Geranium phaeum

Black Widow Cranesbill

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Item #: 2372

Zones: 4a to 8b

Dormancy: Winter

Height: 24" tall

Culture: Part Sun to Shade

Origin: Southern Europe

Pot Size: 3.5" pot (24 fl. oz/0.7 L)

Moody, sultry and mysterious--add some melodrama to your shaded garden by including this interesting species. Crinkle-cut, star-shaped foliage is often spotted at the internodes with the same dark saturated violet that distinguishes the flowers. The round flowers are small, but numerous, and are flat to reverse concave. The foliage is lower-growing than other types, yet still suited for the middle layer of a planting. Will seed around slightly, never making a pest of itself.

Yes, Geranium phaeum wants a shady location, not a sunny one. Its dusky, often almost black flowers, give rise to a number of common names:Black Widow, Mourning Widow or Dusky Cranesbill. It will tolerate moderately dry shade. Established clumps can be divided. Division is the best way to propagate named clones (cultivars) such as 'Samobor'. Volunteer seedlings can be transplanted if they come up where they are not wanted. Geranium phaeum is in bloom for an extended period in spring. The upright inflorescence expanding over many weeks.