Starter Size to Maturity, an example of how large some Scented Leaf Pelargoniums do grow

(August 12, 2016)

BB Bobby
and many other types of the Scented Leaf Group
flower prolifically over many months.
As you can see from this photo there are literally
hundreds of flowers at any one time.  By regular
dead heading flowers will continue throughout
the summer when grown outside and more or less all year inside.

BirdBush Bobby
Breeder of the BirdBush range is Mr B. White, England.

Scent/Aroma: distinct lime
Leaf: lime green, curly and round
Flower:  pale pink with plum veins, narrow spiky bottom petals
Growing Habit: upright and quite bushy, Ht. 18" x 18" diameter
Other Info:  excellent as a house plant or for outside during the summer months. 
Lime scented leaves are a useful addition to many recipes.

I often bring up the subject of plant pot size.
As you can see from this photo BB Bobby does make quite a large Scented Leaf Pelargonium.
‘Leg room’ is very important for all Scented Geraniums as the majority do have quite an extended root system.
As the roots grow and spread in the plant pot/container they will be taking up nutriments from the compost mixture/feed provided. This is how the plant stays matures and it is through this that it grows and becomes a real beauty, such as the one in the photograph. 
If the plant does not have sufficient leg room and the roots are totally congested and compacted the chances are that there will be little compost left in the pot, which means that there isn’t any nutriments present by this time.  Nor will the roots be receiving sufficient water as the remaining depleted compost isn’t enough to be able to become wet and the water will just run away through the bottom of the pot.  At this stage, this is often when green/white fly will become resident as they enjoy the extra dry conditions.  Chances are that you have watered but this has not been retained in the pot.  It is always worth checking a couple of hours later by lifting the pot/container and observing the weight.  If the pot feels light water has not been retained.  This is probably a sign that the plant does require potting up again in to fresh compost.  Trim the roots back when you tip the plant out and tease away the old compost and give a general tidy up or trim to the upper parts of the plant.  Always remove any plant material that is showing signs of decay.  If the plant was already in quite a large plant pot, such as the container shown in the photo, you will be able to reuse this.  Don’t forget to give the pot/container a good wash out before reusing.

It is recommended that you tip the plant out from its pot every now and again to check what is happening ‘under ground’ and provide a regular ‘service’.
The Mummy in the photo is a
2nd Season Parent plant and
the Baby Starter is just 4 weeks old. 
From a ‘Starter Baby’ to Maturity

Yes, it is quite hard to imagine that the little baby starter sized plant will, in quite a short space of time, turn into a raving beauty just like Mum. 

With the correct care Baby will grow to almost the same size as Mummy in just one season if planted early enough, i.e. Baby Starter potted up in May/June will become a Mummy by late July through to September.  Even when Baby is acquired later in the Summer growth will continue at quite a rapid rate through to mid October outside and would be continuous when grown inside.

I do have to stress, though, that monitoring each and every one of your Scented Geraniums is very important as all have different growing habits and requirements.  Some, the larger types, require far more water and feed for example.  The only way you will understand this is by practice and observation. 

Example to the right:  BirdBush Bobby taken in June 2010
Size is approx. 7 inches from base to top.

Occasionally, we are asked how ‘big’ is a Starter Size Scented Leaf Pelargonium?  This is a difficult question to answer simply.

  • Each type of Scented Geranium grows into a different sized Mature plant.
  • Some types are relatively compact and low growing at Maturity whilst others may grow up to a couple of metres in height/spread.
  • A Starter Sized cutting will vary accordingly to its Parent.  It may be as small as 3 inches from base to tip to maybe 7 inches or more. There is NOT any uniformity.
  • Time of the year cuttings are taken also determines the cutting size. Early in a Season the cutting would tend to be smaller.  From late May onwards the Parent plants are putting on plenty of new growth which provides ample cutting material and we are able to be very generous.
  • Different Propagation Methods – as we grow such a large quantity of Scented Leaf Pelargoniums we do tend to use Jiffy 7 Pellets – see photo.  However, as the Season progresses we also take softwood and hardwood cuttings from the Parent plants.  The latter methods would also dictate a differing size from a Jiffy produced cutting.

‘Please take good care of me…
please, pretty please!
as I really love it here at
Hill Foot Plants
and Annie & Guy will miss me.’

 We have written lots of articles in our HOT TOPICS and we would recommend that you browse through these from time to time, as they will provide lots of useful Tips.  If you have a particular question to ask us it is always worth checking to see if we have already written an article about the subject.

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and we aim to reply within 24 hours

Annie & Guy

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