Balcon Geranium

(Question)

I notice that you mention the Balcon Princess Geranium in one of your articles. I live in Alberta and have been hunting for them for years without success. Would you happen to know where I might source these – either in plant form or seed? So far I have not found any greenhouse that carries them.

(Answer)

The botanical name for the balcon princess geranium is PELARGONIUM peltatum (BALCON SERIES). It is an ivy-leaved geranium that has a  compact form and grows vigorously.

These plants are ideal for patio containers or hanging baskets. Members of the Balcon Series come in an array of bright colors and continue to bloom profusely with little to no deadheading. Pinch plants back to encourage denser branching. The plant originally came from coastal areas of the Cape Region of South Africa. It’s easy to see why these plants are loved by many gardeners.

This ivy-leaved geranium does best in cool sun and fertile, humus-rich, well-drained soil. In really hot climates give it several hours of midday and afternoon shade. Water thoroughly when the soil surface feels dry.

You have stated that you are having difficulty purchasing these plants. One of the problems is that often times the bigger garden stores (aka big box stores) supply very basic plant labels. For example they may say “ivy geranium” and not identify the variety. You really need to go to a reputable garden centre or nursery in your area. You can run a quick search in Google using the terms ” garden centres” or “nurseries” and Calgary – for names.  We cannot really help you with that as we do not recommend individual businesses.

You may have better luck trying to find seeds. In Canada there are still companies producing seed catalogues (OSC Seeds, McKenzie and Stokes come to mind). Conduct another Google search using the terms “Canadian Seed Catalogues/Catalogs”. You may even find is useful to try looking for seed companies in the United States. You’ll have to order the print catalogues or search the catalogues online. Remember to use the botanical name as well as the common name of the plant. Hope this helps in your quest to find these attractive geraniums.