Fragrant geraniums

The fragrant geraniums, the species called Pelargonium

The plant species commonly known by the name of odorous geraniums are included in the large genus known in botany with the name of Pelargonium and belong to the Geraniaceae family. These plants originate from the African continent and are characterized by their aromatic, evergreen foliage with intense and fragrant fragrances. The blooms are produced in abundance from the beginning of spring and last throughout the summer season, they can be white or pink. The flowers, according to the different species, emit a fragrance that recalls the aroma of apple and rose. The stem tends to become semi-woody with the passage of time and the posture is bushy. Generally, the foliage is slightly tomentose,

Cultivation techniques of odorous geranium plants

The fragrant geraniums are plants suitable for the Mediterranean climate and above all they grow luxuriantly in areas with temperate winter seasons. In fact, these plants fear temperatures below five degrees and cold currents coming from the north. In the northern regions they are grown in sheltered environments such as verandas and greenhouses. They grow in well-drained soils, the loam is composed of portions of clayey earth and peat. They adapt and bloom abundantly in both sunny and partial shade areas. Irrigation is regular and frequent in spring and throughout the summer season, avoiding dangerous water stagnations that damage the root system. With the vegetative restart, a liquid organic fertilizer is periodically administered to supply the fragrant geraniums with all the necessary nutritional elements.

The most used technique to obtain new fragrant geranium plants is cutting. The buds are selected and cut at the end of the summer, the branches should preferably be free of buds and flowers. The excess leaves are eliminated, the wounds must be treated with rooting and fungicidal powder, both to speed up the rooting process and to eliminate possible fungal attacks. Subsequently, the cuttings are placed in individual containers, filled with garden soil mixed with peat and coarse sand. The ideal temperature to favor the rooting is around fifteen, eighteen degrees. The pots are placed in dark areas and within a couple of months, the new leaf buds appear, confirming the growth and development of the new root system.

The different species called odorous geraniums

There are four species included in the genus Pelargonium known more commonly with the name of odorous geraniums. One of these is the so-called Pelargonium odoratissimum also known by the name of Egyptian mallow, it is recognizable by the delicate apple aroma that the flowers give off. The species of plants called Pelargonium radula and Pelargonium graveolens are characterized by an intense fragrance, with delicate and fresh fragrances that recall the smell of roses, essential oils are extracted and produced from both varieties. The intense, acrid and limonaceous aroma distinguishes the specimens of Pelargonium radens with light green foliage. All the species commonly known as odorous geraniums are suitable for Mediterranean temperate climates and have evergreen tomentose leaves.

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