Orange geum

Geums - Grow Guide

Take a look at our comprehensive guide on growing geums, including where to grow and recommended cultivars.

Geums are popular hardy perennials that can flower from late spring into summer and sometimes as late as autumn.

They have semi-evergreen foliage and offer flowers usually of yellow, orange and red. Most geums reach a height of 50cm so are perfect for the front or middle of a border. 

They're also slug resistant and great weed suppressors – a plant to be cherished.

Find out more on growing geums in our handy guide.

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Planting position

For success always grow geums in a moisture-retentive soil. They're happy in any pH but won’t cope well in very dry soils or in a baking hot south-facing border.

Geum rivale types prefer a shady spot and are ideal partners for hellebores. Geum chiloense types can cope with more sunshine but their semi-evergreen foliage is easily scorched in hot weather.

Geums won’t cope well with a sodden wet soil in winter.

Planting technique

Improve the water retentiveness of the soil by digging in plenty of organic matter before planting. Firm plants in well and water. Provide with extra water in very dry summers.

Propagation

Geums spread by rhizomes. Side shoots are easy to dig up and can be replanted in the garden. Plants can also be divided in spring and will set seed.    

Troubleshooting

Geums are trouble-free plants. Deer and slugs aren’t even interested in them! But if grown in containers they can be susceptible to vine weevil. Vine weevil damage is simple to detect. Adult weevils eat notches out of the foliage from spring to late summer. Vine weevil grubs will eat the roots, often causing the plant to die. Burn affected plants or treat with nematodes or Bayer Provado Vine Weevil Killer. 

Care

Deadhead plants after flowering. To encourage strong plants with plenty of flowers, divide plants every three years. If you fail to divide plants they'll become woody and often die. To ensure the plants are long-lived, make a point of dividing them. 

Spade cut out

Time to divide

If geums start to look bare in the centre, they're in need of dividing. In some cases you'll need to reject the heart of the plant. 

Geum 'Mrs J. Bradshaw'
Geum 'Mrs J. Bradshaw'

Geums to try

  • Geum rivale ‘Leonard’s Variety’ – ideal for shade or semi-shade. Identified by their nodding semi-double flowers of a rusty soft red colour. Height 45cm
  • Geum coccineum ‘Koi’ – an alpine type with a height of 30cm. Shocking orange flowers
  • Geum ‘Alabama Slammer’ – a new semi-double with ruffled orange flowers. Flowers in April, May and June and reaches 30cm in height

   

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