Geraniums

Gardner’s in Arizona knows that spring brings about an abundance of flowers and plants. New blooms grow profusely as the weather warms up. This year was no exception especially since we had such a mild winter without any frost!

Geraniums are a must in the desert southwest if you are looking for color that lasts from the fall all through the May or June. When planted in the fall, these plants maintain continuous color for several months. As the temperatures start to increase above a 100 degrees and climb up into the 105-110 degree range the plants don’t have a high chance of survival. I’ve had some plants that have lasted through the summer but it is very rare and really requires the right type of growing environment.

Geraniums require well draining soil and look great in containers. When grown close together these plants tend to stay smaller in size and ones that are spaced out and planted in the ground tend to get larger. Geraniums work well in companion plantings with several different other flowers. I have had a lot of success growing these with Petunias and Snap Dragons. Geraniums of different colors can be grouped together to achieve a focal point in the garden. These plants require 6+ hours of sunlight and regular feeding. I use slow release fertilizers to achieve the best results. I’ve seen Geraniums in many different colors varying from reds, to pinks, white and mixed color plants.

Your neighborhood home improvement store or nursery should have a good supply of these plants when it is the correct season for planting in your climate zone.

 

Blaze and America Roses

Roses need to be selected carefully due to the hot dry climate of the desert southwest. Two roses that do really well in Arizona are Blaze and America. Blaze is a shrub while America is a climbing rose.

  

Blaze shown above is beautiful when in full bloom. I’ve grown this in the garden in a spot that gets mostly morning sun and some filtered sun in the afternoon.

America can withstand hot temperatures and still perform really well. In the spring and fall it puts out many blooms. The very hot temperatures in the summer doesn’t allow for healthy blooms but the plant survives and starts to do well again in the fall once the weather cools down. This rose is on the east side of my garden that gets very hot afternoon sun and some reflected heat.