Known in Chile as "cardinals," his universal name "geranium" and further its scientific name is Pelargonium, a word derived from the Greek word "pelareos" which means "stork" for the resemblance of the beak of this bird to the seeds of the plant. The same applies to the common name genario, which derives from "Geran" which means "crane", for the same reason mentioned above.
Whatever it's called, it is certain that this is almost a symbol in Spain, where the white houses in the narrow cobbled streets, hanging on the balconies of the beautiful flowers of geranium. Similarly, in Chile took root in the habit of using them in the old homesteads, either in large jars of clay, on balconies or in pots.Certainly brings back memories of the past peasant.
They can be compared to the typical use of runners. They are symbols of an era, we might as well revive, because they have great advantages for use in a plot: through "pin" can be easily reproduced, are very resistant and do not represent a large investment, still, however, very decorative and ideal for "fill" a large area.
Characteristics of Cardinals
In the family Geraniaceae, comprises about two hundred species and is native to South Africa. They are herbaceous or semi shrubby, evergreen, which can be opposite or alternate, simple or compound, palmate or cut consistency
fleshy or thin, ranging in color from light green to dark.
Its flowers, which irregularly shaped with five petals, meet in umbels, which is the highest part of the rigid stems, and its color can range from white to red and violet, through the range of pinks, but very rarely can find some examples in shades of yellow. They have no scent whatsoever.
Geraniums prefer temperate climates, but can be planted in full sun or partial shade and developed alike.
With respect to the ground, it can be acidic, but in any case not too alkaline. The ideal is to be rich in organic matter, but manure is not advisable.
Their proliferation is usually done by cuttings in spring and late summer. Cut the stems with a sharp knife, leaving at least three knots. The cuttings, without the lower leaves and keeping the lock terminal is set to take root in very sandy soil and shade.
About twenty days later has a good mass of roots and after a month and a half can be transplanted to their final destination.
An important detail is to keep the land of the long cuttings moist but not soggy.
For pot culture, it is best to select from 20cm deep by 15cm wide and about 40cm long, if you want to grow in pairs.
In the plantation on the land should be spaced 30cm. away.
- To improve flowering plants causing better and stronger and dense foliage, it is advisable to renew them every year through autumn cuttings.
- In mild climates it is recommended to totally suspend the risks from June to late August, also cutting the stems to 15cm of soil.
- In regard to the risks, it is good provide daily to each plant one or two glasses of water during the summer, doses must be increased or decreased depending on the temperature conditions in the area (the greater the heat, higher risk).
- An ideal fertilizer for the Cardinals is a nutrient mixture of water, foliar fertilizer and humus. It can be applied to the soil and foliage, it revives the color of the flowers and leaves.
- Once a week is necessary to cut the flowers wilted and yellow leaves, renew the earth and vegetation control in time to intervene against the agents of various diseases or insects.
As we can see, growing geraniums cardinals or not at all difficult and presents, however, many advantages.
Be sure to use in rocky areas in clay pots, which look wonderful, and, of course, on the balconies, where, contrasting with the coldness and hardness of wrought iron, warm cardinals can produce a beautiful effect.
Very decorative, the cardinals are also used for edging a path, as in this case.They do not need more care.
The striking "cardinals" (geraniums) brighten any corner of a parcel. They reproduce easily through pins.
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