The new plant Pelargonium multibracteatum is doing well and has some new leaf growth on its thick stems.
It has spreading branches and slightly scented light green circular leaves, lobed with rounded margins and purple zoned. When in bloom the flowers are white with a slight shade of pink at the center, and each flowering stalk bears up to 10 flowers.
The name multibracteatum refers to the numerous bracts of this plant and is native to East Africa, Tanzania to Ethiopia where it grows to about 30 cm in height under the section Cironium.
There may be a delay with the dispatch of orders at this time due to temporary suspension of the Elta Hellenic post (problem with the IT system.) But hopefully it will be resolved in the coming days.
We are currently working on seed packet designs of all pelargonium species available in our store. They contain a small but detailed description of each plant with a outline drawing of the flower & leaves.
The Sunflower is the national flower of Ukraine, commonly grown in fields throughout the country & facing east towards the sun, as its intensifying light illuminates the golden flowers and projects its powerful energy. In traditional folklore it is a symbol of warmth & the sun’s healing power, a highly cherished flower by the Ukrainian people who often wore or embroidered them into their clothing to deter negative energies and bring good health & luck. Sunflower designs were also added to furniture, fabric and wall paintings. The bright golden sunflowers against the blue sky is also said to represent the colours of the Ukrainian flag.
Sunflowers are tall upright annuals which grow to about 300 cm/120 inches in height and are member of the daisy family believed to make your day a happy one. Its large yellow flower represents the sun and the disk in the center contains lots of small flowers which attract many insects for pollination because of its warmth as it tilts towards the sun.
Sunflowers were introduced to Ukraine during the 18th century by Peter the Great and they have adjusted well to the hot dry conditions, especially with the creation of the cultivar ‘sunny’. The country is now one of the leading suppliers of sunflower oil from around the globe. Sunflower seeds are also extremely popular in food during lent, and were accepted by the Orthodox church during this fast.
But now as war rages in Ukraine, sunflowers are now being used as a symbol of peace and resistance, worn, planted or used as a symbol of protest in honour to the people of Ukraine, to the thousands of people who have lost their homes, family members, those fighting in war, or for whose who have left their country as refugees.
P. capitatum is a beautiful elegant pelargonium with delicate trailing stems which can look stunning in large pots. The attractive leaves are soft ovate & crinkled with a rose scent and bears lovely 10-12 mauve-pink flowers. The highly scented perfume of rose released from its soft ovate leaves is simply beautiful when added to potpourri, fragrant pillows, or to add flavour to food & beverages such as cakes, desserts, pastry, sugar, bread, chocolates, jelly, jam, ice cream, ice cubes, rice pudding, syrup, salads tea, cocktails, lemonade, fruit drinks and much more. Finger bowls with scented leaves were placed on the table during meals by the Victorians to keep their hand clean during each course. The Victorian sponge cake was also very popular during the 1800’s when scented leaves were added to the base of a tin with the mix added on top before baking, then removed when cool. Rose or graveolens leaves were added to a regular sponge mix and P. tomentosum- peppermint-scented leaves to the chocolate flavoured sponge. The flowers can be candied and used to decorate cakes, they are edible and can look very attractive.
Other scented leaf pelargoniums such as P. crispum, P. quercifolium, P. graveolens, P. tomentosum & P. citronellum which all have their own unique scented leaf fragrance can also be added to food & drinks as well as a several hybrids that are related to these species. They can also be added to towels to keep its freshness and help to deter moths. Essential oil is extracted from its leaves and is often used in aromatherapy, candles, soap, perfume and skincare products. The soft leaves can also be applied to the hands to soften hard skin and scratches.
Attar of roses is a popular cultivar of P. capitatum, the pinnately lobed leaves have a stronger rose scent and are rougher in texture with fine hairs, the flowers are also smaller & pinker in colour. Attar means highly perfumed in Persian and refers to its strong rose-like scent on the leaves, essential oil is extracted from its leaves and are used as a substitute for rose essential because it is less expressive to produce.
Rober’s lemon rose has large lemony rose-scented triangular irregular three-lobed leaves which are grey-green and soft to the touch, the origins of this hybrid are unclear, possibly a cultivar of P. graveolens or a hybrid of P. capitatum x P. x limoneum, The flowers are purple-pink with darker markings and is also known as the tomato geranium because its leaves resemble that of a tomato plant.
