December
2007

 

 

By
B. Rosie Lerner
 
Purdue Extension
Consumer
Horticulturist

 

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12-20-07

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Geranium 'Rozanne' the 2008 Perennial of the Year


The Perennial Plant Association named the hardy Geranium ‘Rozanne’ as its 2008 Perennial Plant of the Year. Also known as Cranesbill, perennial geraniums have long been a staple on the gardeners’ palette.  The cultivar Rozanne is relatively new on the scene and was selected for outstanding flower size, unique color, and long blooming season.

‘Rozanne’ was originally discovered by a couple in their Sommerset, England garden, a result of collecting seed from existing plants and growing the seedlings out. One of the seedlings matured to be particularly robust, with larger leaves, and covered with large, 2.5 inch, iridescent, violet-blue blossoms with purple-violet veins and small, white centers. Its long bloom season is a great bonus, beginning in late spring and continuing to bloom profusely through mid autumn. 

‘Rozanne’ will perform best in moist, well-drained soil and full sun to partial shade, particularly in the heat of afternoon. It is hardy in U.S. Department of Agriculture Zones 5 through 8.

According to PPA, the plants can be expected to reach 20-24 inches tall and about 28 inches in spread (though Blooms of Bressingham, the British nursery that introduced the plant, says 18-20 inches tall and up to 36 inches in spread).

Grown in mass plantings, ‘Rozanne’ functions as an herbaceous ground cover, or in smaller groupings, makes an excellent specimen plant. The plant rarely requires dividing, and can be sheared back to about 3 inches to rejuvenate, if needed.  The plant also performs well in containers for patios, window boxes, and hanging baskets. 

Geranium ‘Rozanne’ is available from mail-order/online nurseries and, since it has been selected as the Perennial of the Year, it should also be available at many local garden centers.

 

Writer: B. Rosie Lerner
Editor: Olivia Maddox