Zonal Pelargonium* Random Eleven
Running/Returning - AKRON / FAMILY
The Party - MATT POND PA
Wildflowers - TOM PETTY
Iceblink Luck - COCTEAU TWINS
Do Not As I Do - HANNE HUKKELBERG
Icebound Stream - LAURA VIERS
What A Shame - THE KINGSBURY MANX
Stewed Bark Of An Old Tree - DEVENDRA BANHART
Jackie, Dressed In Cobras - THE NEW PORNOGRAPHERS
Skeleton Key - MARGOT AND THE NUCLEAR SO AND SO'S
* We have these geraniums (gerania?) in the front and back which grow like weeds and flower multiple times throughout the year, bringing all manner of hummingbirds and butterflies and imbuing all our views with a circus of color and it's all just so Oz-ish (Where are the poppie fields?).
Anyway, as I understand it, in most parts of the country you have to pull the geraniums and shake out the dirt and store them in a cool dark place for the winter and then replant in Spring, and so on. But this is Southern California, where the motto is "Let It Grow" (or "Smoke em if you got em", I can't remember which). I just cut them back when they grow over the path or get taller than me.
Last weekend I needed to see if it would be OK to cut these back right before Winter this year. Probably nothing short of driving a tractor over them would do them any harm, but it never hurts to check. I just don't want to wait until the Spring because this year we hacked them all back right before they would have flowered so they didn't do their colorful thing.
Knowing that Al Gore invented the internets for such a thing, I hopped online to learn about my flora.
It turns out that our "geraniums" aren't actually geraniums. They are often referred to as Garden Geraniums or Zonal Geraniums because of the pattern on the leaf, but they are actually Pelargonium. Linnaeus originally included them with Geraniums when he classified them, causing almost as much confusion as when he put humans into the same category as the striped bark beetle.
So there are real Geraniums, and there are the common Garden Geraniums which are not Geraniums at all.
Zonal Pelargonium. That's what grows all around my house. Ya learn something new every day.