P. ‘pink capitatum’ is a variety of P. Capitatum but with larger striking flowers of pale pink with shades of darker pink around the edges of the petals. The leaves look similar to that of P. capitatum which are lobed but the scent differs and has a sweet rose lemon elder flower fragrance. This plant is also said to bloom for many months of the year.
P. ‘round leaf rose’ is another capitatum variety, a sprawling plant with pink reddish flowers and darker red veins, the leaves are rounded, ruffled and slightly toothed with lemon rose scent.
P. x asperum is a hybrid between P. capitatum and P. radens, it is used commercially for its essential oil which is obtained from its leaves. It has white to pale pink flowers with darker markings and has deeply divided leaves with soft hairs with a mint rose scent.
P. ‘Atomic snowflake’ has pungent scented leaves which are three-lobed and edged with white, the flowers bear striking mauve colour flowers with darker markings and is great as a container plant or for a flower border.
The graceful long-stemmed species pelargoniums can look just as stunning as any hybrid or cultivar with their long elegant flowers stalks which holds the beautiful delicate flowers and the dainty long leaf stalks that display their aromatic or decorative leaves.
P. capillare is a lovely pelargonium species with very thin petioles which are about 2-6 cm in length. The name Capillare means like thread, most likely because of its very thin leaf stems. The flowers are reddish-pink with raised patches of dark red on the upper petals also with markings of red on both the lower & upper petals, the underside is also darker in colour. This plant shows some similarities to P. tricolor but its leaves are more deeply divided and the flowers differ slightly. It is native to the South Western Cape of South Africa where it grows on mountainsides.
Pelargonium tenuicaule has long spreading rambling stems with five shallow toothed circular leaves. The flowers are cream when they first open but change to white with a dark purple smudge on every petal, The two upper petals are rounded and cupped. This plant can over time look rather bedraggled in appearance, it is native to Namibia and Namaqualand where it grows in rocky places.
Pelargonium spinosum has an unusual spine like petioles, believed to be hard debris from the continuous petioles which give it the appearance of thorns. The leaves are heart-shaped with coarse teeth and are somewhat pungent scented, they also vary in size depending on where they grow on the plant. The smaller leaves are visible on the shorter stems, while the larger are visible on the continuous petioles. The flowers are long ovate large light pink to white in colour with purple veins. It is native to the North-Western Cape and Namibia.
Pelargonium echinatum is another exquisite species, with woody spiny stems and long petioles. The leaves are grey-green ovate with 3-5 shallow lobes. The flowers are usually white but in their native habitat, pink and purple types also exist, followed by a deep red smudge on the upper petals. It is native to Northern Western areas of the Cape in dry conditions and sheltered by rocks or other shrubs, there are a few hybrid forms of this plant such as P. ‘miss Stapleton’.
Pelargonium plurisectum is a low growing shrub with thin branching stems which create a zigzag effect. The leaves are rounded and are divided into five toothed leaflets. The flowers are large orangy red or scarlet in colour with darker markings, to which the lower petals are slightly smaller than the upper petals. It has been discovered growing in Ethiopia and remains dormant for many months, it can also withstand cold conditions more than any other pelargonium.
Others include P. longicaule-has long elegant flower stems with pale pink flowers and dark green deeply divided leaves known as the butterfly bush. P. australe- long branching stems with ovate leaves and up to 12 white flowers native to Australia P. grossulariodes- long reddish stems with fruit scented kidney shaped leaves and small reddish purple flowers. P. Capitatum- long spreading branches with rose scented leaves.
Pelargonium bowkeri has a somewhat strange yet impressive flowers, white to yellowy pink or purplish veins with feather like lower petals which forms an inflorescence of up to twelve flowers which blooms in Summer during the rainy period and is scented at night. It also has a tuberous root which stores water that grows to about 3 cm across. The leaves are feathery which is why it is also known as the carrot leaved pelargonium and is native to the Eastern cape, Kwazula-Natal where it grows in grassland or in rocky areas.
Pelargonium auritum has unusual & attractive flowers, which differ in colour depending on the variation. P. auritum var. auritum has dark purple black petals with red anthers and orange pollen and P. auritum var. carneum has white to light pink petals, which form an inflorescence of up to 6 flowers. It has a caudex tuber which grows to about 3 and a half cm across and is dormant in Summer, flowering from September until January The leaves are ellipse or lance-like in shape and is native to the Western and Eastern Cape.
