pelargonium

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pelargonium

any plant of the chiefly southern African geraniaceous genus Pelargonium, having circular or lobed leaves and red, pink, or white aromatic flowers: includes many cultivated geraniums

Pelargonium

 

(stork’s-bill), a genus of plants of the family Geraniaceae. The plants are herbs or subshrubs whose stem is sometimes thickened and succulent at the base. The leaves are mostly opposite, stipulate, and lobed or pinnatisect; frequently they have glandular pubescence. The irregular flowers are in axillary umbel-like inflorescences.

There are approximately 250 species of stork’s-bill, distributed primarily in southern Africa. One species, P. endlicherianum, is found in Asia Minor and Transcaucasia, and four species are encountered in Australia. Many species, known as geraniums, were introduced into cultivation in the early 18th century for essential oil and as ornamentals.

In the Mediterranean countries and the USSR (the Crimea, the Caucasus, Middle Asia), the rose geranium (P. roseum), a complex hybrid of many species (P. radula, P. capitatum), is cultivated for essential oil. A densely branched subshrub, the rose geranium has long-petioled leaves, which are alternate, cordate, and divided into five to seven lobes. The flowers are in dense umbel-like inflorescences and the corolla is pink. Fruits form very rarely.

The rose geranium requires warmth, light, and moisture; at a temperature of 3° -5°C, the plant dies. In the USSR it is cultivated as an annual plant. The plant is also grown in France, Algeria, Spain, and Italy. Plantings in the USSR in 1973 occupied 1,200 hectares (ha) in the Georgian SSR, 1,600 ha in the Armenian SSR, and 960 ha in the Tadzhik SSR. The essential oil is obtained from the fresh leaves and stems and contains 65 to 70 percent citronellol. Oil content is from 0.09 to 0.16 percent of the weight of the raw mass. In the USSR, hybrid varieties containing up to 0.5 percent essential oil have been produced. The oil is used by the perfume, soap, and food industries.

The rose geranium is propagated by cuttings taken from shoot tips. The nurselings are raised in greenhouses. The cuttings are prepared in the fall; a cutting of 10–12 cm in length is considered standard. Up to 400 to 500 cuttings are planted per 1 sq m of protected soil. The rooted cuttings are kept until spring at a temperature of 4°–5°C. Standard nurselings have a stem no less than 15 cm in height. The soil in which the rose geraniums are planted is plowed in the fall to a depth of 25 to 30 cm. Manure and inorganic fertilizers significantly increase the crop harvest and the yield of essential oil. The nurselings are planted in April and are harvested once or twice during dry weather. The foliage is delivered immediately to a plant for processing, since it quickly loses its essential oil. Hybrids of P. graveolens and zonal geraniums—hybrid varieties produced by crossing P. inquinans and P. zonale—are popular as houseplants and greenhouse plants. The trailing varieties of Pelargonium, which have originated primarily from P. peltatum, are planted in gardens and parks.

REFERENCE

Efiromaslichnye kul’tury. Edited by A. A. Khotin and G. T. Shul’gin. Moscow, 1963.

K. D. ZALOZNYI and S. S. MORSHCHIKHINA

References in periodicals archive ?
Just to add to the confusion Pelargonium graveolens is known the world over by the common name of Rose Geranium and the oil distilled from its aromatic leaves is much sought after in the perfume industry.
Pelargoniums will have to go under cover soon Act now ahead of the first frost (above) to protect your garden's tender plants like dahlias (right) which may not survive winter frosts
After labeling the nodes as ROSE, ORCHID, and PELARGONIUMS, the drawings are extended to the completed flowers where the new nodes become the intersections of the former dashed and solid arcs and inherit the two-letter labels of the endpoints of the former nodes.
All pelargoniums propagate easily from stem and shoot tip cuttings.
STOKESLEY'S Fir Trees Pelargonium Nursery is holding an
Although Pelargoniums have a long tradition as ornamental and medicinal plants (Lis-Balchin, 2002), limited chemical sampling of members of this genus produced mainly common organic acids, derivatives of cinnamic acid, flavonoids, tannins, some coumarins and phytosterols (Hegnauer, 1966, 1989; Williams and Harborne, 2002).
The Lord Bute - a purple - almost black - pelargonium was registered in 1910 in honour of the man who played a major role in creating the city's spectacular parks.
PLANT OF THE WEEK - PELARGONIUM (Geranium) PELARGONIUMS are the darlings of the summer container, hanging basket, window box and border, bringing heaps of colour when placed in the sun.
Pelargoniums are more commonly known as geraniums by gardeners and form a much-loved part of the summer displays in pots and windowsills across the UK.
Eunice Jones, from Merthyr Tydfil, says: We take cuttings from pelargoniums right through the year, apart from the winter.
Feed tub-grown pelargoniums, window boxes and hanging baskets regularly with a liquid tomato feed ?
That is, the grid will be magic on the rows and columns with magic constant PELARGONIUMS.