How to Dry Geraniums Over the Winter


Geraniums occupy a coveted spot in the heart of the garden enthusiast. This one plant, more than any other, can be stored inside during the winter for future rejuvenation in the spring. Learning how to dry geraniums requires very little effort from the gardener. This task will allow you to salvage some of your annual plants for use the following growing season.

Step 1

Remove the geraniums from container gardens or flower beds before the first frost can damage tender leaves and flowers. Use the trowel to dig carefully around the plant about 6 inches from the center stem. Loosen the soil around the plant without chopping into the roots with the shovel.

Step 2

Wiggle the geranium free of the soil and shake off excess dirt from the plant's roots. Brush off the soil, using your fingers or a garden glove. Try to remove as much as possible to prevent transferring possible disease or soilborne pests inside over winter. Caked-on soil will also promote rotting of the roots. Allow the plant to dry for 24 hours in a cool location such as a garden shed or garage.

Step 3

Prune back all plant stems to a height of 6 to 8 inches. Use sharp pruning shears to limit damage to the plant stems.

Step 4

Place the geranium inside a paper grocery bag and store in a cool location featuring 35- to 45-degree Fahrenheit temperatures. Temperatures cannot go below freezing or this will permanently damage the geranium.

Step 5

Monitor the condition of the plants throughout the winter months by checking for overdrying of the stems and roots. If the plant becomes overly dry, fill a bucket with cool water and place the geranium in the bucket for two to three hours. Remove the plant and allow it to dry for four to six hours and place the geranium back in the paper bag. Check plants monthly to gauge if you need to soak the plants again.

Things You'll Need

  • Trowel
  • Pruning clippers
  • Paper grocery bags
  • Larger bucket
  • Water


  • University of Missouri: Geraniums
  • North Carolina State University: Geranium Culture for Home Gardeners
Keywords: dry geraniums, drying geraniums, overwinter geranium

About this Author

S.F. Heron is an avid gardener with three years of experience in online writing and a working background in aviation and earth and ocean sciences. She is published on various sites, including Helium, eHow and Xomba. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in journalism from the University of Maryland.