Pelargonium / p l r oʊ n i m _ _ _ _ / [5] is a genus of flowering plants which includes abo ut 280 species of perennials , succulents , and shrubs , [4] commonly known as geraniums , pelargoniums , or storksbills . Geranium is also the botanical name and common name for a separate genus of related plants, also known as cranebills. Both genera belong to the family Geraniaceae . Carl Linnaeus originally included all species in one genus, Geranium , and they were later separated into two genera.Charles Louis Lahertier de Brutale in 1789.


While Geranium species are mostly temperate herbaceous plants, dying out in winter, Pelargonium species are evergreen perennials indigenous to warm temperate and tropical regions of the world , with several species in southern Africa. They are drought and heat tolerant, but can tolerate only minor frosts. Some species are extremely popular garden plants , grown as houseplants and bedding plants in temperate regions . They have a long flowering period, with flowers mostly red, orange, or white in color; But intensive breeding has produced varieties with great diversity in size, flower colour, leaf form and aromatic foliage.A huge range has been produced.

Word – medium

The name pelargonium is derived from Greek αργός, pelargós ( stork ), because the seed head looks like the beak of a stork. Dillenius originally suggested the name ‘stork’, because Geranium was named after a crane – ” a αργός, Ciconia, sicuti vocamus Gerania , ανός, grus ” (from pelargos , stork, as we call Gerania , geranos) , crane).


Pelargonium occurs in a large number of growth forms , including herbaceous annuals, shrubs, subshrubs, stem succulents and geophytes. [8] The erect stems bear to five petaled flowers in panicle-like clusters, which are sometimes branched. Because not all flowers appear at once, but open outward from the center, it is a form of inflorescence called a pseudoembel.

The flower has a single symmetry plane (zygomorphic), which distinguishes it from the geranium flower, which has radial symmetry (actinomorphic). Thus the lower three (anterior) petals differ from the upper two (posterior) petals. The posterior sepals are fused with the stalk to form a hypanthium (nectary tube). The nectary tube varies from only a few millimeters to several centimeters, and is an important floral feature in morphological classification. The stamens vary from 2 to 7, and their number, position relative to the staminode, and curvature are used to identify individual species. There are five stigmas in the genre. [9] For the considerable variation in flower morphology, see Figure 1 of Rauschenbach et al .

The leaves are usually alternate, and palmately lobed or pinnate, often on long stalks, and sometimes with a light or dark pattern. The leaves of Pelargonium peltatum (ivy -leaved geranium ) have a thick cuticle that adapts them better to drought tolerance .


Pelargonium is the second largest genus (after Geranium ) within the family Geraniaceae, within which it is sister in its true sense to the rest of the genera of the family, [11] including Erodium , Geranium , and Monsonia Sarcocaulon . The Geraniaceae have several genetic features unique among angiosperms, including highly rearranged plastid genomes that differ in gene content, sequence and extent of inverted repeats.

genus history

The name Pelargonium was first proposed in 1732 by Dillenius, [12] who described and described seven species of geraniums from South Africa that are now classified as Pelargoniums . [13] [14] Dillenius, who known these seven species with distinct unique characteristics as Geranium africanum (African Geranium) [15] suggested ” Possent ergo ii, quibus novi generis cupido est, ea, Corum Flores inaequales vell et irrregulares sunt, Pelargonia vocare ” (those wishing a new genus may call those whose flowers are uneven or irregular, ‘Pelargonia’). [7]The name was then formally introduced by Johannes Bermann in 1738 although Carl Linnaeus who first formally recognized these plants in 1753 did not describe Pelargonium and grouped together in the same genus ( Geranium ) in three similar genera Erodium , Geranium , and Pelargonium . [16] Linnaeus’s reputation prevented further discrimination for forty years. [14] The final distinction between them was made by Charles L’Herritier on the basis of the number of stamens or anthers , seven in the case of Pelargonium . In 1774, P. cordatum , P. crispum , P. quercifolium and P. radulawere introduced, after which P. capitatum in 1790 [17] [13]


Pelargoniums are placed apart from other genera of the family Geraniaceae by the presence of a hypanthium which consists of a nectary spur with an ascending nectary, as well as a generally zygomorphic floral symmetry. [8]


De Candole first proposed dividing the genus into 12 classes based on the diversity of growth forms in 1824. [18] Traditionally a large number of Pelargonium species have been treated as sixteen classes, [9] 19] based on the classification of Knuth (1912) who described 15 classes, [20] van der Walt Modified by et al . 1977–1997 ) who added Corisma , Reniformia and Subsucculentia .

