Pelargonium hystrix

Leo A. Martin
Sun, 26 Oct 2008 09:33:40 PDT
Hello Pamela,

> I have a
> fan blowing 24 hours a day with a gentle breeze over the plant table with
> a grow light being a 400 watt Hortilux-Blue metal halide daylight grow
> lamp
> 4' above the plants.  This set-up is in
> my patio room that has many windows for extra light.  The patio room temp
> is in the low 60's and I'm wondering if that is cool enough for the plant
> or does it need it cooler?  When would you recommend watering to start as
> for a schedule- Sept/Oct?  And how often should I be watering the
> plant-once/week or less?  I live in Maryland and we're expecting some snow
> soon so I could only put the plant outside in the summer, but that would
> be during the dormant time.  Should I just keep it in shade during that
> time?  Thanks again for your help. I really appreciate it!!

That lamp gets very hot. Be careful. Don't spray water on the plants while
the lamp is hot or you might get some on the lamp and it might explode,
showering your plants with near-molten glass.

This plant doesn't mind warm daytime temperatures during the growing
season so long as it has cool nights. If the room is full of
winter-growing plants, let it get down to just above freezing each night.
They will love it. The cooler the better.

Most winter-growing plants don't mind a few degrees of frost but without
knowing which plants you have it would be safer to keep it above freezing.
I'm not familiar with this Pelargonium so I don't know how much frost it
takes. Other winter-growing Pelargonium here in Phoenix are not harmed by
overnight temperatures in the mid 20s F / -5C.

In the summer you won't want this plant outside while dormant. Put it in a
box in a closet. Or, if you plant it in a decorative container, leave it
on a shelf for display in the house. Don't forget about it. In late fall
when nights start to cool take it out and start watering again.

Leo Martin
Phoenix Arizona USA

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