Tuesday, March 22, 2011

2011 Pelargonium Seeds Exchange Project

We went at the beginning of this month, as usual, to the monthly meeting of the Canadian Geranium & Pelargonium Society, held at VanDusen Botanical Garden, Vancouver. This month the "2011 Pelargonium Seeds Exchange Project" was started, and we discussed various methods to grow pelargoniums from seeds and their degrees of success. For this project we donated seeds gathered last Autumn from our Pelargonium Grossularioides / Coconut scented plants .

The 2011's challenge of this project to the club members will be to grow some special pelargoniums from seeds received from the Geraniaceae Group in UK. The Project phases include planting them using sprouting method (eventually scarifying them), note their evolutions and share the results. The seeds should be planted in a well-drained soil and in good light, avoid over-watering and over-feeding and maintaining best conditions for growing.  

We received one seed of  Pelargonium Alternans: a perfect candidate to become a bonsai because it is a low, stout-stemmed little bush. (it perhaps was given to us after the "Pelargoniums Bonsai" presentation we did in February meeting). It is a plant from seasonally dry climate which will make white-pink flowers with 5 red anthers.

Pelargonium Alternans description
Pelargonium Alternans description

We received also:
- one seed of Pelargonium Lobatum - a variety of pelargonium with tall flowering stems (70 cm high?) and almost black flowers, fragrant in night ;-) with petals edged with yellowish green.
Pelargonium Lobatum flowers
Pelargonium Lobatum flowers

- one seed of Pelargonium Barklyi - a tuberous plant with dark green, deeply veined leaves, purple on the reverse which will bloom with quite large, pale yellow flowers.

 Pelargonium Barklyl description

- one seed of Pelargonium Bowkeri - a summer-growing pelargonium with strange fringed flowers which should be keep dry over winter in its dormancy period.

 Pelargonium Bowkeri description

Other members received also seeds of:
- pelargonium Appendiculatum - hairy leaves finely cut from an underground tuber and pale yellow flowers;
- pelargonium Auritum - winter-growing with dark maroon flowers;
- pelargonium Articulatum - winter-growing, parent of Cliff Blackman's Zonartic Hibrid, with large yellow flowers;
- pelargonium Echinatum "Miss Stapleton" , known also as "Sweetheart Geranium" - winter-growing with flowers white-pink with a deep red spot - often heart shaped.
- pelargonium Endlichenarium - originated to Turkey, summer-growing with bright pink two-petalled flowers. It can be grown outside in Vancouver's climate and some old plants (it is an evergreen plant) can be seen in the "Alpine Garden" at  UBC Botanical Garden and Centre for Plant Research.
- pelargonium Incrassatum - winter-growing with hairy leaves growing from tuberous roots and purple-pink flowers
- pelargonium Oblongatum- winter-growing with large, undivided leaves and pale yellow with red veining flowers
- pelargonium Quinquelobatum - parent of "Creamery" yellow-flowered hybrids, summer growing with five-lobed leaves (characteristic which give it its name)
- pelargonium Tongaense - looming more like an ivy-leaf but related to zonals with red flowers all the summer.




Another special plant, having the necessities to germinate in cold, the hardy Geranium Pratense "Mrs. Kendall Clarke" will bloom with pale blue with lighter marbling flowers.

Geranium Pratense, Mrs. Kendall Clarke
Geranium Pratense,  Mrs. Kendall Clarke

I hope the seeds will germinate well and in the next month or so, we will see how these plants develop, and I will be able to share some pictures with you.

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