P. antidysentericum has white, purple or pale purple flowers with deep purple streaks on the two upper petals which are larger than the lower and has orange pollen. This plant has a caudex tuber which grows to a thickness of 14 cm and is a turnip-like in shape, becoming woodier with age, the stems range from dark to light brown and the leaves grow on clusters of short branch-lets which are kidney-shaped with rounded lobes, some have a zone. It is native to the Northern Cape where it grows on mountainsides, shrubland, ravines and close to water. It was given the name antidysentericum because it was used as a cure against dysentery.
Pelargonium praemorsum is also known as the five-fingered pelargonium which has rather unique flowers, they are white to cream in colour with the upper petals being considerably larger than the lower petals with reddish or reddish-brown streaks, forming an inflorescence of 1-2 flowers. This plant is a weedy shrub let that is dormant in Summer, it also has a trunk that grows larger as it ages with narrow semi-succulent stems. The leaves are deeply divided, kidney-shaped or rounded and have a spicy sweet-scent.
P. klinghardtense is a somewhat strange but curious pelargonium with chunky succulent knotted stems. This plant doesn’t require much water and grows in rocky deserts in full sun, the flowers are white and contain five yellowy-green sepals on long branching stems. During the summer P. klinghardtense is dormant and loses its leaves which are large and glaucous. It is native to the Northern Cape and southern Namibia, to which it was given the name “Klinghardtense” because of the location where it was first discovered on the Klinghardt mountains.
Pelargonium punctatum also has extraordinary flowers, light yellow to light beige with elongated upper petals and dark reddish dots or markings, the three smaller lower petals also have red dots which flower in winter (October to the beginning of November). It has a caudex tuber which can grow to about 8cm and simple ovate leaves. This plant is native to Southern parts of Namaqualand and the Western Karoo where it grows in shrubland, hilltops and mountain ranges. The name “punctatum” refers to the red dots on the flower petals.
Pelargonium scabrum is a charming pelargonium that has strong lemon-scented leaves with quite a rough texture & rhomboidal in shape. The flowers are white but can also be pink with purple markings on the upper petals and each flowering stalk contains about six flowers. It is an upright branching shrub that grows to about 100 cm /39 inches in height native to the Western Cape, Northern Cape and Eastern Cape where it grows in dry, rocky and coastal areas which has summer and winter rainfall. The name ‘scabrum’ is derived from the Latin meaning having a raised texture, this refers to the leaves of this plant which is covered in rough hairs. Ideal for pots, tubs, fragrant gardens, rock gardens and succulent gardens. This plant prefers dry sandy loam soil conditions (PH. Acid/neutral) in full sun. It differs from the other strongly scented Pelargonium citronellum below by its larger leaves which are palmate in shape with pointed lobes and is also taller than P. scabrum reaching a height of 2 m. The flowers are also larger in size and purplish-pink in colour with darker markings on the upper petals. It is native to the Western Cape where it grows near streams or on hillsides.
Another lemon-scented pelargonium is P. crispum below which also has rough leaves but are much smaller in size with crisped margins. It is an upright plant that grows to about 70 cm /28 inches in height with large pink flowers and darker markings on the upper petals which shows some likeness to P. hermanniifolium.
Pelargonium vitifolium below has a somewhat lemony balm scent on the leaves, which resembles a vine leaf in shape with stiff hairs and are rough to the touch. It is a large upright shrub with coarsely toothed heart-shaped leaves, this shrub can grow quite large and may take over quite a wide area if not pruned in a Mediterranean type climate, it can also survive for short periods of frost or snow when fully grown.
The pelargonium species are not only admired for their wide variety of leaf shapes, scents and floral colours but also for their flower and petal shapes. Some types can vary and there are numerous differences in shape, size, nectar tube length and the number of petals. Some have long oblong petals like that of P. grossularioides left, a fruit scented leaf pelargonium, the flowers of this species tend to be small in size, up to about 10 mm across and form a compact inflorescence of many short flower stalks, like an umbel. The upper petals have dark purple markings and very thin flower stalks. It is a low spreading plant with kidney-shaped leaves that are similar in appearance to a gooseberry leaf.
The purplish-pink flower petals of Pelargonium denticulatum below are also quite oblong but are not so elongated, the upper petal also bends back sightly and the lower petals are slightly smaller in size. Dark red or purple markings are visible on the upper petals, whereas the lower petals contain three petal claws (narrow stalks at the base of the segment). Each flower stalk contains up to six flowers, It is a low growing shrub with dark green sticky finely divided leaves.
