Collecting geranium seeds is a rewarding and cost-effective way to propagate new plants for your garden.
In this article I’ll show you step by step how I collect geranium seeds, and share some tips to grow them into healthy, thriving plants.
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When to Collect Geranium Seeds
Knowing the right time to collect geranium seeds is essential for successful propagation.
Geraniums bloom from spring until fall and the seed pods start to develop after the flowers have started to dry out, usually appearing in pairs.
When the seed pod is ready for harvesting, it will change color, going from green to brown.
At this stage, the seed pod usually swells and starts to split open.
Gathering Seed Pods and Seeds
The process of collecting geranium seeds can be a bit tricky because geranium seed pods have a habit of opening and catapulting seeds away from the plant once they’re ripe.
To successfully collect the seeds, you’ll need to be observant and patient, allowing the flowers to dry out completely so the seed pods can form.
I’ve found that placing small mesh bags over the seed pods makes it easier to catch the seeds from the ripened pods, so they don’t get blown away by the wind.
Wait until the seed heads have turned brown and are completely dry.
Remove the mesh bags from the plant and use scissors to cut them off the plant, being careful not to pull the seed heads as it can cause the plant to release the seeds prematurely.
Separating the Seeds From the Seed Pod
Gently open up the seed pod using your fingernails and you’ll see lots of smaller pods attached to a white feather-like stem, as shown in the picture below.
It’s best to do this indoors, so that the seeds don’t blow away.
To access the actual seeds, you’ll need to open up the smaller pod.
These are the seeds and they can be gently removed and placed in an envelope or container.
Store the seeds in a cool, dark place to maintain their viability.
Starting Geranium Seeds Indoors
I recommend soaking the seeds for 24 to 36 hours before planting to speed up the germination process.
You can use seed trays, pots, or even small cups with drainage holes to start the geranium seeds.
Fill the planting containers with moist, potting soil and lightly sprinkle the geranium seeds over the surface of the soil.
Gently press them into the soil and cover them lightly with a thin layer of potting mix or sand.
Place your containers in a warm, brightly lit spot and keep them moist.
Transplanting Geranium Seedlings
In about 10 to 14 days, you should notice your geranium seeds starting to germinate.
When your geranium seedlings are about 2 to 3 inches (5 to 7 cm) tall, you can carefully transplant them into larger containers or garden beds outdoors.
Geraniums grow best in well-drained soil in a sunny spot, but they also do well in partial shade.
Water your geraniums when the top of the soil feels dry to the touch. Avoid overwatering, as this can lead to root rot and fungal diseases.
Fertilize your geraniums every 4 to 6 weeks during the growing season for beautiful, long lasting flowers.
According to Iowa State University Extension, geraniums will start to bloom 13 to 15 weeks after sowing the seeds.
What do Geranium Seed Pods Look Like?
Geranium seed pods are about one inch (2.5 cm) long and start out green, turning brown once they’ve dried out.
What do Geranium Seeds Look Like?
Geranium seeds are light brown in color, and about half the size of a grain of white rice, as shown in the picture below.
How Long Does It Take For Geranium Seeds To Germinate?
It normally takes about 7 to 14 days for geranium seeds to germinate, but this time frame can vary depending on the temperature and the amount of moisture in the soil.
So there are my tips for collecting, storing and planting geranium seeds.
With patience and a little bit of care, you’ll be able to grow beautiful geraniums from seed.
Have you tried harvesting seeds from your geraniums? Let me know in the comments below.