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Geranium pyrenaicum


By John Beaulieu (Bowl-you)

I have mentioned that I have many what I call ‘wild and weedy’ types of hardy geraniums. This year it is one of those that is putting on a good show and is turning into one of my favourites (for this year). I have some new Geranium pyrenaicum that I have grown from seed and this is their second year, and they are putting on quite a non-stop show. What they lack in flower size is made up for with flower quantity.

I have set up my pyrenaicum patch at the back of the garden on the edge of the woods, so they are in a wild-like area. There are in fact several varieties that have grown so large that they have all merged together in one mound. The three main varieties are ‘Isparta’, ‘Sarah’, and a large pink ‘Isparta’ selection. These were grown from seed sent from a friend in England. I also grow a shorter variety with darker purple flowers called ‘Bill Wallis’, which was grown from a geranium club seed fund.

I have grown the original (and smaller) white form, which I received from a geranium friend in Guelph, Ontario.

I had come across the smaller pink version at an area nursery. It was growing all over their display gardens, but I could not find it among the potted sales plants. I asked the owner about it and he said it has become a bit of a weed in their garden and I was welcome to pull up a plant if I wanted it. Well, I didn’t need to be told twice!

Also known as the Pyrenean Cranesbill, this pink variety is the usual colour. The starry white form is known as G. pyrenaicum albiflorum. The compact ‘Bill Wallis’ was raised and introduced by the late Bill Wallis of Cambridgeshire. ‘Isparta’ is named after the Isparta Province of Turkey, were it was collected. I know some people think that they are not really all that garden worthy and should only be grown in a ‘wild’ garden. They all do self-seed quite freely, but they are not that hard to control (weed out) if they get a little too wild.

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What a great profile and by all accounts a lovely plant if you have lots of room.
It looks good at the edge of your woodland John. Very nice that the nursery owner let you help yourself :)

25 Jun, 2013


what a marvellous collection you have. We have quite a few too, but yours look better!They are so big and healthy, must be your climate there!

25 Jun, 2013


I have a raised bed across the bottom of my garden overshadowed by the very high hawthorn hedge, last year I planted various of the geraniums in amongst the shrubs and pleased to say they like the conditions and are doing exactly what yours are, all merging in together, I also like the wild effect and hardly have any bare spaces this year.
A very interesting blog and thankyou for naming them....

25 Jun, 2013


Good that these plants survived the awful Canadian winters. Little but tough !

26 Jun, 2013


They're lovely. I like their simplicity.

26 Jun, 2013

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