These are as follows;

  • Section Campilia (Lindley East Suite) de Candole
  • Block Chorisma (Lindley East Suite) De Candole
  • Segment Seconium (Sweet) Harvey
  • Volume Cortucina (DC.) Harvey
  • Section Glaucophyllum Harvey
  • Khand Horia (Sweet) De Candole
  • Section Isopetalum (Sweet) de Candolle
  • Section Jenkinsonia (Sweet) De Candole
  • Section Ligularia (Sweet) Harvey
  • section Myrrhidium de Candolle
  • Section Otidia (Lindley East Suite) de Candole
  • Segment Pelargonium (Sweet) Harvey
  • Volume Peristera di Candole
  • Section Polyactium de Candole
  • Section Reniformia (Knuth) Dreyer
  • Section Subsucculentia JJA van der Walt

phylogenetic analysis

All subdivision classifications relied mainly on morphological differences until the era of phylogenetic analysis (Price and Palmer 1993). [11] Although phylogenetic analysis shows only three distinct clades, labeled A, B and C, [21] not all classes in this analysis were phylogenetic although some were strongly supported including Chorisma , Myrrhidium and Jenkinsonia , while other classes were more Paraphyletic. This in turn has given rise to an informal proposal at this stage of reformation of the infrageneric subdivision of Pelargonium .

In the proposed scheme of Weng et al . There will be two subgenera, seven sections based on subgenera and subgenera, A + B, and C, respectively. Subsequent analysis with an expanded taxa set confirmed this infragenic subdivision into two groups, which correspond to chromosome length (<1.5 μ, 1.5–3.0μ), [8] but within each major clade with two subclades. There are also classes, which suggest the presence of four subgenera, these are consistent with the earlier analyses, A, B, C1 and C2, with A141 taxa being by far the largest clade. Monophyletic few classes (as preceded by internal structure of supported clades of Myrrhidium , Chorisma , Reniformia , Pelargonium , Ligularia and Hoarea), but paraphyly in others ( Jenkinsonia , Ciconium , Peristera ). A separate clade can be identified within the paraphyletic Polyactium, the section named Magnistipulaceae . As a result, Polyactium has been divided to provide this new section, which includes two subdivisions, Magnistipulaceae and Schizopetala , following Knuth’s original treatment of Polyactium as four subdivisions .

Thus Rauschenblake et al. (2014) provide a complete revision of the subgeneric classification of Pelargonium , based on four subgenera corresponding to their major groups (A, B, C1, C2);

  • Subgenus Magnipetala Rauschenbl. and F. Albers Type: Pelargonium primorsum (Andrews) F. Dietrich
  • Subgenus Parvulipetala Roeschenbl. and F. Albers Type: Pelargonium hypoleucum turkzhaninov
  • Subgenus Possisignata Rauschenbl. and F. Albers Type: Pelargonium zonal (L.) L’Her. in Eton
  • Subgenus Pelargonium L’Har. Type: Pelargonium cuculatum (L.) aeton [8]

Sixteen classes were then assigned to the new subspecies as follows, although at this stage many species were assigned to subgenera only.

  • Subgenus Magnipetala 3 segment
    • Section Chorisma (Lindley x Sweet) de Candole – 4 species
    • Section Jenkinsonia (sweet) de Candole – 11 species
    • Section Myrrhidium de Candolle – 8 species
  • Subspecies Parvulipetala 3 classes
    • Section Isopetalum (Sweet) de Candole – 1 species ( Pelargonium cotyledonis (L.) L’her.)
    • Section Peristera de Candole – 30 species
    • Section Reniformia (Knuth) Dreyer – 8 species
  • Subgenus Paucisignata 2 Vol
    • Segment Seconium (Sweet) Harvey – 16 species
    • Section Subsucculentia JJA van der Walt – 3 species
  • Subgenus Pelargonium 8 segments
    • Section Campilia (Lindley ex Sweet) de Candole – 9 species
    • Section Cortucina (DC.) Harvey – 7 species
    • Khand Horia (Sweet) de Candole – 72 species
    • Section Ligularia (Sweet) Harvey – 10 species
    • Section Magnistipulacea Roeschenbl. and F. Albers Type: Pelargonium squaleri Knuth – 2 subdivisions
      • Subdivision Magnistipulcia Rauschenbl. and F. Albers Type: Pelargonium sclatteri Knuth – 2 species ( P. sclatteri and P. luridum )
      • Subsection Schizopetala (Knuth) Rauschenbl. and F. Albers Type: Pelargonium caphrum (Singl. & Zeh.) Studel – 3 species ( P. caphrum , P. bockeri , P. schizopetalum )
    • Section Otidia (Lindley x Sweet) de Candole – 14 species
    • Segment Pelargonium L’Her. – 34 species
    • Section Polyactium de Candolle – 2 Subdivisions
      • Subdivision Caulsantia Knuth – 1 species ( Pelargonium gibbosum )
      • Subsection Polyactium de Candole – 7 species


Subgenus Magnipetala : corresponds to the C1 clade, with 24 species. Perennial to short-lived, spreading sub-shrubs, rarely herbaceous annuals. The petals may be five, but four, the color mainly white. The predominantly winter rain zone of South Africa, extending into the summer rain zone. One species in northern Namibia and Botswana. Two species in East Africa and Ethiopia. Chromosomes x=11 and 9.

