Six of the best scented geraniums and how to grow them
Scented geraniums are extremely popular garden plants and come with a surprising variety of fragrances. Here is a short guide on how to grow them and some of our favourite varieties.
Scented geraniums can be planted outdoors in border, containers, or hanging baskets during the summer months. If you do plant them outdoors, make sure they are positioned in a sunny sheltered spot. If you are planting in containers, terracotta is best as they naturally drain and evaporate water and geraniums do not like to sit in wet compost. However, also make sure that they do not dry out completely. Indoors they will tolerate any amount of heat but prefer not to be in direct sunlight for too long during a day. However, if kept away from a window they have a tendency to become a bit leggy due to insufficient natural light.
Scented geraniums will thrive in general purpose potting compost as long as it is mixed with plenty of horticultural grit for drainage. Free draining soil in borders is also essential if you are planting outdoors. Geraniums are drought tolerant so the best way to water them is from below and allow them to dry out fairly well before you water again. If you over winter them indoors, then reduce watering to a minimum. They do not need much in the way of feeding. But a general feed every couple of weeks during the growing season will ensure a longer flowering period. Pruning is also a good idea. Regular pruning will encourage bushy growth and prevent it from becoming leggy and deadheading will encourage the plant to produce more flowers. If your plant is thriving and growing well it may become necessary to re-pot it. However, only pots that are a size or two bigger as they do like to be root-bound.
Varieties of scented geranium
Scented geraniums are classed as herbs and have an amazing range of scents. Ardwick cinnamon has velvety silver-green leaves and sprays of small white flowers. Attar of Roses is a particular favourite with a distinct scent of roses. Brilliantine eau-de-cologne has a light purple flowers and a lovely scent of eau-de-cologne. Camphor Rose is an old fashioned geranium with a musky scent of camphor rose. Candy Dancer has a delightful Turkish delight smell. Creamy nutmeg has small variegated leaves and a nutty fragrance. Deerwood Lavender Lad is a trailing geranium with pretty magenta flowers and a lavender scent.