The strong lemony balm scented pelargonium vitifolium below has two large upper petals with dark reddish-purple markings and three oblong lower petals with purple veins, at about 15 mm across and appears lighter at the centre. Each flowering stalk contains up to ten pink to light purplish-pink flowers and its leaves resemble that of a vine leaf. This plant is a large upright shrub with coarsely toothed heart-shaped leaves.
The flowers of Pelargonium cucullatum below have large ovate shaped upper petals, narrower at the base with purplish-pink markings & veins, the lower petals are slightly smaller and narrower with lighter pink veins. Each flower is 4 cm across and the flowering stalk contains about five flowers. It is an upright branching slightly woody shrub with rounded toothed leaves that tilt upwards forming a cup shape.
Pelargonium inquinans has red scarlet flowers but also has other colours such as light pink, salmon and white. The flower petals are more rounded and all appear the same size but the two upper petals are slightly smaller and upward, whereas the three lower petals are more equally spaced. The inflorescence contains an array of five to thirty flowers. It is an upright branching shrub with light green heart-shaped leaves with a velvety texture that is covered by glandular hairs.
These flowers listed here are mostly pollinated by bees but others have different sized nectar tubes for various insects to pollinate them, such as beetles, moths, wasps, flies and various bee types that have long tongues.
Pelargonium echinatum has an exquisitely beautiful inflorescence of 3-8 large white flowers with bright red markings on the upper petals, arranged in an umbel shape which is winter flowering, also ranging in colour from pink to dark purple. The leaves are heart-shaped with greyish green leaves which have scalloped margins, in Summer this plant loses its leaves and absorbs the sunlight through its stems. It is a succulent low growing shrub native to the Northern Cape and Western Cape where it grows on a stony and rocky areas on cliffs or slopes. The name ‘echinatum’ is derived from the Latin meaning covered in sharp-pointed stipules, a small leaflike appendage usually at the base of the petiole stalk. Ideal for pots but prefers hot dry conditions in Summer and requires little watering during that period. In its natural habitat, it can withstand temperatures up to 40 c and can live up to 20 years.
The classical and elegant white flowers of the pelargonium species can look just as stunning in the garden as the other colour varieties especially when grown together to add colour and fragrance. They can also stand out against the green leaves of various shades, textures & shapes. Pelargonium odoratissimum is especially a lovely low growing plant, not only because of its delightful white flowers with tiny purple blotches on the upper petals but also for its strong apple-scented rounded velvety crinkled leaves which grow well in medium-sized pots. It is similar to the Pelargonium album which means ‘white flowers’ in Latin to which the leaf stems are semi-succulent like that of P. odoratissimum although the leaves have a more minty apple fragrance. They grow well in shady mixed with other plants in a border. View on website
Pelargonium tomentosum has attractive clusters of small white flowers with bright purple markings on the upper petals arranged on long flower stalks, the leaves have a soft velvety texture with a peppermint fragrance, they grow well as ground cover, in pots or planted in the garden but prefer shade in hot climates. It is native to the Western Cape and the leaves can be used in baking. Pictured left
Pelargonium grandifolium pictured below has attractive large creamy white flowers with dark reddish markings on the upper petals and bluish green digitate leaves with a waxy texture. It is a slightly woody shrub native to South Western and Western Cape which is ideal as a border plant in a rock garden or grown in a pot. The name grandifolium means ‘large flower’ and was brought to Kew Gardens in the late 1700s by Francis Masson during his travels to South Africa. Pictured below right.
Pelargonium abrotanifolium has small dainty white flowers and purple markings on the upper petals with lovely feathery deeply divided greyish-green leaves which are aromatic. It is native to a large area of the Western Cape towards the Eastern Cape, of South Africa. This plants name is derived from the Latin meaning ‘Southern-wood leaves’ which refers to its likeness to the leaves of Artemisia abrotanum, a shrub, also connected to the Greek goddess Artemis the goddess of the hunt. Ideal growing with other low growing plants in the garden or in a medium-sized pot, pictured below.