Subgenus Parvulipetala : belongs to the B clade with 39–42 species. Perennial, partly annual. Petals five and equal, color white or pink to deep purple red. Mainly South Africa, but also other Southern Hemisphere except South America. Some species in East Africa and Ethiopia. Chromosome x=7-19.

Subgenus Paucisignata : corresponds to the C2 clade, with 25–27 species. Occasionally straighten trailing shrubs or sub-shrubs, rarely geophytes or semi-geophytes. Petals five more equal, color pink to red sometimes white. The summer rain zone of South Africa, with some species in tropical Africa, Ethiopia, Somalia, Madagascar, the Arabian Peninsula and Asia Minor, extends into the winter rain zone and northern Namibia. Chromosome x=mainly 9 or 10, but from 4-18.

Subgenus Pelargonium : with 167 species, corresponds to Clade A. Often xerophytic deciduous perennials, less often woody evergreen shrubs or annual herbs, with many geophytes and succulent subshrubs. Petals five, shades of pink to purple or yellow. The winter rain zone of South Africa and adjacent Namibia, spreading to the summer rain zone, and two species in tropical Africa. Chromosomes can be x=11, 8-10. [8]


There are about 280 species of Pelargonium . [4] [21] Roschenblake et al lists 281 taxa. [8] There is considerable confusion about which pelargoniums are the true species, and which are cultivars or hybrids. The nomenclature has changed significantly since the first plants were introduced to Europe in the 17th century. [22]


Pelargonium is a large genus within the Geraniaceae family, with a distribution in temperate to subtropical regions with about 800 mostly herbaceous species. [8] Pelargonium itself is native to southern Africa (including Namibia) and Australia. 90% of the genus is in southern Africa, with only about 30 species found elsewhere, mainly in the East African Rift Valley (about 20 species) and southern Australia, including Tasmania. [8] The remaining few species are found in southern Madagascar, Yemen, Iraq, Asia Minor, north of New Zealand, and isolated islands in the South Atlantic Ocean (Saint Helena and Tristan da Cunha) and Socotra in the Indian Ocean. [8]The center of diversity is in south-western South Africa where rainfall is limited to winter, in contrast to the rest of the country where rainfall is mainly in the summer months. [8] Most pelargonium plants grown in Europe and North America originated in South Africa. [22]


Pelargonium species are eaten by caterpillars of some Lepidoptera species, including the noctuid moth Angle Shades, Phlogophora meticulosa . The diurnal butterflies Cacyreus marshalli and C. tespis (Lycaenidae), native to South Africa, also feed on Geranium and Pelargonium . [23] C. marshalli has been introduced to Europe and can develop as a pest on cultivated pelargoniums. It has become naturalized along the Mediterranean, but does not survive the winter in Western Europe. [24]

The Japanese beetle, an important agricultural insect pest, becomes paralyzed after rapidly consuming flower petals of a hybrid species known as garden “zonal geraniums” ( P  ×  hortorum ). This phenomenon was first described in 1920, and later confirmed. [25] [26] [27] [28] Research conducted by Dr. Christopher Ranger with the USDA Agricultural Research Service and other collaborating scientists has shown that the paralysis of excitatory amino acids called quicyclic acids present within flower petals Is responsible. Japanese Beetle. [29] [30] Quisqualic acid is thought to mimic L-glutamic acid, a neurotransmitter at the insect neuromuscular junction and the mammalian central nervous system.

A study by the Laboratory of Apiculture and Social Insects Group at the University of Sussex on the attractiveness of common garden plants to pollinators found that a variety of Pelargonium ×  hortorum was more attractive to pollinators than other selected garden plants such as Lavandula (lavender). was unattractive. and Origin . [32]

pests and diseases

Geranium bronze butterfly is a moth of Pelargonium species. The larvae of Geranium bronze penetrate the stem of the host plant, causing the stem to usually turn black and soon die. Geranium bronze is currently listed as an A2 quarantine pest by the European and Mediterranean Plant Protection Organization and can cause significant damage to Pelargonium species. [33]


