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How To Cut Geraniums. 3 Best Methods To Master

It would be best to learn how to cut geraniums using three techniques to ensure that these plants are well-maintained. Remember that even though geraniums are easy to propagate, practices like cutting them will ensure that your mature geraniums will thrive and look their best. You can also keep your geraniums in the greenhouse in addition to cutting them to keep them stress-free and less likely to develop diseases. 

Remember that extreme cold or heat can damage geraniums. You can use the methods below to know how to care for them year-round and help the plant rejuvenate itself when damaged parts developed. However, maintaining them in a stable and protected space like the greenhouse would be optimal, especially if your region experiences harsh climates. 

 

How To Cut Geraniums. 3 Best Methods To Master

Comprehensive Guide For Cutting Geraniums

 

Method #1. Cutting back

There are many instances where it’s ideal for cutting back your geraniums. Remember that you are not trimming them lightly with this practice, so timing is crucial to ensure that they will grow back healthily. Experienced gardeners recommend cutting back geraniums by the end of fall or before you transfer them into the greenhouse for tidiness.

The former is also an excellent time to remember if you’re growing geraniums that stay green year-round. To cut back geraniums, remove the leggy and woody stems. You can end up cutting the plant back to half, depending on the woody growth. 

 

Method #2. Pruning

Geraniums that stay green year-round will benefit from cutting back in late fall. On the contrary, pruning the plants at the beginning of spring is best for geraniums that die back in the winter. These are also the plants that you need to encourage dormancy and overwinter into the greenhouse. 

Choose the brown and dead leaves and trim the stems that are no longer healthy. They can be the woody and leggy growths. You might also end up removing up to a third of the plant if necessary. 

 

Method #3. Pinching

The final method that you must learn for geraniums is pinching. While pinching is not necessarily a way to cut geraniums, it is still a practice that can be useful when growing your plants. When you have new plants, you do this whether you just placed them in the bedding or if they just came back from overwintering. 

Pinching is best in spring, where you’ll target the end of a stem around half an inch. You can also use scissors to snip the end once you notice your plant reaching around three inches tall. Do this on all the ends of stems to create a bushier and more compact geranium. 

The reason behind this trick is when you pinch throughout spring, new stems will grow from the original ones. Therefore, you’ll end up with a fuller-looking plant. However, the emphasis is necessary that whichever of the three techniques you do, always use sharp and sterile tools to avoid disease transmission and ensure clean cuts. 

 

 

Can You Deadhead Geraniums?

Geraniums, like most flowering plants, will benefit from deadheading. However, you want to do it with diligence to avoid damaging your plant. Please wait for the flowers to fade and wilt and then remove them.

Deadheading can be throughout the blooming season, every time you notice faded blooms. This will not only keep your plant looking tidy but removing the dead flowers will also encourage new blooms and extend the season. If you remove the dead flowers, your plant will have an easier time focusing its energy on bloom production. 

You can also remove the stem altogether if the entire flower cluster has died. Cut it at quarter an inch above the main stem or snap it downward. However, it’s better to use a sharp and sterile tool to lower the risk of damaging the plant and affecting its flowering. 

 

How To Increase Branching Of Geraniums

According to the University of Massachusetts Amherst, you can use Florel or ethephon to increase geranium branching. Remember that not all geranium cultivars typically produce plenty of flower stalks, so you can encourage them by using Florel around four weeks before you sell them and have better-looking plants. 

A rate of 350 to 500 ppm is recommended, but never apply late in the cycle. However, one can expect shorter internodes and smaller leaves after using Florel, and proper knowledge of the application is necessary. Nonetheless, this is a useful tip to remember, especially for those that grow geraniums for profit. 

 

Conclusion

Growing geraniums is relatively simple, but there are techniques that you must learn to encourage better-looking and healthier plants. For starters, know how to cut geraniums using three methods. They include cutting back in late fall if you have geraniums that stay green year-round or pruning geraniums that die in winter at the start of spring. 

If you have just finished overwintering geraniums or if you have new ones, pinching the end of branches will also encourage bushier growth. You can even use ethephon before selling your plants if your cultivars don’t produce many branches. Lastly, you can cut off faded blooms on your geraniums to extend the blooming season and keep the plants looking tidy. 

