Ivy geraniums, also known by their scientific name, Pelargonium peltatum, are less common than their cousins, common or zonal geraniums. They are, however, becoming more popular for growing in hanging baskets and window boxes throughout the country. Native to South Africa, ivy geraniums require mild temperatures to thrive and are typically grown indoors in the United States during the hottest and coldest parts of the year. With proper care, these delicate, trailing plants will grace your container garden with abundant blossoms in shades of scarlet, red, pink or white, depending on variety.
Plant ivy geraniums during spring in a container filled with a growing medium made of two parts potting soil and one part peat moss. Place the container in a sunny location indoors or outdoors, depending on your climate.
Maintain a constant temperature of 60 to 65 degrees Fahrenheit during the day and 50 to 55 degrees Fahrenheit at night for the best results. Use a thermometer to monitor the temperature near the plants if necessary.
Water the plant immediately after planting and once per week thereafter during spring, summer and fall. Reduce the frequency of watering to once every two weeks during winter, when the plant is dormant.
Fertilize once each month using an all-purpose houseplant fertilizer. Water the plant both before and after applying the fertilizer to release the nutrients into the soil. Apply following the instructions provided on the package. Do not fertilize during winter.
Remove dead ivy geranium flowers each day to promote the formation of new blossoms. Cut off the flowers at their point of origin to reduce the chance of disease and increase nutrient conservation.
Transplant ivy geranium into a new container once every two years to prevent the plant from wilting. Increase the size of the container by 2 to 3 inches to provide room for growth. Do not increase the size by more than 4 inches, however, as ivy geraniums prefer to be root-bound.