Various types of pelargoniums regularly participate in flower shows and competitive events, with many societies devoted exclusively to their cultivation. They are easy to propagate vegetatively from cuttings. [34] [35] [36] Zonal geraniums grow in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 9 through 12. Regional geraniums are tropical perennials in origin. Although they are often grown as annuals, they can overwinter in cool areas such as zone 7. [37]

history of farming

The first species of Pelargonium known to be cultivated was P. trist , native to South Africa . It was probably brought to the Botanical Garden in Leiden on ships that stayed at the Cape of Good Hope before 1600. In 1631, the English gardener John Tradescant bought seeds from René Morin in Paris and introduced the plant to England. By 1724, P. inquinans , P. odoratissimum , P. peltatum , P. vitifolium , and P. Zonal was introduced to Europe. [17]


Little effort was made on any rational group of varieties of Pelargonium, the cultivation of which was revived in the mid-twentieth century, and the origins of most were lost in obscurity. In 1916 the American botanist Liberty Hyde Bailey (1858–1954) introduced two new terms for zonal and regal pelargoniums. Those pelargoniums that are largely P. Zonal, he P. × hortorum (i.e. from the garden), while P. From Cuculatum he P. Named × domesticum (ie from home). [38] [39] A list (Spalding List) was prepared in the late 1950s based on nursery listings in the United States and Henry Douthene’s 1897 list.[40] It describes seven groups, listing each farmer with a list of his originator, and in most cases a date. These species were zonal, variegated-leaved, domestic (regales), ivy-leaved, scent-leaved and old. In the 1970s the British Pelargonium and Geranium Society prepared a checklist, and the Australian Geranium Society began to maintain a register, but it was not completed until the death of its author, Jean Llewellyn, in 1999. None of these were published. The most complete list at its time was the 2001 compilation by The Geraniaceae Group, [41] which included all cultivars up to 1959. [42]

Registration of the varieties is the responsibility of the Pelargonium and Geranium Society (PAGS: formed in 2009 from the British Pelargonium and Geranium Society and the British and European Geranium Society) [43] which manages the International Register of Pelargonium Cultivars. [44] The PAGS of the International Society for Horticultural Science for Pelargonium is the International Farmer Registration Authority (ICRA). 

In addition to pelargoniums and primary hybrids, cultivated pelargoniums are generally divided into six groups [46] . The following list is ranked by position in the PAGS classification. [47] The abbreviations indicate the use of the Royal Horticultural Society. [48]

  • A Regional (Z)
  • B. Ivy-leaved (I)
  • Sea Regal (R)
  • De Angel (A)
  • E. Unique (U)
  • F. Aromatic-leaved (SC)
  • G species
  • H. Primary Hybrids

Of these, the A, U and SC groups are sometimes grouped together as species derivatives (SPPDs). This term implies that they are closely related to the species from which they were derived, and do not fit into the R, I or Z groups. [49]

In addition to primary groups, additional descriptors are used. The Royal Horticultural Society has created description codes. This includes; [48]

  • Cactus (Ca)
  • colored leaves (c)
  • Decorative (December)
  • double (d)
  • Dwarf (Dw)
  • Dwarf Ivy-leaved (Dwl)
  • frutetorum (Fr)
  • short (minimum)
  • Miniature Ivy-Leaved (Mini)
  • stellar (st)
  • Tulip (T)
  • fraction (v)

These can then be combined to form a cod , for example Pelargonium ‘Chelsea Gem’ (Z/D/V), with variegated foliage indicating the zonal double. [50] Crosses between groups are denoted with a ×, for example Pelargonium ‘Hindu’ (R × U), indicating a regal × unique cross. [51]

A. Zonal Pelargonium ( Pelargonium × hortorum baili )

These are known as zonal geraniums because many have areas or patterns in the center of the leaves, [36] a contribution of the Pelargonium zonal parent. Common names include storksbill, fish or horseshoe geranium. [49] They are also called Pelargonium × hortorum baili Zonal Pelargoniums are tetraploid, mostly P. inquinans and P. _ zonal , [52] together with P. scandens and P. Frutatorum . [36] [46]

Zonal pelargoniums are mostly shrub-type plants with succulent stems that are grown for the beauty of their flowers, traditionally red, salmon, purple, white or pink. [36] The red coloration is attributed to the contribution of P. inquinans . [17] Flowers can be double or single. Those pelargoniums are most often confused with the genus Geranium , especially in summer bedding arrangements. This misnomer is widely used in horticulture, especially in North America.

Zonals include genetic hybrids as well as a variety of plants such as hybrid ivy-leaved varieties that display ivy leaf characteristics (Deacon varieties), or stellate varieties. Hybrids are crosses between zonal zonals and either a species or species-derived pelargonium. [49] Hundreds of regional varieties are available for sale, [53] and are sold in series like ‘Rocky Mountain’, [54] each of which is named after its dominant colour, such as ‘Rocky Mountain Orange’, ‘White’, ‘Dark Red’ , etc. 

