Geranium (Hardy Geranium or Crane’s Bill) ‘magnificum’
The vibrant dark violet-blue flowers of the Showy Geranium (Geranium x magnificum) appear to have penciled dark-blue veins. The blossoms attract butterflies and are about twice the size of most hardy geranium flowers, two inches rather than the average one inch across. Great in borders, cottage gardens or wild gardens. It is indeed “Showy” and a stand-out in any collection of crane’s-bill. This hybrid forms a mound of deeply-cut green foliage, bearing masses of large cup-shaped violet-blue flowers. Plants need to be cut back hard after blooming to encourage fresh new foliage. Often has attractive red fall color. This Geranium still rates as among the best of the blue forms.
Magnificum is exceptionally hardy and will grow in most areas of the United States. Listed as hardy in zones 3-10, it will tolerate the dry heat of the southwest but does not like the humid heat of the southeast. Some hardy Geraniums are also notorious self-seeders, but Magnificum is a sterile hybrid that will grow only where you plant it.
Planting Instructions: Dig a hole large enough to encompass the roots without bending or circling. Set the plant in place so the crown (part of the plant where the root meets the stem) is about 1-2 inches below the soil surface. Cover with soil to the original soil surface and water thoroughly. Propagated by seeds and division of roots. Should be transplanted from the seedbed in early spring. Prefers full sun and well-drained soil.