Pelargonium scabrum has white or pink flowers with purple markings on the upper petals. A pretty pelargonium with lemon scented rhomboidal rough leaves. The name ‘scabrum’ is derived from the Latin meaning having a raised texture. It is native to the Western Cape, Northern Cape and Eastern Cape. Ideal for pots, fragrant gardens, rock gardens and succulent gardens. pictured below
Pelargonium mollicomum is a graceful plant with creamy white flowers and thin purple lines on the upper petals. This plant has a slightly exotic appearance with pineapple scented light green leaves, its name is derived from the Latin meaning soft hairs. It is native to the Eastern Cape and is ideal for fragrant gardens, window boxes, pots or hanging baskets. Pictured below, view on website
The flowers of Pelargonium peltatum are very attractive and can range in colour from white, pale pink to pale purple. The leaves are slightly succulent, rounded and fleshy with a light fragrance, resembling an ivy leaf. It is a trailing plant native to the Eastern and Western cape of South Africa which is ideal for hanging baskets, pots and planted next to other shrubs or trees, the leaves and petals have medical properties. pictured below
Pelargonium exstpulatum is a charming pelargonium with white flowers and dark reddish markings, the two upper petals are joined together and the lower is shaped like a spoon. The leaves have a sweet/spicy scent which are rhomboid and grey-green in colour. It is native to South Africa in the Southern Cape, in areas of the Klein Karoo and the Little Karoo. Ideal for pots or rock gardens in dry environments. pictured below
Pelargonium blandfordianum is a lovely pelargonium with deeply incised grayish leaves which are fragrant with a scent of rose and white flowers with reddish blotches on the under petals. It is believed to be a hybrid between P. radula and P. quinquevulnereum. There are a few variations of this plant, ‘album’ refers to the white flowered form and ‘roseum’ to the rose pink flowered form which has a distinct rosy wormwood fragrance on the leaves.
This hybrid was developed during the early 1800s, introduced by George Spencer Churchill the Marquis of Blandford to which this plant derives its name. George Spencer was a keen and accomplished botanist while he resided at White knights park estate, a medieval manor which is now part of the university of Reading (white knights campus). Here he became widely known for has large collection of rare and exotic plants from around the globe. Various species were also transported there from the royal gardens by order of the king. George took out a loan to expand and enhance his new estate, creating many new features, such as the ‘Chantilly garden’ which contained several conservatories possibly for tropical plants, a vineyard, bridges, a wide variety of trees, a botanical garden with a wide selection of unique plants, many from America, a wilderness and many seats, fountains, grotto’s and pavilions. Later the gardens fell into decline after George Spencer became bankrupt and his creditors set fire to his house in rage, the rest of the estate was sold off. But remains of the gardens was again found after the world wars.
Pelargonium radula is a parent of the hybrid Pelargonium blandfordianum, it has decorative deeply incised leaves with a lemony rose fragrance and small pale pink flowers with dark purple markings on the upper petals. It has similar characteristics to P. graveolens which is closely related and possibly an equivalent to P. radens or a clone and also has a few forms with varied flower colours. The other parent is Pelargonium quinquevulnereum
which was also believed to have been a hybrid, grown by Mr Armstrong who lived in Hampshire, that shares some similarities to Pelargonium graveolens.
Pelargonium radens is a tall upright shrub with delicate grey green finely divided leaves and light purple flowers with darker markings on the upper petals. The fragrance of the leaves are rose lemon scented and grows well in medium to large pots often growing beside other Plants. Pelargonium graveolens has soft velvety triangular deeply incised leaves which have a somewhat rosy mint scent, a well known pelargonium since the 17th century in food and beverages, tea, potpourri and perfume. Other hybrids related to Pelargonium radens or Pelargonium graveolens is P. ‘citrosum’ which has strong citronella lemon fragrance with pale pink flowers also known as the mosquito plant which is popular in the United States & Canada and is a cultivar of P. graveolens, also said to help deter mosquitoes.
P. ‘lady plymouth’ is a hybrid from the species P. ‘graveolens’ with silver & cream leaves which are variegated with a minty scent and light purple flowers, there is also a similar cultivar known as P ‘grey lady plymouth‘ with has grey green leaves. P. ‘Cinnamon rose’ has spicy cinnamon scented leaves, and an upright growth with short branches and pale purple flowers. P. ‘Secret love’ is a eucalyptus scented leaf pelargonium with light pink flowers showing some characteristics to P. capitaum. P. x melissinum is a cross between P. crispum and P. graveolens which has large lemon balm scented deeply cut leaves and pink flowers.
P. ‘rosemint’ has mint rose scented leaves which are variegated and is used in perfumes, showing some similarities to P. lady plymouth. P. ‘westerlund’ rose lemon scented leaf close resembling that of P. graveolens.