  • (i) Parent Plants – Mature plants with leaves usually no more than 7″ (180 mm) above the rim of the pot. These should be grown in pots of no more than 4 ” for display.+3/4 ” ( 120 mm) in diameter but generally no more than 6+1/2 ” ( 165 mm) .
  • (ii) Dwarf plants – smaller than the root. Mature plants with leaves no more than 5″ (125 mm) above the rim of the pot, but normally no more than 7″ (180 mm). For exhibition should be grown in a pot at most 3+1/2 ” ( 90 mm ) , but no more than 4+3/4 ” ( 120 mm). They should not exceed 200 mm in height, grown in an 11 cm pot. [ 49]
  • (iii) Miniature Plants – Slow growing pelargoniums. Mature plants with leaves usually less than 5″ (125 mm) above the rim of the pot. Grow for exhibition in a pot that does not exceed 3+1 2 ” (90 mm). Their height should not exceed 125 mm, grown in 9 cm pots. [ 49]
  • (iv) Micro Miniature Plants – Smaller and more slow growing than miniature pelargoniums. Mature plants with leaves usually less than 4″ (100 mm) above the rim of the pot. They should not exceed 75 mm in height, are grown in 6 cm pots. [49] There is usually no display for these. Does not have a separate category and will therefore normally be shown as a minor zonal.
  • (v) Deaf varieties – Genetic hybrids similar to big dwarfs. For exhibition (when shown in a separate section), usually grown in pots larger than 5″ (125 mm), otherwise for dwarf zonal.
  • (vi) Stellar varieties – a relatively modern genetic hybrid resulting from crosses between Australian species and regional types from work done by both Australian hybridizer Ted in the late 1950s and 1960s. They are easily recognizable by their distinctive semi-star-shaped leaves and thin-petaled blooms that appear to be star-shaped (or five-fingered). Single varieties have large elongated triangular petals while doubles have thin wing petals that are tightly packed together. There is a separate class for ‘stellar’ varieties for exhibition purposes, but being zonal, basic, dwarf or miniature may be shown in an open class for zonal (unless otherwise stated). “The Five-Finger Geranium”, “Staphysagroides”, “Boeth’s Staphs”, “Boeth’s Hybrid Staphs”, “[49]

Fancy-leaf zonal pelargonium – in addition to having green leaves with or without zoning, this group also has variable colored foliage [49] that is sometimes used to classify for exhibition purposes, such as ‘bicolor’ , ‘Tricolor’, ‘Bronze’ or ‘Gold”. Other leaf types are: ‘Black’ or ‘Butterfly’. The number of these showy blooming plants is on the rise;

  • (a) Becolor – This includes having white or creamy leaves or having two different colors having clearly defined edges apart from the root zone.
  • (b) Tricolor – (can be a tricolor of silver (commonly called silver leaf) or a tricolor of gold).
    • (i) Tricolor of Gold – Leaves of many colors, including red and gold, but usually golden yellow with clearly defined edges and having a leaf area, usually red or bronze, which is divided into two or more other distinct leaflets. Overlays the colors, so that the zone itself appears as two or more distinct colors.
    • (ii) Silver tricolor or silver leaf – These resemble a common bi-coloured leaf plant, with two distinct colors usually green and light cream or white; The third color is usually made of bronze zoning. When this zoning overlays the green part of the leaf it is considered a representation of silver color.
  • (c) Bronze Foliage – Green or golden/green leaves with a heavy bronze or chestnut colored center area known as a medallion. For exhibition purposes, when displayed in the typical ‘bronze’ leaf square – more than 50% of the leaf surface must be bronze colored. Dwarf plant ‘Overchurch’ bearing heavy bronze medallion.
  • (d) Gold left – leaves with golden/yellow or green/yellow color but do not show a tendency to green. For exhibition purposes, when displayed in the typical ‘Gold’ leaf class – more than 50% of the leaf surface must be gold colored.
  • (e) Black-leaved – The leaves are dark, purple-black or green with distinct large dark areas or center markings.
  • (f) Butterfly Leaved – Leaves with a butterfly mark of distinctive tone or color in the center of the leaf. It can be incorporated into many colorful leaf varieties.

