'Biokovo' Mountain Crane's-bill


Geranium x cantabrigiense is an intermediate hybrid crane's-bill derived from crosses of the white forms of G. dalmaticum & G. macrorrhizum. 'Biokovo' is the original & most widely available cultivar of this hybrid, but ther eare others, including 'Karmina' with heightened pinks, 'St Ola' in purer white, & 'Cambridge' with purply-pink flowers.

Blooms are numerous from late April to mid-summer (July) or a little longer, with strong butterfly appeal. The flowers are reflexed & white, aging with a faint flush of pink, & have showy pink stamens.

The aromatic, almost lemony foliage takes on interesting colors in autumn. The leaves are more or less evergreen through winter, but will most years require a sheering at winter's end to make way for refreshed growth.

Hardier than the hardy average for crane's-bills, 'Biokovo' is not fussy about soil conditions. Humusy with good drainage is perferred, but less perfect soils will prove adequate. It can be a bit aggressive, so not a good neighbor for smaller perennials. It doesn't like excess dampness.

It will not bloom in the shade, but wants sun to part sun. Ours is planted under the mailbox at the sunny back g ate, along with a small group of daffodils, so that when the spring daffodils are finished blooming there remains something pleasingly flowery in that spot through the summer.

It is named for Mount Biokovo in Croatia, where in 1990 the intermediate species was discovered as natural spontaneous hybrid.


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