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Plantgasm - I love plants too much. By Derek Powazek.

An Explosion of Beauty

Geranium maderense bloom

I mentioned my love for the giant Geranium maderense in my back yard a few weeks ago. I think she appreciated the positive reinforcement, because she started to bud right afterward. She’s now putting on quite a show.

Geranium maderense bloom

I can’t help but feel a little melancholy at the display. Since she’s monocarpic, the blooms mean she’s not long for this world. Still, if you’ve gotta go out, you might as well go out in an explosion of beauty.

Geranium maderense bloom

Hopefully she’ll leave a new generation behind. I’ll be on the lookout for seeds.

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5 Responses

We have one of these and they grow all over one of our small local towns. I love this plant. I also love how your top photo captures the sweetness of its buds. Ours bloomed last year and this year shows no sign. Maybe it’s an every-other or every-third year bloomer?

Posted by Marya on 24 March 2012 @ 10pm

(Are you sure it’s monocarpic? Ours still looks healthy, just no blooms.)

Posted by Marya on 24 March 2012 @ 10pm

We dont have those up here in the NW. I saw them in San Fransisco last year and fell in love. Lucky you!!

Posted by Christina Salwitz on 25 March 2012 @ 10am

That is beautiful. I wonder if it is hardy where I live in zone 3?

Posted by Melanie on 25 March 2012 @ 8pm

Marya: I believe the plant is a biennial, which means it takes two years to bloom. So if yours didn’t bloom this year, it should next year. I’m pretty sure it’s monocarpic, but sometimes they offset so when the plant that bloomed dies, a daughter plant is already going beside it.

Melanie: Alas, I think zone 3 is too cold. Annie’s Annuals lists it as zone 9 to 11.

Posted by Derek on 26 March 2012 @ 3pm


Plantgasm is where Derek Powazek chronicles his botanical antics and misadventures. More.