Zonal pelargoniums have several types of flowers, which are as follows: [49]

  • (A) Single flower (S) – Each flower pipe generally has no more than five petals. This is the standard flower set for all pelargoniums.
  • (b) Semi-Double Flower (SD) – Each flower pipe normally has between six and nine petals.
  • (c) double flowers (d) – each flower pipe composed of more than nine petals (i.e. twice the standard flower set), but not a ‘heart’ like a rose bud, for example the dwarf ‘Dowpoint’ which has full double blooms .
  • (d) Rosebud (or noset) flowers – each completely double and ‘heart’ blooms. The petals in the middle are so numerous that they remain open like a rose bud. [49]
  • (e) Tulip flowers – Semi-double flowers that never fully open. The large cup-shaped petals open wide enough to resemble a miniature tulip.
  • (f) Bird-egg group – blooms with petals, which have darker spots than the base color, like the eggs of many birds. [49]
  • (g) A cluster of speckled flowers – whose petals are marked with splashes and streaks of another color, as in ‘Vectis Embers’.
  • (h) Quilled (or cactus-flowered group, or poinsettia in the United States) – petal folded and withered like a quill. [49]

“Zonquil” pelargonium zonal pelargonium cultivars and P. quinquelobatum arises from a cross between . [49]

Bee ivy- leaved pelargonium ( obtained from Pelargonium peltatum )

Also known as “Ivy Geranium”. [49] The species P. peltatumDeveloped by thick, waxy ivy-shaped hard fleshy evergreen leaves. Hanging pots, tubs and baskets are used a lot for cultivation. In the UK the bulbous double-headed types are preferred, while on the European continent the single type is preferred to the Balkans for large-scale hanging floral displays. Ivy-leaved pelargoniums encompass all such growth shape types including short-leaved varieties and genetic hybrid crosses that exhibit little or no zonal characteristics. There may be two colored leaves and the flowers may be single, double or rosette. Ivy pelargonium is often sold as a series such as ‘Great Balls of Fire’, in various colors such as ‘Great Balls of Fire Burgundy’.

Additional descriptive words include; [49]

  • Hybrid ivy – the result of an ivy × zonal cross, but still more closely resembles ivy-leaved pelargonium.
  • Fancy Leaf – Leaves with color variation marked with green or with other.
  • Miniature – Short leaves and flowers, stems with small nodes, and compact growth. For example ‘Sugar Baby’ [56] is listed by the RHS as Dwarf Ivy (DwI). [48]

C. regal pelargonium ( Pelargonium × domesticum baili )

These are large shrub-type flowering evergreen pelargoniums. In addition to “regals” they are also known as “show pelargoniums”. In the United States they are often referred to as “Martha Washington” or “Lady Washington” pelargoniums. They are grown primarily for the beauty and richness of their flower heads, which are larger. Currently grown Most of the varieties known are the result of hybridization over the past 50 years. They are very low-combined and compact, with the result that they require little work to produce a flowering and well-rounded plant. [49] [47] The flowers are single, rarely double, pink, purple or white. They have rounded, rounded, unlike zonal clusters, without any zoning.

Additional descriptive words include; [49]

  • Fancy Leaf – Leaves with marked variations in color
  • Ornamental Pelargonium (Ornamental) – a descendant of older, less compact, smaller-flowered varieties that are more adapted to outdoor conditions. They have smaller flowers than Regal, but are otherwise similar. Like ‘Royal Ascot’
  • Miniature – Flowers and leaves similar to Regal, but short in form, with compact growth. Other terms include “pansy geranium” or “pansy pelargonium”. Like ‘Lara Susan’
  • Oriental pelargonium – the result of a cross between members of the Regals and Angel groups (see below). Some have bicolor leaves.

D. Angel Pelargonium ( obtained from Pelargonium crispum )

Angel pelargoniums are similar to regal pelargoniums but differ in leaf shape and growth habit from P. Closer to crispum . Most of the Angel varieties originated in the early part of the 20th century by P. crispumand the Regal variety. Angels have grown in popularity over the past 30 years or so mainly due to the explosion of new cultivars being released by specialist nurseries as a result of work done by dedicated amateur hybridists. These hybridizations have managed to achieve many new flower color breaks and stricter growth habits resulting in plants suitable for all types of conditions. Angels basically have a small regal appearance with small serrated leaves and very small flowers and tend to be more compact and bushy. The group includes similar small-leafed and -flowered types, but usually has P.Crisp happens. They are mostly upright shrub-type plants but there are some loose varieties that can be used for basket or hanging pot cultivars. Often called “pansy-faced” in America. Some varieties have bicolor leaves. Other terms include ‘Langley-Smith hybrids’. [49]

