. For rooting, you need to make a substrate from a mixture of peat and sand. In water, shoots take root very rarely, more often they just start to rot. It is better to cover the stalk planted in peat and sand with a plastic bag to create a greenhouse effect. The substrate should be kept moist. After three weeks, roots will appear, then the cutting can be transplanted to a permanent place in a mixture of leafy and turfy soil with the addition of sand.
Pelargonium grandiflora can respond to transplantation by reducing flowering, so it is transplanted no more than once every two or even three years, in the spring. The pot is selected so that the roots are slightly cramped, the plant does not like spacious containers. When transplanting, remove weak and elongated shoots.
Unfortunately, pelargonium grandiflora is susceptible to numerous diseases, most often due to improper content. So, with excessive moisture and unsterilized soil, a plant may develop a black leg or late blight. There is also a gray rot of pelargonium, which is inherent only in these plants and is not transmitted to other types of green pets. When the first signs of disease appear, such as spots and deformations on the stems and leaves, the plant should be treated with a systemic fungicide.