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Soil Conditions for Geraniums

By Brandii Lacey ; Updated September 21, 2017
Geraniums thrive when planted in good quality soil.

Geraniums are annual plants that thrive in gardens, if the soil conditions are correct. Poor soil conditions result in lack of blooms and possibly root rot. Geraniums planted in the correct soil environment produce large blooms in vibrant colors, including red, pink, purple, blue and white.

Fertilizer

Geraniums are often used in container gardening.

Soil used for planting geraniums requires nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. Garden centers sell premixed soils containing these ingredients. However, if your soil is lacking these ingredients, amend it with a 10-20-10 fertilizer (10 percent nitrogen, 20 percent phosphorus and 10 percent potassium).

Apply a water-soluble fertilizer to the soil every six weeks, but don't apply it directly to the geraniums' foliage.

PH level

Geraniums prefer a pH level of 5.8 to 6.2. Soil tests reveal the pH level of the geranium's soil. Soil tests are available at garden centers and through county extension offices. Garden centers sell ingredients to increase or decrease the pH level if needed.

Drainage

Drainage holes in flower pots aid in soil drainage for geraniums.

Geraniums grow best in well-drained soil. To test the soil’s drainage ability, dig a hole 8 inches deep and fill it with water. If water remains in the hole after two hours, the soil is not well-drained. To improve the drainage ability of the geranium’s soil, add peat moss or other compost material, available at garden centers.

Watering

Watering cans help direct water into the soil and away from foliage.

Provide the soil with 1 inch of water per week, if the geranium hasn't received that amount through rain. Water directly into the soil and not on the geranium’s foliage. Allow the soil to dry out completely between waterings.

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Considerations

Geraniums often respond well to growing in a soilless mixture. Soilless mixtures contain several ingredients for planting, but no actual soil. It’s lightweight, making it a nice alternative to heavier garden soils. In addition, there is no need to amend soilless mixes prior to planting.

 

About the Author

 

Brandii Lacey began writing in 1997 at "The Mountain Times" in Boone, N.C. Her articles appear on Trails.com, GardenGuides and eHow Home & Garden. She provides travel and lifestyle content for LIVESTRONG.COM. Lacey is the senior plays editor and on the nonfiction editorial team for "Mused Literary Review" magazine. She holds a Bachelor of Science in communications from Appalachian State University.