E. Unique Pelargonium ( obtained from Pelargonium fulgidum )

Unique in the sense that it does not fit into any of the above categories. The paternity of the unique pelargonium is confusing and unclear. One theory is a derivation from P. fulgidum , but a derivation is also claimed from an older variety ‘Old Unique’, also known as ‘Rollinson Crimson’, in the mid-19th century. [49] Unique pelargoniums, being bushy and woody evergreens, directly resemble aromatic-leaf pelargoniums. They have distinctively fragrant leaves, and small flowers with speckled and feathery petals. They may have two colored leaves. Some types, known in the hobby as hybrid uniques, have been crossed with regal pelargoniums and, as a result of this cross, are much more flowery.Crop

  • The sharp-flowered stork-billed, scarlet unique scented geranium ( P. × ignescens ) [57] – a P. fulgidum hybrid [58]

F. Fragrant-leaved Pelargonium

Shrubby evergreen perennials grown mainly for their fragrance, may be species or varieties but all must have a clear and distinctive aromatic foliage. The aroma is released when the leaves are touched or some of the aromas are fragrant, others pungent and in some cases quite unpleasant. Many aromatic pelargoniums are grown for the oil geraniol, which is extracted from the leaves and is an essential oil that is used commercially in perfumery. The scent of some species growing in their natural habitat serves as a deterrent to grazing animals that dislike the smell emitted. opposite of this, It also attracts other insect life to bloom and pollinate the plant. The aromatic leaves can be used for potpourri and are also used as a flavoring in cooking. Sometimes aromatic types can be found in some of the other groups mentioned; For example, Angels, in whose genetic makeupP. Contains crispum , can often have a strong citrus aroma. The leaves are lobed, serrated, cut or variegated. The growth habit is very variable, but the flowers are less prominent than in other groups, and most closely resemble the species from which it originated. [49]

This includes:

  • Almonds – Pelargonium quercifolium
  • Apple – Pelargonium sulfuric
  • Apple – Pelargonium cordifolium
  • Apple/Mint – Pelargonium Album
  • Apricot/Lemon – Pelargonium scabrum
  • Balsam – Pelargonium panduriforme
  • Camphor – Pelargonium betulinum
  • Celery – Pelargonium ionidiflorum
  • Cinnamon – Pelargonium ‘Ardwick Cinnamon’
  • Coconut – Pelargonium grosslarioides ( Pelargonium periflorum )
  • Eau de Cologne – Pelargonium ‘Brilliantine’
  • Eucalyptus – Pelargonium ‘Secret Love’
  • Grapes – Pelargonium ‘Poquita’
  • Ginger – Pelargonium ‘Toronto’ or ‘Cola Bottles ‘ which is a variety of Pelargonium x nervosum
  • Hazelnut – Pelargonium ‘Odorata Hazelnut’
  • Lavender – Pelargonium ‘Lavender Lindi’
  • Lemon – Pelargonium crispum
  • Lemon – Pelargonium citronellum (synonym – Pelargonium ‘Mabel Grey’)
  • Lemon Balm – Pelargonium x Melisinum
  • Lime – Pelargonium x nervosum
  • Myrrh – Pelargonium myrmifolium
  • Nutmeg – Pelargonium x Fragrance
  • Old Spice – Pelargonium Variety x Aroma
  • Orange – Pelargonium x citriodorum (Synonym – Pelargonium ‘Prince of Orange’)
  • Peach – Pelargonium ‘Peach and Cream’
  • Peppermint – Pelargonium tomentosum
  • Pine – Pelargonium denticulatum
  • Pineapple – Pelargonium ‘Fantastic’
  • Raspberry – Pelargonium ‘Red Raspberry’
  • Rose – Pelargonium graveolens (synonym – Pelargonium roseum )
  • Rose – Pelargonium capitatum
  • Rose – Pelargonium redens
  • Southernwood – Pelargonium abrotanifolium
  • Spicy – Pelargonium exstipulatum
  • Strawberry – Pelargonium x Scarboroughia


  • ‘Attar of Roses’ – a variety of P. capitatum
  • ‘Crawfoot Rose’ – a variety of P. redens
  • ‘Doctor. ‘Livingston’ – a variety of P. redens
  • ‘Grey Lady Plymouth’ – a variety of P. graveolens
  • ‘Prince Rupert’ – a variety of P. crispum

G. Species Pelargonium

The species is the ancestor of all the cultivars listed above. In general, the definition of a species is that it is true, and is found to be doing so “in the wild”. The species Pelargonium has a great diversity of characteristics in habit, size, shape and color, which is probably responsible for them maintaining their popularity for over 300 years.

H. Primary Hybrids

A primary hybrid is identified as the resulting plant from a cross for the first time between two different known species. Examples are from P. × ardens – P. lobatum × P. Fulgidum (1810). P. × glaucifolium – P. _ gibbosum × P. From Lobatum (1822). Usually, but not always, primary hybrids are sterile.