 

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How To Prevent Root Rot In Hydroponics: 3 Useful Tips

If you’re a newbie gardener who’s looking to find ways to hone your skills, you’d want to learn how to prevent root rot in hydroponics even before this problem affects your plants.

Hydroponics can be advantageous to crops in more ways than one. However, it also comes with risks of diseases, such as root rot, which can be destructive or even lethal to your plants.

Unfortunately, there are no effective methods to recover the wilted parts that were affected by the root rot once it hits your plants. The only thing you can do if you do not want this catastrophe to befall your crops is to prevent it before it happens. Read on to learn more about this subject.

 

What is Root Rot?

Root rot is a disease that attacks the plant roots and causes them to suffer decay. This usually happens when a lack of oxygen supply occurs in the substrate.

To give you an idea, think about plant roots that are submerged in water that only has a little oxygen in it. Over time, the plant suffocates and dies.

Aside from rot and decay, this disease also leads to the proliferation of fungi that are naturally present in the soil. These include Rhizoctonia, Alternaria, Pythium, Botrytis, Fusarium, or Phytophthora. As soon as fungi colonies start to grow, they tend to target the weakened roots and infect your precious plant babies.

Once the plant becomes infected, they won’t be able to take in what they need to grow – water, oxygen, and other nutrients. When this happens, it won’t be long before the plant dies.

 

What is Hydroponics?

In case you’re not aware, the term hydroponic is derived from a Latin word that means “working water”. To put it simply, hydroponics is an art that involves growing various types of plants without soil. If you’re like most people, the first thing that comes to mind when somebody talks about hydroponics would be a picture of plants with roots suspended into the water without using any type of growing medium.

 

Avoiding Root Rot in Hydroponic Systems

Detecting and identifying root rot can be tricky. When your plants get infected, their leaves and roots gradually wither until the whole crop itself dies from the lack of nutrients, which is a common symptom of many diseases.

 

What causes root rot in hydroponics?

One of the requirements in hydroponics systems is oxygen. Without it, your plants are basically on the road to death. On the other hand, lack of such is one of the major triggers for root rot, and it must be avoided at all costs.

Just like when planting in soil, you loosen up the ground so that your plants’ roots can have their required intake of oxygen. That is the case for crops grown in aqueous solutions as well. If they cannot breathe, they would not be able to grow.

Another agent for root rot is the temperature. The last thing you would want in your system are parasites that leech nutrients intended for your plants and infect the water during the process. In common terms, these fungi are called molds.

One of the best breeding grounds for these is warm and moist areas. For this reason, if the water temperature inside your reservoir is high, then you are susceptible to it. Something as minor as letting the solutions exposed to sunlight can already be a risk factor.

 

3 Useful Tips on How to prevent root rot in hydroponics

There is good news! Root rot in hydroponics can be prevented! Just follow these tips:

Tip#1: Use the right air pump

If you do not want root rot to affect your plants, you merely have to avoid its causes. If you need oxygen, keep the water bubbling by providing an air pump of appropriate size, and also give importance to proper ventilation in the room.

 

Tip #2: Maintain the temperature

The temperature should be maintained within the 70 to 80 degrees F range. Get rid of any materials that can make your system vulnerable to infections, and make sure not to disturb your crops while they are trying to grow.

 

Tip #3: Get rid of the rotten parts

However, if you failed in preventing the disease, then the rotten parts should be removed immediately. Cut them off as there is no chance of reviving them, and focus on the potential new growth instead. Fix your hydroponics system and eliminate the risks.

 

Why Give Greenhouse Gardening a Try?

Greenhouse gardening offers numerous benefits to greens aficionados who dare to take their gardening experience to the next level. Aside from acting as a shield against the effects of inclement weather, a mini, hobby, or semi-pro greenhouse can also serve as a protective layer that keeps harmful bugs and critters at bay.

What’s more, its enclosed structure allows you to control your plants’ growing conditions including the temperature, light, moisture, and ventilation of the greenhouse’s internal environment. With a controlled environment, you’ll be able to extend growing seasons and grow plants that aren’t native to your area.

 

Conclusion

No matter how well-informed you are about how to prevent root rot in hydroponics, you cannot completely eradicate the risks. Therefore, to avoid the worst-case scenario, you should be prepared to sacrifice the infected for the sake of others. While you’re at it, consider trying your hand at greenhouse gardening as well.

 

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