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Pelargoniums - commonly referred to colloquially as "geraniums" - come in many different varieties and colors. Up until a few years ago, red, pink and white geraniums were the most common, but now there are also orange, violet and two-tone varieties on the market. All of these wonderful plants can be propagated vegetatively - i.e. varietal - by cuttings without much effort.

Geraniums are easy to propagate from cuttings

Choice of cuttings and timing

If you have no way of overwintering fully grown geraniums in a species-appropriate manner or simply want to increase your stock, propagating cuttings is the right strategy. Only vigorous and healthy plants with profuse flowering are suitable as mother plants, as the cuttings are in fact their clones and will share the same growth and flowering characteristics. The best time to cut the cuttings is the late summer month of August, but you can also start in early to mid-September.

Cut and plant geranium cuttings

This first step is particularly easy:

  • Select a few strong side shoots, two to four inches long.
  • These should have neither flowers nor buds,
  • if necessary, carefully remove them.
  • Cut or break off the cuttings just below the leaf node.
  • Remove all but the top two leaves.
  • Now plant the cuttings in prepared plant pots with potting soil.
  • The cuttings should be planted about one, maximum two centimeters deep.
  • Keep the substrate slightly moist but not wet.
  • Place the cuttings in a light and sheltered location,
  • but avoid direct sun.

Do not use soft shoots!

Especially with geraniums, you should not use any green and still soft shoots for the propagation of cuttings, only half-ripe ones should be used. You can recognize these by the fact that they have already turned brown, but are still flexible. Soft geranium shoots tend to rot and are therefore unsuitable for propagation.

How to properly care for your geranium cuttings

The next step is to properly care for the geranium cuttings so that they grow into healthy and strong plants.

  • The cuttings will root within four to six weeks.
  • You can tell by the fact that the young plants are upright and form new shoots and leaves.
  • Avoid direct sunlight
  • and place the freshly rooted geraniums in a cool place at around 10 to 15 °C.
  • Water moderately, but keep the substrate evenly moist.
  • Avoid wet and high humidity.
  • Do not place the young plants directly over a heater.
  • Fertilization is initially not necessary.
  • In February, repot the young geraniums into a larger container with nutrient-rich, pre-fertilized soil.

Overwinter geranium cuttings

In contrast to the older specimens, geranium cuttings should hibernate in a light but cool place at 10 to 15 °C. The young plants should be watered regularly, but fertilization is not necessary. From February, as soon as the geraniums have been repotted, you should slowly wake them up from hibernation. Gradually increase the temperature, bearing in mind that the warmer it is, the brighter the plants need to be. Begin fertilizing carefully about six to eight weeks after repotting.

tips

Before you put the young geraniums outside from mid to late May, slowly get them used to the changed weather and environment by initially only putting them outside for a few hours and gradually increasing these times.

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