List of AGM Pelargoniums

The following is a selection of pelargoniums which have gained the Royal Horticultural Society’s Garden of Merit Award:

  • ‘Attar of Roses’ (rose fragrant leaves, pink flowers) [59]
  • ‘Citriodorum’ (lemon-scented leaves, rose-pink flowers) [60]
  • ‘Dolly Varden’ (variegated leaves, scarlet flowers) [61]
  • ‘Frank Hedley’ (cream leaves, salmon pink flowers) [62]
  • ‘Fringed Aztec’ (white and purple fringed flowers) [63]
  • ‘Ratna’ (fragrant leaves, pink flowers) [64]
  • ‘Grace Thomas’ (lemon-scented leaves, pale pink flowers) [65]
  • ‘Joy’ (pink and white fringed flowers) [66]
  • ‘Lady Plymouth’ ( P. graveolens variegata – small mauve flowers) [67]
  • ‘Lara Candy Dancer’ (Fragrant leaves, pale pink flowers) [68]
  • ‘Lara Starshine’ (fragrant leaves, lilac flowers) [69]
  • ‘L’Élégante’ (ivy-leaved, trailing, white and purple flowers) [70]
  • ‘Mabel Grey’ (lemon-scented leaves, mauve flowers) [71]
  • ‘Mrs Quilter’ (bronze leaves, salmon pink flowers) [72]
  • ‘Radula’ (lemon and rose scented leaves, pink and purple flowers) [73]
  • ‘Royal Oak’ (balsam scented leaves, mauve flowers) [74]
  • ‘Spanish Angel’ (lilac and magenta flowers) [75]
  • ‘Sweet Mimosa’ (balsam-scented leaves, pale pink flowers) [76]
  • ‘Tip Top Duet’ (pink and wine-red flowers) [77]
  • ‘Voodoo’ (crimson and black flowers) [78]
  • P. tomentosum (mint-scented leaves, small white flowers) [79]


ornamental plants

Pelargonium ranks as one of the best-selling flowering plants and also in terms of wholesale price. [36]

fragrant leaf pelargonium

In addition to being grown for their beauty, P. Species such as graveolens are important in the perfume industry and are cultivated and distilled for their aroma. Although fragrant pelargoniums exist that smell of citrus, mint, pine, spice or various fruits, varieties with a rose scent are most important commercially. citation needed ]Pelargonium distillates and absolutes, commonly known as “fragrant geranium oil”, are sometimes used to supplement or tincture expensive rose oil. Fragrant pelargonium oils contain citronellol, geraniol, eugenol, alpha pinene, and many other compounds. The edible leaves and flowers are also used as flavorings in sweets, cakes, jellies and teas. Fragrant leafy pelargonium can be used to flavor jellies, cakes, butters, ice cream, iced tea and other dishes, with rose-, lemon- and peppermint-scents being the most commonly used. Hints of peach, cinnamon and orange are also used. Commonly used lemon-scented culinary species include P. crispum and P. Contains citronellum . Rose scenteds contain P. graveolensand members of the P. graveolens crop group. Other species and cultivars used in cooking include lime-scented P.  ‘Lime’, lemon balm-scented P.  ‘Lemon Balm’, strawberry-lemon-scented P.  ‘Lady Scarborough’ and peppermint-scented P. tomentosum. Huh. [80]

herbal medicine

In herbal medicine, Pelargonium has been used for bowel problems, wounds and respiratory ailments, but Pelargonium species have also been used for fever, kidney complaints and other conditions. Geranium (Pelargonium) oil is considered a relaxant in aromatherapy, and in recent years, P. sidoides and P. Respiratory/cold remedies made from Reniforme have been sold in Europe and the United States. [80] Echinacea along with P. sidoides is used for bronchitis. [81] P. gandhak is used for its astringent, tonic and antiseptic effects. citation needed ] It is used internally for debility, gastroenteritis and bleeding and externally for skin complaints, injuries and neuralgia and throat infections. Essential oil is used in aromatherapy. [82]


Pelargonin (pelargonidin 3,5-O-diglucoside) is a petal pigment of scarlet pelargonium. [83]


The chemist, John Dalton, realized that he was color blind in 1794, when he heard others describe the color of the flowers of the pink Pelargonium zonal [84] as pink or red, when he saw it as pink or blue, no matter what. The relationship was not red at all. [85]


  1. ^ The genetic description of Pelargonium was copied from the unpublished manuscript titled Hortus Kewensis L’Héritier in the Collection Generalogium [2]
  2. ^ It has been said that P. hirsutum was randomly assigned, [3] and named by van der Walt Pelargonium cuculatum (L.) Aetn [2] to be the lectotype species. In addition, P. hirsutum is not currently recognized as an accepted name.